Thursday, April 24, 2014

My Version of Bibimbap 비빔밥 (Korean Mixed Rice)

I realise that I have not made kimchi for more than a year. When was the last time I made it? Seems to be 4 Dec 2012.

So last week, I finally made a batch of homemade kimchi and ate it to my heart's content with piping hot porridge, in fact I have it almost everyday for lunch. I seem to be making up for what I could not enjoy during 9 months of pregnancy and the following 1 month of "confinement" after the baby was born. (The confinement period is the period just after giving birth when chinese women are prohibited from eating many things which are deemed too cooling for the body, especially cabbage.) Nowadays I eat almost everything under the sun, so that my newborn can enjoy differents kinds of delicious foods from all over the world, and that includes Korean food. I am not Korean by the way. :)

Since I just finished making my kimchi last weekend and while I am still in my "korean mood", I thought I would try to attempt making a typical Korean dish which has been on my to-do-list for a very long time - Bibimbap 비빔밥. By the way, "Bibim" means mixing and "Bap" means rice in Korean. I have only tasted the real thing once when I went to Korea on a short trip with my parents 10 years ago. I am not sure whether what I am making resembles the real McCoy since I can't recall the taste anymore and I don't have the luxury of eating at Korean restaurants in Belgium, there are none anyway. Moreover, I didn't have some of the ingredients called for in the recipe such as gosari and radish, so I tried to make do with what I could find in my local supermart and cook them to the best of my ability. Luckily I have gochujang (korean red pepper paste) at my disposal since I bought it a while ago and now I could put it to good use. :)

So here is the recipe adapted from Aeri's Kitchen and Maangchi
For 3 to 4 servings

Key ingredients
beansprouts (packet of 250g)
carrots, julienned (packet of 250g, but probably 200g will do)
spinach (packet of 200g)
kimchi (homemade)
cooked rice
4 eggs for baking sunny-side-up

Marinade for the minced meat
500g ground beef or pork
1 tsp light soya sauce
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp chinese cooking wine
1 tsp sesame oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
pinch of salt and pepper

Sauce ingredients
3 tbsp gochujang (red pepper paste)
1/4 tsp light soya sauce
1 tsp korean brown rice vinegar
1 tsp sugar
3/4 tsp sesame seeds (omitted)
1 tsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp minced garlic

1. Mix minced meat with the marinade and set it aside. Cook some rice while you start preparing other ingredients.

2. Rinse the bean sprouts 3 times. Cook the bean sprouts in a pot of slightly salted boiling water, and cook for 10 min or more until the sprouts are cooked and still taste crunchy. Remove from pot, drain and season with 1 tsp of sesame oil, 1 tsp of light soya sauce and a pinch of salt.

3. Wash the spinach and scald them briefly in boiling water for 1 min. Remove from pot, drain and rinse with cold water. Then squeeze out the water to prevent the spinach turning soggy. Then season with 1 tsp of sesame oil, 1 tsp of light soya sauce and a pinch of salt.

4. For the carrots, supposed to fry them briefly in a wok, but since my carrots were bought from supermart and were finely julienned, I didn't fry them and I didn't season them.

5. Add a little cooking oil to a wok and stir-fry the minced meat until it is fully cooked. Set aside.

6. Fry the eggs sunny-side-up one by one and set aside.

7. Prepare the sauce by mixing the gochujang red pepper paste with the other ingredients.

8. Assembly : In a large bowl (best if you have a dolsot or korean stone bowl for serving bibimbap), place 1 cup of cooked rice in the centre and place a sunny-side-up egg and some minced meat on top of the rice. Arrange all of the veggies on the sides of the bowl surrounding the rice. Then drizzle some sauce on top of the egg and meat.

9. Finally, just mix everything up and eat to your heart's content!

Voila, so that's how I made my Bibimbap ala Miss B. My version of bibimbap is really an improvised, mish-mash version, I hope you like the looks of it. :)

I am submitting this post to Asian Food Fest: Korea, hosted by Sharon of Feats of Feasts.


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