I’ve caught the Kpop bug. I’ve officially crossed over to the dark side.
I am Kpop Siao.
For my non-Hokkien-speaking reader(s), Siao means crazy. Ergo, Kpop crazy. For the last half a year, I’ve been bopping and shaking my ass to songs I will never understand and singing along with every chorus with what I think are the words. God forbid a native Korean should ever hear me.
How did I get to become addicted to the genre? After all, Switzerland isn’t exactly exposed to Kpop. No, Psy doesn’t count! I have my mum to thank for that. She started me on Korean dramas; dramas have soundtracks; these soundtracks are available on Youtube. And we all know what happens when you start clicking on videos on Youtube; you start a video at 9pm, next thing you know it’s 2am (see what I did there?) and you’re clicking on “just one more video”. Right……..
The songs aren’t the only thing the dramas got me hooked on. I get hungry every time I watch an episode of [insert random korean drama title]. They have the best looking food EVER!! I’ve never wanted to go to Seoul so badly before and it’s really JUST for the food.
I loooove Korean food. Or at least the ones I’ve had, which is really what I’ve been making based on recipes I find online. I really have no reference as to how authentic they are but authentic or not, they’re delicious.
Bibimbap was one of the first korean dishes I tried and the whole family loves it. Remember how my daughter hates zucchini? She would eat it with no complaints in Bibimbap. Even spinach! I have a confession to make though. It’s a time consuming dish with all the julienne-ing (is that a word?) and separate cooking of every vegetable and meat components of the dish. So what I usually do is really just cook it all together in one pan. You’re going to mix it all together anyway!!
BUT!! For you, I did it the proper way today. For you, I’ll do anything. I’ll even throw in this WTF song my fav Kpop band sang about Bibimbap. Don’t judge me!
Back story: They recorded this song for a musical they did with three 4 year-olds as part of a reality show. You can watch the whole musical here. *edit: there were some issues with Reader displaying video instead of featured image. That’s why I had to trash the original post and repost with a still image of the video with a link.
The beauty of Bibimbap is that you can literally put anything in it. I’m not sure if Koreans use woodear in their cuisine at all but I love the crunch of it, so I threw it in. You can also easily make this a vegetarian dish by leaving out the meat. The only thing you really must have in it is Gochujang, korean hot pepper paste. And you can easily get this from any asian grocery stores. (Obviously, my kids can’t handle the spice yet so I serve them theirs with mushroom soy sauce instead.) The only problem with Bibimbap is that there is no such thing as a small serving. But then again, that’s not necessarily a bad thing 😉
Bibimbap (Korean mixed rice)
- 1 cup rice
- 1 medium sized zucchini, cut into strips approx. ¼ inch or ½ cm thick
- 1 large carrot, julienned
- 1 cup beansprouts, picked and washed
- 100g frozen spinach, thawed
- 1 handful dried woodear
- 200 g ground meat
- 2 egg
- 2 tsp minced garlic
- 1 tsp grated ginger
- Soy sauce
- Sesame oil
- Rinse and cook rice.
- Soak woodear for 15 minutes. Remove from water and give it a good scrub with 1 tsp of salt. Rinse and julienne. Set aside.
- In a small saucer, combine garlic and ginger with a tsp of sesame oil. Set aside.
- In a bowl, combine ground meat with 2 tsp soy sauce, 1 tsp sesame oil, ¼ tsp sugar, dash of pepper and ½ tsp garlic/ginger mixture. Set aside to marinate.
- Heat oil in a frying pan over medium heat and sauté zucchini till tender. Adding a tablespoon of water at a time to avoid burning and caramelisation.
- When tender, season with a splash of soy, sugar, pepper and the garlic/ginger mixture. Season to taste. Set aside.
- Repeat this with the carrots, spinach, woodear and ground meat.
- Blanch the bean sprouts for a couple of minutes until just tender. Drain sprouts and put in a bowl. Season with salt, sugar, pepper and sesame oil. Set aside. We’re using salt instead of soy sauce to keep the sprouts nice and white.
- Fry an egg sunny side up.
- Spoon rice into a large bowl and place the egg on top of the rice. Carefully arrange the vegetables and meat around the yolk and serve with as much or as little Gochujang as you like.
- Now mix it all up and wonder why you bothered to cook everything separately in the first place. Enjoy!