Dog Day Picnic(伏-)
Bokdarim (Kor. 복달임, lit. boiling on Dog Day) refers to the custom of making a short excursion to a cool valley or riverside spot on Sambok (Kor. 삼복, Chin. 三伏, Three Dog Days, three hottest days in the sixth and seventh lunar months) and consuming special dishes such as dog meat soup, chicken and ginseng soup, and red bean porridge. These activities were supposed to help one cope better with the severe summer heat. The custom is also known as bongnori (Kor. 복놀이, lit. pleasure on Dog Day).
During the hottest time of the year, the kings of Joseon (1392-1910) bestowed on the high-ranking ministers beef and ice as a gift to stay healthy. Bokdarim was mostly practiced by common people who could not afford beef. They usually went to a nearby valley, dipped their feet in the cold water of a stream, or visited a seashore and took a sand bath. Afterwards they cooked foods which they considered nourishing for the body. Dog meat was preferred because in folk belief heat-related problems should be treated with more heat, and the dog was an animal with abundant heat. Accordingly, consuming dog meat was thought to provide people with the energy and nutrients that they would miss during the hottest period in summer. This belief also explains one of the common names for dog meat soup, bosintang (Kor. 보신탕, Chin. 補身湯), which literally means “stamina soup”.