Her son’s condition has improved as a result, she said, while admitting that her husband was less enamored of the meatless diet.
“I transform the recipe a bit to make it more palatable for him,” she said.
“For example, when I make a steamed pumpkin, I put some shrimp inside the hollowed-out pumpkin, together with mushrooms, tofu, ginko seeds and pine seeds demanded in the original recipe,” she said.
While South Korean TVs, fridges and mobile phones have been exported with enormous success around the globe, Korea’s highly distinctive cuisine remains relatively unknown.
In recent years, the government has invited overseas chefs to special “gourmet weeks,” as it seeks to give Korean food the same exposure as Asian cuisines like Chinese, Thai and Japanese.
Some specialist dishes such as the pungent seafood delicacy hongeo — skate fermented in its own uric acid — will always be a hard sell, but staples like Korean barbecued beef and pork are already making inroads in the restaurant scene in Western countries.