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Gyeongsangbuk-do lies in the southeastern region of the Korean peninsula. The area is the largest of the nation's provinces, accounting for 19.1% of the total land of Korea, and also 31 times that of Seoul. Gyeongsangbuk-do is also a microcosm of Korean culture from the iron culture to the modern industrial culture.
Compared to other regions of Korea, the cuisine of Gyeongsangbuk-do is relatively simple with fewer seasonings, but has unique qualities of its own. The fact that the region has long been the center of the national spirit has a lot to do with these qualities. Gyeongsangbuk-do was the hometown of some of the greatest and most influential philosophers and Confucian scholars, most of whom were strong advocates of living a life of austerity and simplicity. The people of this region followed suit, putting fewer side dishes on the table, and avoiding fatty foods. Just because their everyday meals are simpler and use fewer ingredients than those of other regions doesn't mean that they lack flavor. For centuries, Gyeongsangbuk-do has mostly been a farming community, and the locals mastered the skills of fermenting soy sauce and soybean paste to mix with the vegetables and grains they grew on their farms nestled between mountains. Just across the mountains is the East Sea, a rich source of seafood for grills and stir-frying. These fresh and fermented foods form a major and indispensable part of Korean cuisine.
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