Thursday, March 17, 2011

kimchi bokkeumbap with kalbi (김치 볶음밥 with 갈비)

kimchi bokkeumbap (fried rice)
taken by my new droid incredible :D my point and shoot had no juice.

ask people who've eaten korean food before, and i can almost guarantee that they will recognize kimchi and kalbi (galbi). kimchi, as most of you know, is a fermented vegetable dish that is most typically made with cabbage and red chili peppers. kalbi is soy sauce-marinated short ribs, often prepared on the grill. combine these two delicious korean staples in a fried rice and your mouth is bound to water. right before spring break, all of my food (about $70 worth of new groceries) went bad when my fridge shut off while i was out. i told myself that i'd go grocery shopping at home before returning to the univ this past weekend, but that didn't pan out. luckily, my mom packed me two different kinds of kimchi (homemade. my mom's B.A.), kalbi and japanese curry. ergo, i've been living on that janks since monday. it has been a delicious few days, but i'm gonna have to run to the grocery store soon. who wants to take me?! no, really. i'm carless. please post in the comments or text me. HAHAH.

kimchi fried rice is salty, spicy, and full of texture (slight crunch of kimchi, chewiness of the rice, and tender short ribs that still have a bite). it's extremely savory and packed with umami. i topped mine with a sunny-side up egg because i'm a naughty fatty like that. mixing in the runny yolk = priceless. the recipe is stupid easy to boot.

kimchi bokkeumbap (kimchi fried rice or 김치 볶음밥)
  • sesame oil or vegetable oil. better yet, a combo of both (veg oil will raise smoking point of the flavorful sesame oil)!
  • kimchi, chopped into bite-sized pieces
  • cooked kalbi or other meat of choice (spam is classic. i <3 spam)
  • cooked rice, preferably a day old (basically, chilled/cold rice-- short to medium grain works well, but so do long-grain varieties such as jasmine)
1. Heat a pan (preferably a wok) on medium-high to high and add enough vegetable oil, sesame oil or equal parts of both to barely cover the bottom.
2. When hot, add kimchi and saute till slightly translucent and less raw. Add kalbi and saute until warmed through.
3. Feel free to add a few teaspoons of gochujang or kimchi liquid at this point if you want more flavor and/or moisture, but remember that you don't want to make your rice soggy. Then, add rice and stir-fry till liquid is absorbed and everything is combined.

Optional: top with an egg, roasted seaweed (gim gui, or 김구이), furikake, etc. also, play around with adding diff veggies or even tofu!
Note: if your kimchi isn't overripened or flavorful enough, feel free to saute minced garlic with the kimchi and adjust salt content after adding rice.

random food fact of the day (via wikipedia): Gim (Korean-style seaweed) that has been grown for 50 days is considered best for consumption, as the color and flavor are at their best.