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Bibimbap

Bibimbap in an enamel bowl with sections of sprouts, noodles, spinach, carrots, meat, cucumber.
This bibimbap recipe with its easy, smoky, slightly sweet sauce is going to upend your notion of healthy eating. Swear.
Jordan Bourke | Rejina Pyo

Prep 40 mins
Cook 20 mins
Total 1 hr
Entrees
Korean
4 servings
669 kcal

Ingredients 

For the gochujang sauce

  • 3 tablespoons store-bought or homemade gochujang chile paste
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon roasted (dark) sesame seed oil
  • 2 garlic cloves crushed
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or maple syrup

For the marinated beef

  • 10 ounces beef sirloin
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 teaspoons roasted (dark) sesame seed oil
  • 3 garlic cloves crushed
  • 3 scallions very finely chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

For the bibimbap

  • 2 cups short-grain white rice
  • 5 ounces carrots cut into very thin ribbons using a vegetable peeler
  • 2/3 pound zucchini quartered lengthwise and thinly sliced
  • 5 ounces cucumber halved lengthwise, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 5 ounces daikon radish peeled and cut into thin strips
  • 5 ounces bean sprouts
  • Roasted (dark) sesame seed oil to season
  • Soy sauce to season
  • Mild vegetable oil for frying
  • 7 ounces shiitake mushrooms stemmed and sliced
  • 10 ounces spinach
  • 4 large eggs
  • Toasted sesame seeds to serve
  • A few leaves of salad greens or watercress to serve (optional)

Directions 

Make the gochujang sauce

  • In a bowl, combine all the sauce ingredients and set aside.

Make the beef marinade

  • Slice the beef very thinly—slightly less than 1/8-inch thick works well. (The beef is easier to slice if you first place it in the freezer for about 30 minutes to partially chill it.)
  • In a bowl, mix together the soy sauce, sesame seed oil, garlic, scallions, and pepper. Add the sliced beef, cover, and set aside for 30 to 60 minutes.

Make the bibimbap components

  • Cook the rice according to the package instructions. Keep warm.
  • Fill a large saucepan with water and bring it to a rolling boil. One by one, blanch the carrots, zucchini, cucumber, and radish for 1 minute and the bean sprouts for 2 1/2 minutes. Use a slotted spoon or sieve to remove them from the water, and drain fully. Season each vegetable with 1/2 teaspoon roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce each, keeping the vegetables separate at all times.
  • Heat 1 tablespoon vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and stir-fry until softened, 4 to 5 minutes. Dump the mushrooms in a bowl and season with 1/2 teaspoon each roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce.
  • Return the skillet to medium-high heat. Add the spinach and sprinkle with 2 teaspoons water. Cook for a few minutes, stirring constantly, until the spinach has wilted. Remove the spinach, squeeze out any excess water, and season with 1/2 teaspoon each roasted sesame seed oil and soy sauce. (In Korea, these vegetables are served at room temperature, so don’t worry about keeping them warm.)
  • Return the skillet to medium-high heat, add the marinated beef and the marinade, and stir-fry until the sauce has reduced and the meat is cooked through, about 3 minutes, give or take depending on how thinly you sliced the beef. Move to a plate.
  • Wipe out the skillet or use a clean pan and fry the eggs to your liking.
  • Divvy the hot rice among 4 individual bowls. Place 1 egg in the center of the rice, then arrange the vegetables and meat around it. Sprinkle over some sesame seeds and salad greens or watercress, and serve with the gochujang sauce. (Advise guests to start with a couple of spoonfuls of the sauce and mix everything together well. Add more gochujang sauce to taste.)