Beat back the chill with a hot bowl of better broth
[Recommended Local Eateries] Meals with comforting broth
As chilly late-autumn temperatures cause us to don long sleeves and high collars, meals featuring hot, comforting broths start to sound better and better.
This issue of Dynamic Busan features favorite restaurants that offer delicious, heart warming meals that heat up the body from inside out.
■ Myeongye Haemul Japtang (명예해물잡탕)
"Jap" in Korean means "miscellaneous" and can be found in a number of Korean menu items. Japtang is a kind of casserole made by boiling various meats and vegetables with spices in a pot. Myeongye Haemul Japtang, favored by the Gamcheon 1-dong (neighborhood) dongjang (community head), serves up a meal that can be enjoyed all year but is especially suitable during autumn's chill out.
A thick seafood-stuffed casserole called "haemul japtang" is the restaurant's signature menu item and can be yours for 8,000 won. Unlike other typical Korean soups, starch is added to these dishes to thicken its already pleasant broth.
The dish that gives this restaurant its name was conceived and developed by a former hotel chef over two years. Fresh seafood including blue crabs, prawns, scallops and webfoot octopus is prepared daily with aromatic mushrooms. Mild-to-spicy flavors can be chosen with various side dishes available including parae jeon (sea lettuce pancakes) and fried eggs. The community head recommends wrapping rice in a dried seaweed sheet and dipping it in the japtang sauce before eating. That is, if you have any of it left after greedily tucking in to the main attraction.
-Address: 398, Wonyang-ro, Saha-gu
-How to get there: Nampo Station (Metro line 1), exit 8. Take bus 9 and get off at the Gamcheon Sageori bus stop. Cross the road and walk to find the restaurant, which is located across from the Gamcheon Firehouse, near a hospital.
-Hours: 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Closed every third Sunday.
■ Hadong Jaecheopguk (하동재첩국)
There is a jaecheop (small freshwater marsh clams) street in Samnak-dong where restaurants used to collect the little clams at the Nakdonggang River clustered around the Sasang Industrial Complex.
While Nakdonggang jaecheop has since disappeared, some of these res-taurants still offer this uniquely Busan dish.
Hadong Jaecheopguk, the dongjang's favorite, points to its 31-year history with timeworn tables and numerous picture frames featuring celebrities who have praised their food.
A pungent fishy scent might deter newcomers. However, jaecheop is rich in calcium and iron and blends beautifully in a rich soup. Hadong Jaecheopguk in particular is faithful to the origins of this dish, which runs 6,000 won a person.
They use only natural, fleshy jaecheop from the Seomjingang River in Jeollanam-do (province) that is finished with chopped chives atop the milky-white broth. Wild vegetables and sauce are provided to mix with rice, as well.
Like many older Korean restaurants, Hadong Jaecheopguk's menu is sparse, so sparse there's no need to order. As soon as your server knows how many customers are at the table, the meal is served.
In addition to the cooked version, jaecheophoe (raw clam, 10,000 won) is also popular among customers. Chewy jaecheop harmonize well with crunchy cucumbers and carrots and a not-too-spicy sauce agrees with just about everybody.
-Address: 33, Nakdong-daero 1518beon-gil, Sasang-gu
-How to get there: Mora Station (Metro line 2), exit 3. Walk straight. Turn left at the T-station alley and walk for five minutes. The restaurant is located across from a public parking lot.
-Hours: 6 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. daily.