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Bibimbap(esque) Bowl

Bibimbap Bowl

I have now made this twice, and greatly enjoyed it both times. It is completely inauthentic but the heart wants what the heart wants. There is not -- as far as I can tell -- any restaurant catering to Korean food on the Cape. Still, where there is Gochujang (Korean chili paste), there is hope, so I make a Bibimbap inspired rice bowl when cravings hit and am very happy while eating it.

More than a recipe, this is a template so that you can adapt this to what you have in your fridge. The sauce is what made it both times.

1/3 cup gochujang (can be purchased in most supermarket International food aisles these days, and is worth buying for this, which is addictive, and to add to BBQ sauce or to slather on wings)

2 tsps toasted sesame oil

2 tsps

2 tsps rice wine vinegar

Whisk all ingredients together.

Check for seasoning, add a bit more vinegar if needed.

Set aside until ready to use.

As far as the template goes, first you will need some steamed Japanese rice. Then you will need a variety of vegetables.

For bowl one (above):

I roasted cubed firm tofu, zucchini, eggplant, green onions, carrots and radishes with some avocado oil in a 450 oven for 25 minutes. While these were roasting, I rehydrated some dried mushrooms by boiling them up in a stock of soy sauce, sake and sugar, which I then drained, and steamed some dandelion greens. Once the vegetables were roasted, I plated them as above with the rice, tucked some homemade daikon pickle into the vegetable circle and drizzled everything with the sauce. A dusting of furikake and sesame seeds and I was good to go.

For bowl 2 (below):

I roasted halved okra, yellow squash coins, whole green onions with the root end removed and some white onion slices because that is what I had in the fridge. When the tray came out of the oven, I tossed the vegetables in the sauce. Kimchi would have been nice, but I was out, so I steamed some kale which I then drizzled in a little sesame oil and lemon juice. Spinach would work well too.

I knew that I needed something sharp so I marinated julienned carrots and daikon root in a mixture of one tablespoon of rice wine vinegar and one teaspoon of granulated sugar for half an hour, tossing from time to time. Cucumber would work for this as well.

I put all of those things on a bed of hot plain rice, each in its own corner and added a fried egg which I made by adding two teaspoons of vegetable oil to a pan along with a teaspoon of chili crisp oil. As soon as the oil was really hot and shimmering, I broke the egg into the pan and let it cook for thirty seconds and allowing it to cook for another thirty on the other side before removing it with a slotted spoon. This cooking method makes for a crispy and tangy lacy egg white and a warm but not yet set yolk.

I added the egg to the bowl and sprinkled the whole thing generously with furikake (plain seaweed would work as well.) As soon as I stirred everything together, the egg broke and the hot rice finished cooking the egg yolk.

No matter how you make this, with egg or without, with whatever you have in the fridge, each bite has salty, spicy, tangy elements -- this is soooo good!

Bibimbap Bowl


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