Verdict: Win!

Bi bim bap is basically a deconstructed fried rice. The first time I ordered bi bim bap, I didn't know how to enjoy this dish. I made some of the greatest faux pas - I didn't mix in the bi bim bap sauce (gochuchang/gochujang/etc sauce, an amazing sweet and spicy sauce) nor enjoy the runny egg yolk from the over easy egg that tops this delicious dish. My favorite way to eat this dish is as "dolsot bi bim bap," which is just bi bim bap served in a hot stone pot. It doesn't sound special, but in a hot stone pot the rice on the bottom crisps up and is absolutely divine. I've ordered bi bim bap twice this past month (first @Kibu Cafe and second @Maru Sushi, which was the best...and now they also deliver!)

Alton Brown's recipe for bi bim bap satisfied my craving for this dish. I made some considerable changes, though. For the bulgogi I substituted 2 kiwis for the Asian pear, used ancho chile powder for the red pepper powder, used closer to 10 oz of 7-Up, and marinated the meat for about 20 hours since I used a cheaper cut of beef (angus chuck roast). For the actual construction of the bi bim bap, I didn't dizzle/sprinkle any soy sauce, sesame oil, or sesame seeds on the rice. Next time, I'll make sure to blanch the bean sprouts and add spinach and shiitake mushrooms. The julienned carrots were great raw, and do NOT omit the over-easy egg. For the gochuchang sauce, I only omitted the sesame seeds.



Bi Bim Bap adapted from the Food Network
Yield: Serves 4

INGREDIENTS
For bulgogi:
1 pound angus chuck roast
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 kiwis, diced with juices
2 tablespoons finely chopped garlic
1/2 small white onion, grated or sliced
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons sesame seeds, toasted
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon korean chili powder
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 green onions, thinly sliced
10 oz Sprite or 7-Up

For gochujang paste:
4 tablespoons gochujang
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons sesame oil

For bibimbap:
Steamed white rice
Bulgogi, recipe above
1 carrot, julienned
Cooked (boiled) bean sprouts, sauteed in a little sesame oil or peanut oil and seasoned with salt
Cooked spinach, sauteed in a little sesame or peanut oil and seasoned with salt
4 shiitake mushrooms, thinly sliced and sauteed in peanut oil and seasoned with salt
1 egg, cooked over easy
Gochuchang paste, recipe above

DIRECTIONS
Partially freeze beef then slice thinly. Set aside.

Whisk together the rest of the bulgogi ingredients for a marinade in a large baking dish. Add the beef and turn to coat. Cover and refrigerate overnight (max 24 hours).

Heat grill to high. Remove beef from marinade and grill for 1-2 minutes per side. Remove from heat and set aside.

To assemble gochujang paste, combine all ingredients in a small bowl and mix well. Set aside.

To assemble bibimbap, put rice in a large, slightly shallow bowl. Sautee vegetables with a little soy sauce and season with salt. Place bulgogi and vegetables on top of rice, but place separately so you can see each ingredient. Place egg on top. Sprinkle with sesame seeds as desired.

When ready to eat, mix all ingredients together with some gochujang paste (to taste).

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