Chinese first lady Peng Liyuan has bought Korean chilli powder after her visit to Korea last week in preparation for trying to make kimchi.
Lee Seok-hyun, a lawmaker for the main opposition party New Politics Alliance for Democracy on Tuesday reported that he had dinner with Chinese Ambassador to Seoul Qiu Guohong on Monday, "and he told me that he's going to Dongdaemun Market to get chilli powder. Peng is trying to make kimchi, but didn't have time to buy chilli powder while she was here, so she asked him to buy some and send it to her."
During a luncheon hosted by President Park Geun-hye last Friday, Peng said that she has made kimchi before and is trying to improve her recipe.
On Thursday night, Peng visited Dongdaemun Market and went shopping for accessories and food, a departure from her original itinerary.
Lee said, "I was told by the ambassador that Peng enjoyed shopping in Dongdaemun when she visited Korea before she became first lady."
Xi and Peng ate ordinary Korean food such as fried rice with kimchi and doenjang jjigae (soybean paste stew) at their hotel, while being served royal court cuisine such as chogyotang, a soup with chicken and bell flower root, and sinseollo, a dish of meat and vegetables, on official occasions.
A Hotel Shilla spokesman said, "Chefs who came from China prepared their own meals for Xi, Peng and the delegates, but they asked the hotel kitchen to make some Korean dishes such as bibimbap (rice with assorted vegetables) and samgyetang (chicken soup with ginseng)."