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(Part 1) Yakgwa Craze! In the Joseon Dynasty, Eating It Could Result in 80 Strokes of Caning?

by juseong kim 12 Feb 2024

🍯 Recently, Yakgwa has become quite trendy!🍯 
It's a traditional Korean confectionery that's sweet and delicious, widely appealing without much division in preference.
These qualities seem to have fueled its increasing popularity.

Kini also loves Yakgwa so much that once he starts eating, he can easily finish several pieces right there. 😋 He's eaten so much that during festivals, he's even been scolded by adults to stop eating.

Did you know that this friendly and delicious Yakgwa was once considered a luxurious delicacy during the Joseon Dynasty? Today, let's learn more about Yakgwa!

Yakgwa Craze! In the Joseon Dynasty, Eating It Could Result in 80 Strokes of Caning-part1


Yakgwa, which is common now, was a luxury item in the Joseon Dynasty?

The first appearance of Yakgwa dates back to the Goryeo Dynasty. During this era, Buddhism, which prohibits the taking of life, was the state religion, so offering meat and fish to Buddha was not permissible.

Instead, Yakgwa began to be offered as a precious ritual item.

At that time, Yakgwa was also known by another name. It was called 'Yumilgwa,' using the terms 'Yu (油)' meaning sesame oil, and 'Mil (蜜)' meaning honey. Made with expensive ingredients like flour, oil, and honey, it was a luxury item not easily accessible to everyone.

Despite being a luxury, its deliciousness made Yakgwa popular, spreading its fame from Goryeo to the Yuan Dynasty. According to records from the Yuan Dynasty, Yakgwa from Goryeo, referred to as 'Goryeobyeong,' was highly favored and even featured on banquet tables in Yuan, indicating its immense popularity.

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