While shopping at Trader Joe’s the other day, I pointed to a frozen Bibimbap package and asked my 13-year-old daughter to say the word to find out how she would pronounce it. Much to my surprise, she said it exactly as it’s meant to be pronounced: Bee-beem-bop. I was so proud, but I laughed out loud because frankly, to the American ear it has a silly sing-songy ring to it.
However, bibimbap is no laughing matter. In fact, it’s a kind of comfort food taken very seriously in Korea. This is the kind of recipe that requires a bit of mindfulness. But there’s no need for intimidation or anxiety if you stay organized and use your time wisely. For instance, while marinating the steak, prepare the vegetables and the rice. There’s also no need to avoid it if you don’t have all the vegetables or prefer to make the vegetarian version of this rather versatile and flexible dish. Even the lack of sesame seeds and mung beans doesn’t detract from the satisfying flavors and textures. However, the recipe is best made with the fried egg, which combined with the kimchi and gochujang, makes a delicious and original sauce.
- 8 oz. (230 g) flank steak, thinly sliced across the grain
- 6 ½ tsp. tamari
- 2 tsp. minced garlic
- 3 tsp. toasted sesame oil
- 2 ½ tsp. raw cane sugar
- 9 tsp. organic canola oil
- ½ yellow onion, thinly sliced
- 1 carrot, peeled and julienned
- Kosher salt
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips (optional if nightshade-sensitive)
- 2 small crookneck squash or zucchini, cut into ¼-in. (6-mm) matchsticks
- 8 oz. (230 g) baby spinach
- 8 (230 g) mung bean sprouts
- 1 tbsp. sesame seeds
- 8 oz. (230 g) shitake mushrooms, stemmed and thinly sliced
- 4 cups (800 g) steamed short-grain brown rice
- 4 fried eggs
- Kimchi and gochujang for serving
In a medium bowl, combine the steak with 4-½ tsp of tamari, 1 tsp of the garlic, 1 tsp of the sesame oil, and 2 tsp of the sugar. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.
In a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, warm 2 tsp of the canola oil. Add the onion and carrot, season with salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender-crisp, 4 to 6 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl.
Repeat the process to cook each vegetable separately until just tender, seasoning each with a pinch of salt and adding it to the onion and carrot when done. Cook the bell pepper in 1 tsp canola oil; the squash in 1 tsp canola oil; the spinach in 1 tsp canola oil, adding the remaining 1 tsp garlic during the last minute of cooking; and the bean sprouts and sesame seeds in 1 tsp canola oil and the remaining 1 tsp sesame oil.
Add 2 tsp canola oil to the skillet. Add the mushrooms and cook until browned, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tsp tamari and remaining ½ tsp sugar and cook until glazed, about 1 minute. Transfer to the bowl of vegetables.
Add the remaining 2 tsp canola oil to the skillet, turn the heat to high, add the steak, and cook until browned on both sides, 3 to 4 minutes.
Divide the rice among four bowls. Top evenly with the meat and vegetables, followed by a fried egg. Serve with kimchi and gochujang.
Source: The Anti-Inflammation Cookbook