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Bibimbap is one of the most popular dishes in Korean cuisine, especially among non-Koreans. Bibimbap is a Korean rice bowl topped with beef, an assortment of vegetables, a fried egg, and Korean red pepper paste (gochujang) and is typically served in either a large metal bowl or a sizzling stone bowl. Bibimbap is traditionally made using leftover side dishes (banchan) so any combination of ingredients can be used. This bibimbap recipe uses bellflower root (platycoden, doraji), shitake mushrooms, royal fern (gobi namul), soybean sprouts, and pickling cucumbers for its vegetable assortment.
Ingredients
  • 2 oz dried bellflower root (platycoden, doraji)
  • 1 oz dried sliced shitake mushrooms
  • 1 lb ground beef
  • ½ lb boiled royal fern (gobi namul)
  • 1 lb soybean sprouts
  • 6 pickling cucumbers
  • 4 sheets plain, unseasoned, raw laver
  • 2 eggs
  • 6 cups cooked rice
  • 4 leaves red leaf lettuce
  • 2 green onions
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • 3 tbsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp ground sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp grated ginger
  • 5 tbsp sesame seed oil
  • 4 tbsp soy sauce
  • 7 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 tbsp granulated white sugar
  • 1 tbsp Korean red pepper paste (gochujang)
Instructions
Dried Vegetable Preparation
  1. Place 2 oz of dried bellflower root into a large bowl and soak in cold water for 1 hour until soft.
  2. Place 1 oz of dried sliced shitake mushrooms into a small bowl and soak in cold water for 20 minutes until soft.
Ground Beef Marination Instructions
  1. Pat 1 lb ground beef dry with paper towels and add to a large mixing bowl. Add 2 chopped green onions, 4 cloves minced garlic, 1 tsp salt, 1 tsp ground black pepper, 1 tsp ground sesame seeds, 1 tsp grated ginger and mix thoroughly by hand. Bulgogi can be used instead of using ground beef as well. See this bulgogi, korean bbq beef recipe to learn how to make this dish.
Cucumber Preparation Instructions
  1. Rub salt on the outside of the cucumbers to clean them and remove any dirt and bumps. Slice cucumbers lengthwise and then into thin strips. Place sliced cucumbers in a bowl and add 1 tbsp salt. Mix thoroughly by hand and set aside for 15 minutes until soft. If cucumbers are not your favorite vegetable, any green vegetable can be used instead such as blanched spinach or sauteed squash.
Soybean Sprouts Cooking Instructions
  1. Wash and rinse 1 lb soybean sprouts. Add soybean sprouts to a large pot and add 1 tsp salt. Cook covered for 5-10 minutes until soft. Remove from heat and add 2 tbsp sesame seed oil. Mix thoroughly by hand and set aside. Seasoned mung bean spouts can be used to replace the soybean sprouts as well. See this sukju namul recipe to learn how to make this Korean banchan.
Royal Fern (Gobi Namul) Preparation Instructions
  1. Add ½ lb boiled royal fern (gobi namul) to a large mixing bowl and rinse under cold water. Using scissors, cut the fern into 2-inch strips. Rinse, strain, and place the cut fern strips into a small pot. Add 2 tbsp soy sauce, 2 tbsp olive oil, 2 cloves minced garlic, and 1 tsp ground sesame seeds. Mix thoroughly by hand and place on stove. Add 2 tbsp water and cook on high heat for 2-3 minutes until soft. Instead of using royal fern, seasoned fernbraken can be used instead. See this gosari namul recipe to learn how to cook this delicious side dish.
Cucumber Cooking Instructions
  1. After the cucumbers have softened, squeeze any excess water from them by hand. Place cucumbers into a frying pan and add 3 tbsp olive oil. Heat on high for 5 minutes until done.
Ground Beef Cooking Instructions
  1. Heat a frying pan on high heat. Add the marinated ground beef to the frying pan. Break the ground beef down while it is cooking until it all pieces are cooked throughout.
Shitake Mushroom Cooking Instructions
  1. Strain the soaked shitake mushrooms, squeeze any excess water from them, and add them to a mixing bowl. Add 2 tbsp soy sauce, 2 tbsp granulated white sugar, and mix thoroughly by hand. Add the marinated shitake mushrooms to a frying pan and heat on high for 2-3 minutes until done.
Bellflower Root Cooking Instructions
  1. After the bellflower root has softened, drain the water and add 1 tbsp salt. Mix thoroughly by hand and set aside for 10-15 minutes. Rinse the salted bellflower root under cold water and strain. Cut the bellflower root into 2-inch strips, removing any hard or stiff parts of the root. Squeeze any excess water from the bellflower roots and place in a large pot. Add 2 tbsp olive oil, 1 tsp salt, 2 cloves minced garlic, and 3 tbsp water. Heat covered on high for 10-15 minutes until soft. When done, add 1 tbsp sesame seed oil and mix by hand.
Laver Toasting Instructions
  1. Turn stove on medium heat. Gently swipe raw sheet of laver across the hot stove until is become slightly toasted. Flip and toast each side of the laver. In a small bowl, gently break apart the toasted laver into small pieces.
Egg Cooking Instructions
  1. Cook eggs on low to medium heat sunny-side up until the bottom is golden brown and the top is cooked.
Bibimbap Preparation Instructions
  1. Wash red leaf lettuce leaves under cold water and place nicely in a large metal bowl. Place 2 scoops of cooked rice next to the lettuce leaf.
  2. Place small amounts of each ingredient over the rice. Gently place the cooked egg directly in the center of the bowl. Add a small handful of toasted laver pieces and 1 tbsp red pepper paste (gochujang) in the bowl and serve.
Bibimbap Mixing Instructions
  1. Add 2 tbsp sesame seed oil and mix thoroughly with chopsticks and spoon until the sauce and ingredients are evenly mixed.