This mixed rice with vegetables and beef recipe is know as bibimbap in Korea. It is hard not to fall in love with bibimbap. The bed of pearly white rice adorned with a ring of colourful vegetables and beef, and a bright yellow egg, the shining star in the centre. It is almost hypnotic. Like a lot of Korean dishes, individual ingredients are plated up beautifully so you can fully appreciate each one, and then, with gleeful abandon, you madly mix everything together. The possibilities for toppings are endless, so feel free to use your favourite ingredients – spinach and onion also work very well.
– 400g short-grain white rice
– 300g beef sirloin, very thinly sliced
– 2½ tbsp soy sauce
– 2 tsp roasted sesame seed oil
– 3 garlic cloves, crushed
– 3 spring onions, very finely chopped
– ½ tsp ground black pepper
– 150g carrots, cut into very thin strips
– 300g courgette, quartered lengthways and thinly sliced
– 150g cucumber, halved lengthways, deseeded and thinly sliced
– 150g daikon radish, peeled and cut into thin strips
– 150g bean sprouts
– 200g shiitake mushrooms, sliced
– 300g spinach
– 4 eggs
– roasted sesame seed oil, to season
– soy sauce, to season
– sunflower or vegetable oil, to fry
– toasted sesame seeds, to serve
– few leaves of salad cress, to serve
– 3 tbsp gochujang chilli paste
– 1 tbsp soy sauce
– 1 tbsp roasted sesame seed oil
– 2 garlic cloves, crushed
– 1 tbsp sugar or maple syrup
In a bowl, combine together all the sauce ingredients and set aside. In another bowl, mix together the ingredients for the beef marinade, add the sliced beef, cover and set aside for 30–60 minutes.
Cook the rice according to the packet instructions. Keep warm. Meanwhile, fill a large pan with water and bring it to a rolling boil. One by one, blanch the carrots, courgette, cucumber and radish for 1 minute and the bean sprouts for 2½ minutes. Use a slotted spoon or sieve to remove them from the water and drain fully. Season each vegetable with ½ a teaspoon of roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce, keeping the vegetables separate at all times.
Heat 1 tablespoon of sunflower oil in a pan. Add in the mushrooms and stir-fry over a high heat for 4–5 minutes until softened. Remove from the pan and season with ½ a teaspoon of roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce.
In the same pan, add in the spinach and sprinkle over 2 teaspoons of water. Fry over a high heat for a few minutes, stirring all the time, until the spinach has wilted. Remove the spinach, squeeze out any excess water and season as before with the ½ teaspoon of roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce. In Korea, these vegetables are served at room temperature so don’t worry about keeping them warm.
In the same pan, add the marinated beef. Stir-fry over a high heat for 3–5 minutes, until the sauce has reduced and the meat is cooked through. In a clean frying pan, fry the eggs to your liking.
Serve the hot rice in 4 individual bowls. Place 1 egg onto the centre of the rice, then arrange the vegetables and meat around it. Sprinkle over some sesame seeds and salad cress and serve with the gochujang sauce. Start with a couple of spoonfuls of the sauce and mix everything together well. Add more gochujang sauce to taste.
This recipe is from Our Korean Kitchen, written by critically acclaimed food writer Jordan and his Korean wife Rejina, a collection of classic and well-loved Korean dishes. Jordan Bourke is the author of the well-received The Guilt-Free Gourmet cookbook. He was named the winner of the K-Food Festival, a competition searching for the UK’s best Korean chef, and has travelled extensively in Korea, learning from a number of its well-respected chefs. Jordan’s wife, Rejina Pyo is an eminent fashion designer and proud of her culinary heritage. She helped introduce Jordan to authentic Korean ingredients and flavour.