Food Issue - Name that banchan!

Can you identify these addictive Korean side dishes?

Thursday October 15, 2015 04:00 am EDT

The best part of a meal at a Korean restaurant may be the stuff that's not on the menu: the side dishes. Those endlessly refillable, complimentary small plates — called banchan — bring a great deal of flavor, not to mention flair, to the table. But they can also bring a lot of questions, like: What's that mysterious brown lump covered in brown sauce? How spicy is that red stuff? Animal, vegetable, or mineral? Because the selection of banchan changes seasonally at most restaurants, and because the dishes are usually presented without comment, identifying them can be tricky. We did some taste testing at Woo Nam Jeong Stone Bowl House to pin down a handful of the items you may encounter alongside your next order of bulgogi or bibimbap. See if you can match the dishes to their names.

HINT: Many banchan can be categorized into a few main types: kimchi, any kind of fermented vegetable; namul or muchim, marinated or seasoned cooked vegetables; jjeon, battered and fried pancake-like dishes; jiim, steamed or boiled dishes like eggs or fish; bokkeum, saucy, stir-fried foods; and jorim, foods prepared by simmering and glazing, usually in soy sauce.?????Fill out my online form.??

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