Can I just quit my "job", move to Korea, and learn how to rap in Korean? No? Okay fiiiiine. Ugh. I'm obsessed with this stuff you guys. Korean music is spoiling me for American Top 20 nonsense. I've got this new song on repeat and my boys learn the lyrics faster than I do. In fact, they created a game where I pick them up from school, they roll down the windows, we crank a Korean song up nice and loud and they see how many "weird looks" we get. Although I suspect a good half of those looks are due to Joe's rap faces. He's pretty hardcore. I'm pretty sure the other parents think we're obnoxious... little do they know that our Korean rap/pop is squeaky clean! Pardon my nerd-ness, I'm done for today. :)
Well, not completely, since I'm also a food nerd, and watching all of these Korean dramas (cuz somehow you just can't have the music without the dramas!) made me run to the internet searching for recipes for all the amazing looking things they're eating. I've loved kimchi ever since I was 14, when one of my best friends used to bring her Mom's homemade kimchi to school for lunch. Yum!! Anyway, in the midst of my TV-fueled Korean cravings, I discovered a new favorite food blog called Beyond Kimchee. I found this crazy dish there, and it's my new favorite thing to eat for lunch. It may sound a bit odd, especially among my pies and muffins and things, but it's deeeelicious!All you have to do is find yourself some decent kimchi, (or make some!!) and you should have the rest hanging around your house! Oh, and if you need some music to listen to while enjoying your kimchi fried rice, let me know and I'll be happy to recommend a few songs. ;)Kimchi Bacon Fried Rice (adapted slightly from Beyond Kimchee)
4-6 bacon strips
2 cups cooked rice
1 tsp sesame oil
dash black pepper
pinch of salt
fried/sunny-side up egg
Dice the bacon strips into small pieces and start browning them in a frying pan/skillet on medium heat. While your bacon is cooking, chop your kimchi coarsely. My kimchi is pre-chopped into big chunks, if yours is still in head-of-cabbage form, make sure you discard the extra stuffing.
When your bacon is crisp, remove it from the pan and set aside. Remove about half of bacon fat from the pan. Add the chopped kimchi to the pan and saute it for a few minutes until nice and tender. I like mine to still have a little bit of crunch.
Add your cooked rice to the pan and drizzle the sesame oil over it. Stir into the kimchi until it's well mixed and your rice has soaked up all that awesome kimchi flavor. Add a tablespoon or two of kimchi juice if you want more spice or your rice needs more moisture. Add a pinch of salt and a sprinkle of pepper and continue to stir until heated through.
Turn off the heat and stir in bacon. Top with fried egg, sesame seeds, and scallions. Serve immediately.
First of all, the comment I hear most when I talk about kimchi is: "Isn't that stuff really stinky?" Maybe I'm spoiled because my first experience was with 100% homemade kimchi, but I really don't think it's that stinky. To me it smells strongly spicy with some sour pickle-ish smell to it. But rotten-stinky? Nah.
So you have spicy, tangy kimchi mixed with your rice, with that nutty, toasted sesame oil, salty-crisp bacon, and a rich yummy egg on top. Honestly, I only added the scallions for pictures, ha!
Breaking that egg into the rice and mixing it all around in my FAVORITE part! It's kind of hard to describe the flavor of kimchi if you've never had it, but I think it's the most deeply flavorful spicy ingredient out there. Be adventurous! Give it a try and let me know what you think!