How to celebrate being single in Korea on Black Day
If you’re interested in Korean culture, you have probably heard of the Korean version of Valentine's Day. February 14th is the day women express their love by giving chocolate to men. White Day takes place on March 14th and is the day men express their love in return by giving candy to a woman. These special days encourage people to confess their love, but there is also a day specifically designed for single people in Korea, Black Day.
This day falls on April 14th each year. On this day, singles who didn't receive any gifts on Valentine's Day or White Day get together to eat Korean black bean sauce noodles (Jajangmyeon) to commiserate with each other about being single. No one really knows who invented this strange sounding day. Nonetheless, Black Day is one of the most commonly celebrated days by many Koreans even though it is not a national holiday.
Some serious singles even dress themselves up all in black and drink black coffee after having the black bean sauce noodles. I’ve never seen these extreme cases in person, but observing people doing this would be very interesting.
Occasionally, you even see people who are not single having this black bean sauce noodle dish. While you cannot stop people from doing what they want, there’s a supposed curse that if a couple eats black bean noodles together, a jinx will break them apart. Doesn’t that sound scary?
What plans do you have on April 14th? Whether you are single or not, why not join this unique modern Korean custom for a bit of fun? You can buy Korean black bean sauce noodles (Jajangmyeon) from a Korean or Chinese restaurant in your local area, or you can make them from scratch at home using this delicious recipe.
Sue Pressey is the founder, author, cook, and photographer of the popular Korean food blog, My Korean Kitchen. Sue shares her tested Korean food recipes with step by step mouth watering photos and cooking tips and introduces Korean food culture to the world.