Korea, Japan – Bibimbap / Korean Mixed Rice Bowl

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by Evelyn Brutz

Bibimbap is a dish from Korean national cuisine. It is actually a rice dish which means Mixed Rice. In this dish, many different ingredients are added like stir-fried vegetables, cooked meat chunks, raw vegetable salad, noodles, spices and herbs, eggs, etc. This is by the addition of these elements known to be as mixed rice. Rice is of any kind can be used depends on preferences like white rice, short-grain rice, bran rice, etc. You can add meat of chicken, fish, beef into this dish. Vegetables like carrots, mushrooms, zucchini, scallions, cilantro, potatoes are added. Some vegetables are cooked like fried and then added, some vegetables like scallions, etc are added in the raw form to get crunchiness and freshness of the dish. This is a huge bowl of rice dish having many elements to complement this rice bowl. Sauces like mirin, soya sauce, tahini is added even to this rice bowl to enhance the flavors.

Rice is layered at the bottom of the bowl to serve, then cooked elements like stir-fried vegetables also known as NAMUL are added on the top. Then fermented beans like KIMCHI is added, for tanginess and spiciness GOCHUJANG is added. Meat-cooked chunks to finish the look and ready to serve.

HISTORY OF BIBIMBAP

History of this dish is not well known but we have some information related to same dishes and their origin. From there we can guess may be this dish is from that particular tradition.

BAPCHAN, is a dish in which rice is mixed with other dishes like dried beef, stir-fried vegetables to present it as a side dish. During festivals like Rites of Mountain God and Village God, these dishes were presented as a ”MEAL PRESENTED TO GOD”.

JEONJU BIBIMBAP is old dish, originating from ancestors rites. This is said by many scholars that Bibimbap is originated from that time.

BIBIMBAP was first time recorded in a book of JOSEON.

DIFFERENT VERSIONS OF BIBIMBAP

Yi Gyu- Gyeong wrote many version of bibimbap in his book : COLLECTED WORKS OF OJU

Hoe Bibimbap

Hoe bibimbap is a dish, which refers to be a variety of raw meat. HOE is food in Korean cuisine, in which raw meat, raw vegetables and raw food is served.

HOE : A portion of raw food in Korean Cuisine .

Shad Bibimbap

Shad is a species of fish, which is very popular in Korean cuisine. This fish is added to this meal as the main ingredients after fish and admire the taste of rice with Shad.

SHAD : Shad is also known as dotted Gizard Shad . In Japan, it is also known as KONOSHIRO.

Prawn Bibimbap

Prawn is the best meat served in Korean cuisine, so it is not possible to serve this special meat into this dish. Like the main ingredient Rice, Prawns is cooked and served on top of the rice bowl. Prawns can be grilled, fried, steamed, and then added to the dish.

Wild Chives Bibimbap

Wild chives is also known as ALLIUM MONANTHUM, Korean wild chives. This is a spring vegetable used worldwide in many dishes. It has a strong onion flavor but a thin leaves-like shape. They are 10 cm long and can be used freshly in many dishes.

Gim Bibimbap

Gim is a edible seaweed used in many Korean dishes. This is also known as KIM or Romanized Kim. It is a species of Red Algae that is present in Sheet form and used in many Korean dishes.

SELECTION OF INGREDIENTS IN BIBIMBAP

The basic thing to focus on the selection of ingredients that goes well with the combination. Sometimes, the combination of food can go wrong together so we need to focus on the selection of ingredients

There are the main idea of ingredients from which we can select the sub ingredients and added in the dish.

RICE

There are many varieties of rice sold through out the world. The choice of rice is totally depends on the cook and the guests. You can either have short grain rice, long grain rice, bran rice etc.

Rice varieties are :

  • White rice
  • Bran rice
  • Arborio rice
  • Basmati rice
  • Short grain rice
  • Sticky rice

MEAT VARIEITES

  • Prawns
  • Salted salmon
  • Shrimp
  • Chicken
  • Pork
  • Fish
  • Octopus
  • Beef
  • Mutton / lamb

VEGETABLES

Vegetables can be of any type is added into this dish. But I am giving you the list of popular one in Korea.

  • Spinach
  • Sprouts
  • Mushrooms
  • Spring onions
  • Carrots
  • Mu ( radish )
  • Chives
  • Scallions
  • Cucumber
  • Doraji
  • Cabbage
  • Capsicum
  • Aehobak

GOCHUJANG

Gochujang is red pepper paste, used to add spiciness to the dish. It is a fermented paste or red chilies that have spicy, sweet, and savory paste. Gochujang is a chili powder that is mixed with Fermented soya bean paste known as Meju, salt, and barley powder.

EGG

Egg can be fried and boiled serve on the top of the presented bowl of rice.

INGREDIENTS OF BIBIMBAP

  • White long grain rice : 1 bowl
  • Zucchini : 2 long cut
  • Olive oil : 4 tablespoons
  • Salt : 1 teaspoon
  • Pepper : 2 tablespoons
  • Cucumber : 1 long cut
  • Carrots : 1 chopped
  • Scallions : 1/2 cup
  • Corn : 1/2 cup
  • Shiitake mushrooms : 1/2 cup
  • Eggs : 2
  • Red pepper paste : 1/2 cup

Beef marination

  • Beef slices : 250 grams
  • Olive oil : 4 tablespoons
  • Salt : 1 teaspoon
  • Cayenne powder : 2 tablespoons
  • Garlic chunks : 2 tablespoons
  • Soya sauce : 1/2 cup
  • Rice vinegar : 1/2 cup

COOKING METHOD

  • We have to marinate the beef with all the ingredients like salt, cayenne, soya sauce, vinegar, etc and let it set for 30 minutes.
  • On other side we have to steam our rice by adding salt in it. It required a steamer, water, salt and rice. Add rice into steamer and water with salt and cook for 20 minutes on medium temperature.
  • Rice must not be mushy.
  • Take all the vegetables, add olive oil in it with salt and stir fry them together on high flame to attain the crunchiness and full color of the vegetables.
  • Take off the beef in cooking tray or a grill pan. Start grill them until they cooked properly.
  • Take 1 egg and boil it. Other one is for frying.
  • We are getting out all elements prepared and need to assemble them.

FOR ASSEMBLING

On a bowl add rice, now add sauteed vegetables, beef grilled pieces and top up with egg. Egg either fried or boil.

Add red pepper paste and add spoonful of it on top and serve.

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