Bibimbap Starring Oyster Kimchi
For everyone who has been waiting with bated breath for the oyster kimchi recipe, here it is! Enjoy it alone or in bibimbap.
Korean Mixed Rice (Bibimbap)
This homestyle Korean dish literally means to stir (bibim) cooked rice (bap). There are two different ways to serve bibimbap. In restaurants, bibimbap is sometimes served in a dolsot or stone bowl heated over a burner so that a layer of crispy, burnt rice forms at the bottom. Yangja Im makes a simpler version topped with any vegetable panchan (side dishes) she may have on hand and eats it warm or at room temperature. You can use just about any meat or vegetable dish: everything from kimchi, namul (try Yangja’s hobak namul recipe), steamed vegetables, deep fried tofu, or even gyoza and japchae (cellophane noodles). It’s a great way to use up the leftovers and with the numerous combinations you’ll never make it the same way twice.
Time: 5 minutes
Makes: 1 serving
1 1/2 cups cooked Japanese rice
1/4 cup kimchi
1/4 cup oyster kimchi
1/4 cup soybean sprout salad
1 fried egg cooked over easy
1/2 teaspoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon Korean red pepper paste (kochujang), or to taste
Scoop rice into a big, wide bowl.
Arrange vegetables in neat piles on top of rice. Top with a fried egg and spoon sesame oil and red pepper paste over.
Mix well and enjoy!
Spicy Korean Oyster Salad (Kul Kimchi)
A kimchi is being invented as we speak. Yes, they are that prolific and every Korean cook has their own version. Jean Lee’s uses freshly-shucked oysters and romaine lettuce. You can buy oysters from your favorite fishmonger or in quart-sized jars at supermarkets. The romaine lettuce leaves may seem large, even after cutting, but they will wilt and shrink to about 4 to 5 inches. This dish will keep for about 2 to 3 days, depending on freshness of oysters. It should be refrigerated any time it’s not being immediately served.
Time: 20 minutes plus marinating time
Makes: 6 to 8 servings as a side dish
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/4 cup Korean chili pepper flakes
2 tablespoons minced garlic (about 5 to 6 cloves)
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
2 heads romaine lettuce, halved lengthwise (for particularly large leaves, halve crosswise as well)
5 green onions, cut into thin rings
1/2 red pepper, cut into thin rings
3 cups freshly-shucked raw oysters, rinsed in salt water to remove any grit, and drained
In a large non-reactive bowl, combine brown sugar, chili pepper flakes, garlic, fish sauce, rice vinegar and mix well. Sprinkle toasted sesame seeds and mix to form a coarse paste.
Add lettuce, green onions, and red pepper to the chili mixture in the bowl and toss until leaves are well-coated. Add oysters and mix gently. Let kimchi sit for at least 3 hours or preferably overnight.
Just before serving, stir the kimchi. Serve with steamed short-grain (Japanese) rice and a main dish like kalbi or in bibimbap.
If you don’t have a bowl big enough to contain all the ingredients, divide ingredients equally into two of your biggest bowls. As the lettuce shrinks, combine everything in one bowl and mix well to combine.