live in a very multi-cultural area of Melbourne so I’m lucky enough to be surrounded by authentic Vietnamese, Korean, Indian and Japanese restaurants in every direction from my house. It’s supremely awesome. I eat out quite often, but sometimes I just want the delicious flavours of my local Korean joint without having to leave the house.
Bibimbap has long been an obsession of mine – it’s a Korean dish that is literally meat, rice and vegetables. The term bibimbap translates to ‘mixed rice’ which is exactly what it is. Authentic bibimbap is pretty hard to replicate – believe me I’ve tried. Cooking fernbrake (a dried Korean green that’s a key ingredient in this dish – also called gosari) so it doesn’t taste like rubbery seaweed is something I’ve never been able to master. I do a much simpler version of my own that really hits the spot when I couldn’t be bothered trundling down the street for the real thing. It uses all the traditional flavours of bibimbap but I can get all the ingredients at my local supermarket and I don’t have to trek to a specialty shop to buy rare ingredients.
1 tsp white miso paste
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp caster sugar
1 brown onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 spring onions, thinly sliced
600g lean beef mince
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 cup baby spinach
2 cups cooked brown rice
1 small carrot, cut into thin batons
1 small cucumber, cut into thin batons
1 nori sheet, finely sliced
1/4 cup sambal olek, or other chilli sauce
1 tbsp caster sugar
1 tbsp sesame oil
Combine miso paste, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, onion, garlic and spring onions in a bowl. Add beef mince, mix well to combine and marinate for 20 minutes (you can marinate it all day if you like but 20 minutes is fine).
Fry beef in a 2 tsp vegetable oil over medium-high heat, breaking up with a wooden spoon for about 3 or 4 minutes or until sealed and remove from pan.
Add 1 tsp oil to the pan and fry baby spinach for about a minute. Remove from pan.
Add remaining 1 tsp oil to pan and fry eggs, sunny-side up. Remove from pan
For the sauce, mix sambal olek, sugar, sesame oil and sesame seeds together in a small bowl. Set aside.
Assemble the bibimbap in 4 bowls – rice on the bottom, vegetables (note: carrot and cucumber are served raw), beef, sprinkle with nori and place an egg on top.
Add sauce to taste and enjoy!
You can add kimchi or any Korean-style pickled vegetables as well.
Also Korean food scares people if they haven’t tried it before but I promise, everyone loves it. If they question you, tell them to pull their head in.
Have you made any Korean dishes at home before? Are you a huge fan of Bi Bim Bap?
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