I’ve watched a lot of scenes in Korean dramas where they serve 미역국 (miyeokguk) or seaweed soup to a person who is celebrating his or her birthday. I thought they just because of the tradition. You know, something can not come out of nothing, rite?! I’ve also watched something that relates this seaweed soup with pregnancy. So I looked it up *my curiousity once again rules over me!*, and this is the information that I got:
This soup is known as the mandatory dish on birthday. Westerner may perceive it as a Korean style birthday cake, but it actually has a deeper meaning than just a celebration. It is true that the tradition of drinking 미역국 on birthday has a significant relation with pregnancy.
In Koren tradition, a pregnant woman should maintain their emotional stability and be surrounded by good things. It is done to make sure good physical characteristic of the to-be born baby. One of the thing that a pregnant woman should do is to eat unblemished food or uncrooked fruits.
This soup is also served after labour, since it could help the recovery of the condition and the health of the mother. It’s a healthy food that contains vitamin A and C, calcium, iron, protein and it’s low in fat and calories. It also believed that this soup helps in producing breastmilk.
Now, when Korean people celebrate their birthday, they drink this soup as a reminder of a mother’s pain in labour, bringing a child out to the world. It also said that it symbolized the first food that one ate through his/her mom’s breastmilk.
It’s such a beautiful reminder of a mother-child relation. Next time you celebrate your birthday, remember that it’s not only YOUR day! Go and thank your parents for bringing you to the world and giving you their love with all their might that helps you be who you are today. Remember your mom’s 9 months of carrying you and her pain in labour. *tears* ❤
And now, here is the recipe that I found.. Ahhh… I want to try it! *drools*
[image: credit to http://www.buhaykorea.com]
– 1 oz dried seaweed
-1 Tbsp sesame oil
-3 cups soup stock (anchovy or beef)
– Tbsp soy sauce
-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
How to cook
– Soak The seaweed in a large bowl
– Drain the seaweed dry, cut into 2-inch pieces.
– Sauté seaweed in sesame oil for 2 minutes.
– Add garlic and soy sauce
– Pour stock into pot and turn heat to high.
– cook for about 20 mins until the soup looks milky.