When I started working at my biotech job about a year ago, I was introduced to my first taste of Korean food via a dish called Dolsot Bibimbap.
Bibimbap (“bee-beem-bop”) is a combination of rice, sauteed vegetables, and an egg yolk cracked on top (with the intention of mixing it together with the other steaming ingredients) to make a sort of delicious fried rice type dish.
But it gets better.
When you add “dolsot” to the front, it now comes served in a flaming-hot stone/clay pot that causes the rice to become crispy and crackly at the bottom. My favorite version comes with beef. Paired with soy sauce and Sriracha or sweet chili paste, this dish is sure to kick some butt both flavor and uniqueness departments.
While the equipment needed is a little tough to find (dolsot bowls from a Korean market and hot tongs), the dish is worth it and the bowls are inexpensive (about 5$ each here in the bay area).
Recipe 59: Dolsot Bibimbap
Total Time: 45 mins-1 hour
Yields: 2-3 servings based on how “heavy-handed” you are
2 dolsot bowls (available at Korean markets)
1 pair hot tongs (pot-holder okay)
2 cups prepared short-grain white or brown rice
1 lb thin-sliced beef
1 large carrot, sliced into 2-3″ matchsticks
1/2 medium zucchini, sliced into 2-3″ matchsticks
1 loose cup bean sprouts
1/2 bunch spinach, washed and roughly chopped
6-7 fresh mushrooms, washed and sliced
5-6 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp sugar (for the beef)
2 eggs (yolk only)
salt/pepper to taste
Prepare your rice. There are 2 things in the world that without fail, I cannot cook properly: grilled cheese sandwiches and rice. For this reason, I finally broke down and bought a rice cooker.
Place your clean dolsot bowls into a cool oven. Turn the heat to 400F. They need this to slowly ramp up to the temperature safely. Don’t put cold bowls in a hot oven!!!
Prepare your ingredients, sauteing each individually on medium-high heat in garlic, a dash of sesame oil, and a dash of soy sauce until soft. For the beef, mix the sugar into the meat/sauce/garlic mixture before adding to the hot pan and saute until browned. Place on a plate and keep them in their own “piles”. It makes it easier to stack your bibimbap so the colors are separate.
Once your ingredients are cooked, carefully use your hot tongs to pull your now 400F bowls out of the oven and put them into a wooden cutting board or heat-safe surface. Put a generous dash of sesame oil in the bottom of each bowl and then scoop about 3/4-1 cup of prepared rice in. Using a spoon or rice paddle, gently pat the rice down to form with the bowl. You’ll hear crackling as the rice starts to crisp in the heated sesame oil.
Arrange your meat and vegetables in groups along the top of the rice bowl and place the whole thing back into the oven. When you hear the rice start to really get going with the crackling noises, pull the bowls out and crack an egg (yolk only) onto the center of each. Serve quickly with pot-holders or heat-safe platters.
To eat, quickly stir the egg yolk into the hot mixture and add soy sauce, Sriracha, or sweet chili paste.