Prep 20 mins
Cook 25 mins
This recipe is from a chef who operated the restaurant, Korean Temple Cuisine, in New York, New York. Bibimbap (mixed up rice) history is lost to time but some theories abound. One theory was when royal cooks attempted to assemble something beautiful under less-than-ideal conditions for a 13th-century king on the run from Mongolian invaders. Another theory is that it was a harvest time dish eaten from a communal bowl by farmers working out in the field.
- 3⁄4 cup korean spicy chili paste (gochujang)
- 6 tablespoons carbonated lemon-lime beverage, such as Sprite
- 3 tablespoons korean soybean paste (doenjang) or 3 tablespoons miso
- 2 tablespoons corn syrup
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 2 tablespoons garlic cloves, minced
- 2 tablespoons fresh ginger, minced
- 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
- 1 1⁄2 teaspoons sesame seeds
- 4 ounces mung bean sprouts
- 8 ounces Baby Spinach
- 12 dried shiitake mushrooms
- 6 tablespoons canola oil
- 3 teaspoons sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons garlic cloves, minced
- 2 1⁄2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
- kosher salt and black pepper, to taste
- 6 ounces fiddleheads, cut into 3 inch pieces (bracken fern-gosari optional)
- 2 small korean squash or 2 small zucchini, halved cut crosswise into 1/4 inch thick slices
- 2 medium carrots, julienned
- 1⁄4 small daikon radish, julienned
- 3⁄4 teaspoon sesame seeds
- 8 ounces firm tofu, cut into 1/2 inch thick slabs
- 4 cups cooked white sushi rice
- 1 ounce sesame oil
- 4 sunny-side-up eggs
- 2 leaves chicory lettuce, thinly sliced
- 2 leaves green leaf lettuce, thinly sliced
- 1 scallion, thinly sliced
- In a bowl, whisk gochujang, lemon-lime soda, miso, corn syrup, sesame oil, garlic, ginger, vinegar and sesame seeds until smooth. Set aside.
- Bring a 4-qt saucepan of water to a boil and add sprouts. Cook until crisp tender (30 seconds). Transfer to a bowl of ice water, drain and dry with paper towels. Set aside.
- Repeat procedure with spinach (squeeze out as much liquid as possible when draining). When finished, pour boiling water into a bowl and add mushrooms. Let soften for 30 minutes. Drain, remove stems, and slice 1/4 inch thick. Set aside.
- Heat 1 tbsp canola oil and 1/2 tsp sesame oil in a 10 inch nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 1 tsp garlic, 1/2 tsp ginger and mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until hot (2 minutes). Transfer to a bowl. Set aside.
- Repeat procedure, using same amounts of canola oil, sesame oil, garlic, and ginger with the gosari, squash, carrot and radish. Season each with salt and pepper. Set each aside in separate bowls and add 1/4 tsp sesame seeds to radishes.
- Add 1 1/2 tsp garlic, 1/4 tsp sesame oil, salt, and pepper each to sprouts and spinach and stir well.
- Heat remaining canola oil in skillet and add tofu. Cook, turning once, until browned (4-6 minutes). Transfer to a plate and cut each in half.
- When ready to serve, place 1 cup rice each in center of 4 bowls, drizzle a little sesame oil over each mound of rice and top each with a fried egg. Place 1/4 of mushrooms in a mound in each bowl over the rice.
- Working clockwise, arrange 1/4 each squash, carrot, radish, spinach, sprouts, gosari, chicory, and lettuce. Place tofu on lettuces and sprinkle with sesame seeds and scallions. Serve with sauce on the side.
- Each diner should stir their bibimbap vigorously before eating. Bibimbap is considered Korean therapy food which makes sense given that the notion of food as medicine is a fundamental one in Korean cooking and the stirring helps to relieve stress.