Shamefully, I’d never eaten bibimbap prior to making this dish! I’ve been dying to get down to Korean Soju for a delicious bowl, but I just haven’t got around to it. I still haven’t indulged in a traditional rendition of the dish, but this version is quite spectacular.
The Bibimbap Conundrum
I haven’t ventured into making my own bibimbap before because I just wasn’t confident I’d find gochujang anywhere. Gochujang is a chilli and fermented soy paste that’s supposed to be integral to a good bibimbap. However, when browsing through the TASTE magazine, I spotted a small write-up by Abigail Donelly on how to construct a decent bibimbap, as well as the gochujang substitute she uses – Mama O’s Premium Super Spicy Pepper Paste.
Abigail’s prawn bibimbap didn’t tickle my fancy much, so I did a little online browsing and settled on a beef mince version that admonishes my winter woes!
2 cups cooked sushi rice or any rice of your choice (leftover rice is great here!)
500g free range lean beef mince
4 Tbs soy sauce
2 Tbs sesame seed oil
4tsp brown sugar
1 clove garlic minced
4 large “braai mushrooms” sliced
2 carrots ribboned
Half a cucumber ribboned
4 free range eggs
4Tbs Mama O’s Spicy Pepper Paste to serve
Dash of sesame seed oil to serve
1. Combine mince, soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, and garlic in a bowl and allow to marinate for 30 minutes. If you haven’t cooked your rice yet, do that now too.
2. Briefly fry spinach on a high heat in a little oil, season and set aside.
3. Fry mushrooms on high heat, season and set aside.
4. Once mince is ready, heat pan to highest heat possible, and then fry mince until juices have reduced and meat is dark brown and caramelized. Set aside.
5. Quickly fry eggs, arrange rice, vegetables, and mince in large bowls, and then top with fried eggs.
6. Add a tablespoon of chiili paste to each bowl and sprinkle each dish lightly with sesame seed oil before serving.