Chinese Characters in Korean Cuisine

Hi guys,

Since my second child was born, my Korean language studies have all but completely stalled.  However, my wife really loves Korean food and likes to cook it often, while I enjoy reading the packaging.  This is a package of ramen noodles, or ramyeon (라면),1 that we bought recently.

If you look carefully there’s a mix of Korean letters (hangeul) and Chinese characters. Although Korean culture doesn’t really use Chinese characters much anymore, they still often appear in advertising and other such things. The Chinese characters, which I happen to be able to read thanks to study of Japanese language (which does use them), are 中華麺 which just means “Chinese-style noodles”. To the right of that, in smaller letters is the Korean chung-hwa myron (충화면) which just says the same thing.

Also on the upper-right in green is the Chinese character 生 which in this context probably means “fresh”.

Anyhow, just something interesting I wanted to share.  🙂

1 These are not the cheap dried noddles either. These are genuine ramen/ramyeon egg noodles. You can make a pretty close approximation by boiling regular spaghetti noodles in water and a little baking soda. I wouldn’t recommend doing that too often, but it does actually come out pretty tasty.


Author: Doug

A fellow who dwells upon the Pale Blue Dot who spends his days obsessing over things like Buddhism, KPop music, foreign languages, BSD UNIX and science fiction.

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