6-7 Sheets dried laver seaweed
A 9 or 10 oz bag of ready to use spinach
1 log of yellow pickled radish, or “danmuji”
1 large carrot, or 2 medium sized carrots, peeled
Kosher salt, divided
Sesame oil, divided
Olive oil, divided
Roasted sesame seeds, divided
1 lb ground beef
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
3 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp sugar
2 tsp sesame oil
6 cups cooked (3 cups uncooked) short grain or sushi rice
½ Tbsp Sesame Oil
½ Tbsp Olive Oil
½ Tbsp Sesame Seeds
¼-½ tsp kosher salt, or to taste
For the beef:
In a bowl, combine all the ingredients for the beef. Mix everything together by hand and set it aside to marinate while you prepare the other ingredients. When all the other ingredients are prepped, and the beef has had time to marinate, heat a large pan with some olive oil and fry the beef until it is nicely browned. Remove the beef with a slotted spoon into a bowl and set aside.
For the spinach:
Add the entire 9 or 10 oz bag of ready to use spinach in salted boiling water. Boil for 30 seconds, and drain. Run cold water over it to stop the cooking, and squeeze out all the excess moisture with your hand. Transfer to a bowl and season with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, and a couple pinches of kosher salt. Mix well. Set aside.
For the “danmuji,” or pickled radish:
Slice the log of radish into ½” thick slices. Cut each slice into strips, so that you end up with thin long strips, about ½” thick in diameter. Set aside.
For the carrots:
Peel and slice your carrot(s) thinly on a diagonal. Lay the slices flat and run your knife through them lengthwise to create thin julienned slices. Saute them in a pan with some olive oil and season with a couple pinches of salt to taste. Set aside.
For the eggs:
Break 5 eggs and add a couple pinches of salt. Whisk well. Heat a large pan with olive oil over medium low heat. Use a paper towel to wipe the pan so that it is evenly coated. Pour in the eggs and let it cook until the bottom is firm and light golden brown. Flip the egg over and cook until light golden brown. Remove to a plate and cut the egg into half-inch strips. Set aside.
For the rice:
Mix the rice last. After all the ingredients are prepped and the beef is cooked, place the 6 cups of cooked rice into a large bowl, along with the other ingredients for the rice. Mix gently, and get everything ready for assembly.
Assembly and slicing:
Place a sheet of dried laver seaweed, shiny side down, on a bamboo mat. Starting from the bottom, spread some rice in a thin even layer, filling about ⅔ of the seaweed sheet.
All of the filling that goes on top of the rice should start at 1” from the bottom, and have 2” of rice above it. Place the danmuji and egg first, leaving a gap in between them. In that gap, add your beef in a neat row. On top of the beef, place the carrot and spinach side by side, also in neat rows.
Starting from the bottom, roll the seaweed sheet, using the mat. The first roll should land right where that excess rice is. That will help it stick together. Gently push and squeeze down on the bamboo mat. Move the mat a litttle further away from you, allowing the kimbap to roll with it. Again, squish down and press with your hands. Then wrap and roll the entire kimbap up in the mat. Squeeze firmly across the entire length of the mat to make the sure the kimbap is tight. If you’re having trouble keeping the seaweed shut, add a few grains of the rice at the edge of the seaweed sheet.
Use a brush or a gloved hand to put some sesame oil on the surface of the kimbap rolls. This adds flavor and helps keep the kimbap shiny. It also helps to add a little sesame oil to your knife blade. With a sharp knife, slice the kimbap into thin half inch or bite sized pieces. Kimbap is characteristically sliced thinner than Japanese maki. You can then sprinkle with some more roasted sesame seeds if you want. Pop it into your mouth and enjoy your hard work!
TIP: For the summer time, instead of the marinated beef, you can use strips of cooked ham, and instead of spinach, you can either use thin strips of cucumber, or julienned perilla (sesame) leaves to lighten it up and keep it easy!