Monday, June 3, 2013

Fresh Anchovy Dishes and Festivals Put Namhae into Tourism Radar

At this time of the year, fishermen in Namhae, South Gyeongsang Province, of South Korea  are busy catching anchovies, a regional specialty. To coincide with the fishing season, a festival is held in the picturesque southern port of Mijo, and it drew some 650,000 visitors from across the country last weekend according to the source said.

As the fishing boats slowly returned to the shore, seagulls hovered above, hinting at the generous catches of the day that lay entangled on their glistening decks. As soon as the boats docked at the wharf, the anchovies were taken to a wholesale market nearby which lies beside the festival venue.

Visitors gobbled up the salted anchovies and anchovy sashimi on sale, while others were afforded the chance to catch fish using their bare hands and sample roasted anchovies for free. They also got a closer look at fishermen sorting the day's catch by shaking their nets, which sent the anchovies soaring into the air for some interesting photo opportunities.

Locals enjoy raw and cooked anchovies in a variety of recipes. One popular delicacy is the fresh variety mixed with vinegar, red pepper paste and dropwort, which erases the pungent smell of the fish and replaces it with a mouth-watering dressing.

The anchovies are generally boiled and dried on deck immediately after they are drawn from the water to maintain their fresh taste, meaning that only the dried kind can usually be enjoyed on land. The bones are known for their crunchy texture and release a savory taste when chewed.

The festival is growing in popularity, with this year's visitors up 67 percent from last year, and it has now established itself as one of the area's top events. Although it has already wrapped up, visitors to the area can still enjoy "must-eat" anchovies at the port until June so don'tmiss this wonderful opportunity enjoy with your family or love one.


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