Bibimbap is traditional Korean dish which consists of cooked rice and varied toppings, traditionally served in a hot stone pot called a dolsot. This version is made with carrots, red cabbage, mung bean sprouts, cucumbers, pan-fried mushrooms, and spicy tofu. A cast-iron skillet is used in place of a dolsot, making the rice crispy.

Cast-Iron Skillet Bibimbap [Vegan]

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Ingredients

For the Bibimbap:

  • Cooked rice, cold
  • Generous handful mung bean sprouts
  • 1 cup broccoli florets, steamed
  • Scallions, minced
  • Sesame seeds, toasted

For the Cucumber:

  • 1 medium cucumber, cut to half moons
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon sugar

For the Sesame Red Cabbage:

  • Chunk of red cabbage, cut to thin strips
  • Neutral tasting vegetable oil, for frying
  • A couple of drops toasted sesame oil
  • A pinch of salt

For the Carrots:

  • 2-3 carrots, julienned
  • Neutral-tasting vegetable oil, for frying
  • A couple of drops toasted sesame oil

For the Pan-Fried Mushrooms:

  • 1 cup button mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon mirin

For the Tofu and Sauce:

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 5 tablespoon water
  • 2 tablespoon gochujang
  • 1 teaspoon corn starch
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1 tablespoon mirin
  •  8.81 ounces tofu
  • Neutral-tasting vegetable oil, for frying
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
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Preparation

To Make the Cucumber:

  1. Combine vinegar and sugar. Add cucumber slices and let them marinate.

To Make the Sesame Red Cabbage:

  1. Cut cabbage to thin strips. Fry over high heat for 2 minutes. Add salt and sesame oil. Set aside.

To Make the Carrots:

  1. Julienne carrots. Fry over high heat for 2 minutes. Add sesame oil. Set aside.

To Make the Pan-Fried Mushrooms:

  1. Quarter mushrooms. Fry mushrooms on hot and dry pan until they have shrunk. Set heat to medium-low. Add soy sauce and mirin and continue frying until all liquid has evaporated. Set aside.

To Make the Tofu and Sauce:

  1. Make the sauce by mixing first seven ingredients together.
  2. Mince ginger and garlic and cut tofu to cubes. Heat a splash of oil on frying pan and fry tofu cubes couple of minutes each side until they are crispy and golden brown. Set heat to medium-low and add half of the sauce to pan. Stir until all tofu cubes are coated with sauce.
  3. Pour remaining sauce to small pot and set it over heat. Bring sauce to boil and set it aside when it has thickened.

To Assemble:

  1. Prepare cucumber, red cabbage, carrots, tofu and sauce according to instructions. Steam broccoli, mince scallions and toast sesame seeds.
  2. Brush bottom and sides of cast iron skillet with oil. Preheat skillet on the stove. When skillet is hot add cold rice. Press the rice to firm layer with back of the spoon. Cover the skillet with a lid or piece of foil. Fry the rice over middle heat for 7 minutes or until it’s golden brown and crispy.
  3. Arrange prepared vegetables and tofu on top of the rice. Drizzle them with sauce and garnish with sesame seeds and scallions. Mix rice and vegetables just before serving and serve with remaining sauce.
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