What is Golbaengi 골뱅이 ?
Whelks are sea snails that are used in Korean cuisine most often to make the dish golbaengi muchim, a cold spicy noodle dish that is topped with whelks. They are sold fresh. However, the most common way to purchase whelks is canned. Golbaeing-i is very much like escargot; it's an acquired taste and requires pretty lavish seasoning. Interestingly, 80-90% of the whelk consumed in Korea is caught, canned, and exported by UK.
Where and What To Buy
Fresh whelks can be purchased at some fish markets.
Golbaengi (whelk) in shell
Canned whelk can be purchased at Korean and Asian grocery stores as well as some specialty grocery stores.
How to Use/Cook
Canned Golbaengi (whelk) come already fully cooked and seasoned. It is a bit on the sweet side. Just remove from liquid and slice and add to recipe like my Golbaengi Muchim.
Freshly boiled Golbaengi can be simply eaten with some Cho Gochujang (sweet and sour sauce).
How to Clean/Store
Store canned whelks in a pantry that is cool and dry.
Some Koreans say Golbaengi is good for the skin but no scientific evidence could be found.