iPhoneOgraphy – 16 Nov 2016 (Day 321/366)
Buldak is a Korean dish made from heavily spiced chicken. The term “bul” is Korean for “fire” and “dak” translates to “chicken.” A decade ago, buldak became famous for its extreme spiciness. Even some Koreans are unable to eat buldak for this reason.
South Korea’s long term recession and economic downturn made people seek spicy food in order to relieve stress. Buldak was invented by Fuyuan Foods, which first registered Buldak at a patent office around 2000. In April 2008, however, with the expiration of the original patent, the name Buldak became free for public use. There used to be only one chain of restaurants that served Buldak but now there are many more. Famous Buldak restaurants are Hongcho Buldak, Hwarang Buldak, and Hwaro Buldak. Buldak has also become somewhat prominent in supermarkets, with brands such as Samyang Food creating Buldak-flavored ramen. Buldak has led to the development of other dishes inspired from it. In recent years, however, its popularity has somewhat declined.