when you’re in charge of students’ fates in leadership positions, it weighs heavily on you. needless to say that it was a long day. when i have long days at work, i crave comfort food when i get home. i classify korean food under comfort foods.
i have an unhealthy obsession with korean food. i’m not entirely sure where or when it started. all i know is that i love it, and i’m always trying to learn how to make korean food in my kitchen.
i learned how to make korean food a couple years ago with a friend of mine in vermont (of all places!). she taught me how to make homemade kimchi and sookju namul (bean sprout salad). it was then i realized that korean food is totally doable in my kitchen, even though i don’t have all the proper equipment.
bibimbap is one of my favorites. there’s something about the assorted veggies and rice with the spiciness that makes my palette dance with joy. it’s traditionally made in a clay pot, but i made do, kept everything as hot as possible, plated and ate as close together as possible.
i had a hard time finding good looking bean sprouts for my bibimbap, so i substituted it with kimchi. it’s not necessarily equivalent substitution, but it is a mighty tasty one.
i’ve made this recipe over a handful of times. i may invest in a couple clay pots in the future, so i can show you an evencloser authentic style one day.
if you’ve never had korean food, try this dish. you’ll love it.
yield 4 servings
3 cups cooked white rice
handful of shittake mushrooms, sliced
1 cup green beans, trimmed and cut diagonally into bite-size pieces
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 small zucchini, julienned
1 small carrot, peeled and julienned
3 scallions, thinly sliced on the diagonal
1 sheet of toasted nori and cut into thin strips
1-2 teaspoons of asian chili garlic paste
2 teaspoons sesame oil
salt and pepper
4 eggs (one per individual serving)
blanch green beans in boiling water for 3-4 minutes and then drain. in a pan over medium heat, add 1 teaspoon of oil and stir fry the green beans for a couple minutes. remove from pan and put on plate. cover to keep warm. stir fry the carrots, zucchini, and mushrooms separately until tender. add oil, if necessary. put veggies in separate piles on the same place as the green beans. cover to keep warm.
stir together chili paste and sesame oil in a small bowl.
fry egg sunny side up in a little bit of veggie oil.
to make servings, scoop rice into bowl. arrange veggies, kimchi, and nori on top of the rice in separate piles around the perimeter. leave space in the center for the egg. add egg to center. sprinkle with salt. drizzle a little of the chili paste and sesame oil mixture over everything but the kimchi. top with scallions.
eat promptly while hot and with chopsticks. it’s the best.