Thursday, September 29, 2011


I love Asian food. And I'm talking more than just your run-of-the-mill Chinese fried rice (although I have to say that I still get giddy over a superbly made dish of pork fried rice - like Tony's at Eastern Palace). Having been introduced to some Korean dishes, I must say I am smitten! Bibimbap is one of them. But could I possibly make it at home and do it justice? I decided to find out.

Usually bibimbap is served in a screaming hot stone pot. Okay, that was the first concession my homemade version made. I didn't happen to have the stone pots on hand, and knowing me if I had I would probably be sitting in the emergency room waiting to be treated for burns rather than writing this post right now!

I had saved a recipe for Bibimbap from and I began with that. For the most part I followed it pretty closely. There were just a few modifications I made. The most significant one was that I used boneless skinless chicken breast as the meat instead of beef. The reason for that was pretty straightforward ... that is what I had thawed.

The most important issue with this recipe is to have all of the components prepared so that when it comes to assembly, you are good to go!

The result, you ask? Oh, you didn't ask that? Well, I'm gonna tell you anyway. It was totally awesome! I mean, it rocked!!! Bob and I both were "yummying" all through dinner. While I know it was not totally authentic, it sure was close enough for us!

Will I make it again? You bet! And I'll try it with beef and pork, too. (No, not at the same time ... now you're just being silly.)  It is rather labor intensive timewise but it is so worth it! In fact, I can't wait to make it again. Oh! Don't skip the seasoned spinach. It is scrumptious!

When eating bibimbap there are two schools of thought:
While Bob subscribes to the "eat-each-part-at-a-time" theory and likes his spicy ...
I am more a "mix-it-all-up" kinda gal. I am not kidding, just looking at these pictures makes me wish I could sit down and start the meal all over again!

I only wish Michelle was here so she could tell me if I really did do it justice :-)

Serves 4


  • 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 ounces eye of round or top round steak, thinly sliced
  • Cooking spray
  • 1 cup (2-inch) julienne-cut carrot
  • 1 cup (2-inch) julienne-cut English cucumber
  • 1/2 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • 1/2 teaspoon rice vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 4 large eggs, divided
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 cups hot cooked short-grain rice
  • 1 cup thinly sliced shiitake mushroom caps
  • 1 cup Seasoned Spinach* 
  • 4 teaspoons sambal oelek or Thai chile paste, to taste 


  • Combine first 4 ingredients in a zip-top plastic bag. Seal and marinate in refrigerator 30 minutes. Heat a small nonstick skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Add beef mixture; stir-fry 3 minutes or until done. Remove from pan. Cover and keep warm.
  • Cook carrot in boiling water 1 minute or until crisp-tender. Drain. Rinse with cold water; drain and set aside.
  • Combine cucumber and next 5 ingredients (cucumber through 1 garlic clove); set aside.
  • Heat skillet coated with cooking spray over medium-high heat. Break 1 egg into hot skillet. Cook egg 1 minute; carefully turn over. Sprinkle with dash of salt. Cook an additional minute or until desired degree of doneness. Remove from pan. Cover and keep warm. Repeat procedure with remaining eggs and salt.
  • Spoon 3/4 cup rice into each of 4 bowls. Arrange 1/4 cup each of beef, carrot, cucumber mixture, mushrooms, and Seasoned Spinach over each serving. Top each serving with 1 egg and 1 teaspoon sambal oelek.
 *Seasoned Spinach 


  • 2 (10-ounce) packages fresh spinach, divided
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped green onions
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seeds, toasted
  • 2 teaspoons low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1/2 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced


  • Steam half of spinach, covered, for 5 minutes or until the spinach wilts; place steamed spinach in a colander. Repeat procedure with remaining spinach. Cool slightly, and squeeze dry.
  • Place spinach in a bowl. Add onions and remaining ingredients; toss mixture well to combine. Serve chilled or at room temperature.
Note: You will need to steam the raw spinach in two batches, since there is so much of it. Combining the cool ingredients with your hands is easiest.