정월 . 대보름
Jeongwol . Daeboreum
First Month of the Lunar Year . Big Full Moon
15 days into the Korean Lunar New Year, this March 5th marks the rise of the first full moon of the year, which is celebrated in Korea in the name of Jeongwol Daeboreum.
Traditionally in Korea, days, months and years came around in a lunar cycle, following the transformation of the moon. For this reason, Jeongwol, the first month in a Lunar year, was the most important time of the year to plan out and secure their fortunes for the entire year ahead.
Moonlight is considered a symbol of a good force that outshines darkness, diseases and misfortune, so Jeongwol Daeborum, when the moon is at its fullest presence and the brightness, became a festive occasion, perfect for the community to gather and ward off misfortune and wish for a prosperous year.
There are various traditions and customs performed during the Jeongwol Daeboreum festival, but let’s explore the most representative cultural FOOD practices you can experience here at miss KOREA BBQ on this year’s Jeongwol Daeboreum on March 5th!
On March 5th, instead of plain white rice, miss KOREA BBQ will serve ogokbap with your meals to boost balance in your life for the year ahead. To accompany the ogokbap with even more nutrition and flavor, miss KOREA’s banchan, small complementary side dishes, will be prepared with a focus on namul ingredients and with an addition of a bureom dish.
Ogokbap at miss KOREA BBQ
Made of 5 types of grain and beans, ogokbap usually consists of sticky rice, foxtail millet, sorghum, red beans, and beans. Its grain composition often varies, but generally it is a mix of 5 ingredients that represents the 5 elements of nature by their resembling colors. On Jeongwol Daeboreum, people eat Ogokbap in hopes to achieve balance in life by the spirit of the 5 elements—water, tree, fire, earth and metal—that serve as life’s foundation.
Namul at miss KOREA BBQ
Namul, seasoned, sundried spring greens, is common as part of banchan in a Korean meal, but it is believed that eating namul on Jeongwol Daeborum will help us fend off extreme heat and remain healthy throughout the summer.
Bureom at miss KOREA BBQ
Bureom, hard shelled nuts such as peanuts, walnuts, pine nuts and chest nuts, will also be a new addition in our banchan for this special occasion. Traditionally, Korean people start out the morning of Jeongwol Daeboreum by cracking bureom with their teeth, then throwing the shells over the roof wishing for good health.
Eating ogokbap, namul, and bureom on Jeongwol Daeboreum are all tied to wishful thinking that good fortune and good health will come their way, but they are more than mere superstitious customs.
These practices bear the wisdom of Korean people, as they ate ogokbap, namul, and bureom to replenish essential nutrients to rebuild a healthy stronghold in the body, weakened from lack of varied food source during the barren winter. Cracking bureom with their teeth was also known to help strengthen their teeth.
Wishing for your best health throughout the year, miss KOREA has adopted the wisdom of Korean ancestors and prepared a nutritious and delicious meal with a combination of ogokbap, namul and bureom.
Don’t miss Jeongwol Daeboreum, relive the tradition this Thursday, March 5th, at miss KOREA BBQ through the lens of food! Come celebrate the first full moonshine of the Korean lunar year and anticipate a great year for you and your loved ones!