Beef Kimbap (쇠고기 김밥)
Kimbap is the equivalent to the Japanese sushi. IMHO though? I prefer kimbap, I mean, it's seasoned with sesame oil, and I'm a sucker for that darn aroma. Sushi rice on the other hand, is seasoned with sushi vinegar, which sad to say, is a little harder to get excited over.
I've made sushi rolls tons of times before, and never thought to post a recipe on it. Then again, I cook quite a fair bit, since I'm still religously making my own bento lunch (for the past year or so! *pats self on back), just that I tend not to photograph those often since it's at a goddamn early hour (seriously, who has the time to style any food when you're rushing around the kitchen trying to get as many stuff done before dashing to the toilet to shower before work?!?) *Breathe. Focus. Where was I again? Right, kimbap.
These can be a pain in the arse to make, because there's just so many prep work involved with the different ingredients. But the pain is neccessary cos at the end of the day, you will be rewarded with a plateful of kimbap that is just so addictive. I won't judge if you say you inhale more than you rightly should. I do it too. All the time. It is so easy to just pop pop pop them into your mouth, one after another in quick succession. Kudos to all the Korean 아줌마 who make them all the time, it's definitely a sign of homemade love when you think of all the work involved in this simple dish.
Kimbap taste the best on the day it is made, they don't really keep well. So, just make a huge plateful, and share. I mean, Koreans are big on sharing food. If you ask me, I'd say it's right there, embedded into their food culture. Or better still, go on a picnic and bring along some kimbap. Your friends/partner/family is going to love you for that.
Beef Kimbap (쇠고기 김밥)
nori seaweed sheets
200g marinated beef (recipe below)
1 bag of spinach
pickled radish, sliced into strips
1 cup carrot, julienned
3 eggs, lightly beaten
7-8 cups sushi rice, cooked
toasted sesame seeds, for garnish
200g minced beef
2 cloves garlic
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp sugar
Mix all the ingredients together and set aside to marinate for at least a half hour.
Heat some oil in a pan and saute the marinated beef. Set aside to cool.
In the meantime, boil a pot of water, lightly rinse the spinach (if it's not a bag of pre-washed spinach), add to water and blanch for a few seconds. Drain, squeezing to remove excess water. Mix in some sesame oil and a pinch of salt. Set aside.
Saute the julienned carrots lightly with a pinch of salt. Set aside.
Mix the eggs with 1/2 tbsp mirin, 1/8 tsp soy sauce. Heat a skillet on med-low heat and lightly oil it. Pour the egg mixture in to form a omelette. Flip over to cook the other side till cooked thoroughly. Remove from pan, slice into long strips.
When your rice has just finished cooking (I used a rice cooker), mix in sesame oil and salt to taste. Leave to cool.
In the meantime, start assembling your mise en place. Rolling kimbap is not unlike a factory production line. Line all your kimbap ingredients on one huge platter if possible.
Start by laying a sheet of nori seaweed onto your sushi mat. Place rice on half the sheet and flatten (don't use too much, just enough to cover the seaweed will do). Place a little of each ingredient (spinach, beef, carrots, egg, pickled radish in the centre. Roll up your kimbap roll tightly. Set aside. Repeat till you have a stack of kimbap rolls and have used up all your ingredients.
Lightly brush the kimbap roll with sesame oil to give it a nice shine. Slice into rounds (I got about 8 pieces per roll). Arrange on a plate, garnish with toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.