The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Bibimbap @ home

I have a tub of gochujang (a spicy Korean paste) sitting in the fridge, which I'd occasionally use but not often enough. So in a bid to use more of this Korean paste, I decided to try my hand at making bibimbap from scratch. Googling for bibimbap recipes brought up Bobby Flay's recipe on the Food Network website, and after a brief check with a couple of other websites, I decided that Flay's recipe was probably not a bad one to base my recipe on. The ingredient list is long, but I had most of the ingredients already in my kitchen, and the Japanese pears (aka "nashi pears" which sounds funny because "nashi" means "pear" in Japanese) are in season at the moment so most of the effort of this dish was having to individually stirfry the vegetables. You can of course opt not to use bulgogi beef, but a simpler beef recipe such as the one given on this website. In fact, you can do anything with this dish - use leftover vegetables, bbq meat, or don't use meat, whatever you like - it's your bowl, your dish, your food. I used vegetables that would give plenty of colour in the bowl.

Note: This is not exactly Flay's recipe as I've modified quantities and some ingredients (e.g. I substituted rice vinegar for the lemonade in the bulgogi marinade).


Serves four


Bulgogi and marinade
400g beef (I used sirloin steak), thinly sliced
1/4 cup soy sauce
1/2 Asian pear (nashi), grated with juices
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped ginger
1 tablespoon raw sugar
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon chilli powder
black pepper
1.5 tablespoons rice vinegar

Gochujang paste
4 tablespoons gochujang (available at Korean grocers)
1 tablespoon sugar

The rest of the ingredients
Cooked rice
1 carrot, julienned
200g Bean sprouts
Leafies (I used hakusai aka Chinese cabbage), thinly sliced
Brocolli, cut into small pieces
6 shiitake mushrooms
4 eggs, fried sunny-side up
Sesame seeds
Sesame oil


Mix the marinade ingredients and add marinade to the thinly sliced beef and turn to coat. Marinate in the fridge for at least one hour or preferably overnight. Cook beef slices for 1 to 2 minutes per side on high heat in a frypan. Remove from heat and set aside until ready to assemble the bowl.

Gochujang paste
Mix gochujang and sugar well.

Vegetables and eggs
Stirfry the bean sprouts, your choice of leafies, greens and shiitake individually in some sesame oil and season with salt. Set aside until ready to assemble.

Assembling the bowl
Put cooked rice in four fairly large bowls. Place bulgogi (with juices from cooked meat) and vegetables on top of rice separately. Put egg on top. Sprinkle with sesame seeds and drizzle with sesame oil if desired. Prior to eating, mix all ingredients together with some gochujang paste to taste.


  1. This looks scrumptious! Can Leigh and I come and help you eat the other 2 servings? :)

  2. This looks scrumptious! Can Leigh and I come and help you eat the other 2 serves? :)

  3. Haha, sorry it's all gone!! :) Maybe next time we can make and eat bibimbap together!