By Steven Park

Although many people view raw foods as something dangerous and unappetizing, it is not uncommon in many Asian countries. South Korea is known for many wild foods but raw salmon and beef is extremely popular among many Koreans.

Salmon is a popular ingredient used in making sushi and sashimi and is usually prepared raw. Due to the fact that it is raw, uncooked salmon may have bacteria, parasites, and other pathogens that are harmful to people. Therefore, to ensure the salmon is safe to consume, it is usually frozen or farmed properly to prevent illness. If prepared properly, raw salmon carries a buttery taste and due to high amounts of fat, it will melt in your mouth. Bad raw salmon, however, will be very slimy and have a fishy odor. Yeo-Nuh (raw salmon in Korean) is typically eaten on its own, with rice (Yeo-Nuh Dup bap), or alcohol.

Yukhoe, a raw meat dish in Korean cuisine is usually made of raw beef in the shape of thick noodles. This dish is served with raw egg yolk, sesame seeds, cheese, and diced pear. Just like raw salmon, Yukhoe is made with cold beef to ensure the safety of consumers. This can be eaten on its own, with rice, or alcohol. 

It may seem weird or absolutely disgusting to some, but many Koreans consider these raw foods a delicacy. In fact, some of ICSU’s students enjoy eating these foods. Junior Mickey Jo exclaims, “When you eat it, it’s like heaven in your mouth! I crave Yeo-Nuh and Yukhoe so often and take any chance to eat it.”

Overall, raw salmon and beef are worth giving a try. There is always the chance that you may dislike it, but who knows? They might become one of your favorite foods to eat.