January 12, 2012

Comfort Food On the Go - Korean Kimbap

I hate thinking of what to make for dinner and I know 99.9% of moms out there agree.  Often, I want to make something and I'm missing the one key ingredient, so I have to think of something else.  What's great about kimbap (gheem-bhop) is that there are so many different combinations of ingredients you can use to make this.  The other reason why I love kimbap is that it's so portable and easy to feed kids if you're going on a short outing.  My son LOVES this.  He actually says, "I love kimbap."

My recipe is what I grew up on and it's not the healthiest, but it's hearty and it tastes good.  This is my comfort food and actually my mom's recipe. Other popular ingredients you can use are spam, bulgogi, cucumber, spinach, carrots, artificial crab meat, and canned tuna. 

Here are the ingredients you need for my family's kimbap with some minor changes.  Makes 8 rolls:
4 hot dogs, pan fried after cut, or boiled
3 eggs beaten, then fried into a large circle
1 layer of fish cake (pan fried and cut into long slices)
8 slices of daikon (comes pre packaged in long slices, or you can slice them yourself)
1 cup of kimchi (chopped and washed)
6 cups of rice ( I miss brown and white)
8 sheets of kim (seaweed)
sesame oil

eggs, hot dog, and fish cake, cut into long slices

i wash the kimchi and slice it so that my son can eat it without the kimbap being too spicy
First, I need to prepare the rice.  Because I have a pressure cooker, my brown rice comes out sticky.  To make kimbap, you need soft sticky rice and the rice has to be completely cooled.  I season the rice with about 3 tbsp. of sesame oil, and salt and pepper to taste.  I don't season the kim, so the rice needs to not be bland.

I place the kim on a flat surface and using my hands covered with plastic kitchen gloves, I spread about 3/4 cup of rice onto the kim, leaving about 1/2 border of kim without rice on it.  A bamboo rolling mat is helpful to put under the kim, but I don't have time for that, so I just make do and roll the kimbap myself. 

Next, leave about an inch space at the bottom and start piling your ingredients on top of and next to each other.  See the picture below for a better idea.

You could make it look prettier than I did, but whenever I make this, I'm working as fast as I can and presentation is not an issue, even if I know I'm going to blog about it. :P

Start rolling slowly.  I don't have any pictures of rolling, but this blog does a much better job of explaining and providing visuals, so take a look for some technical pointers. I just make sure that after each roll, I gently "massage" the kimbap to make sure it's keeping it's shape and that it's tight and packed. 

Afterwards, you can just eat it as a whole, or I like to slice the roll up, which makes it easier for Jonah to eat.



  1. I love these. I tried making it myself too but didn't turn out as well.


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