Today’s cooking adventure: kimbap!
You may say, Lia, those are just sushi and you’d be so wrong! Here are the fundamental differences:

The rice is seasoned with salt and sesame oil, no rice vinegar here!

The basic filling usually includes seasoned spinach, damuji (pickled sweet yellow radish) and fried carrots, however you’ll often also see omlette, spam or kimbap meat (a delicious, slightly sweet sausage) or cucumber.  Once you roll it, you then oil the outside with sesame oil and sprinkle some sesame seeds on it. No raw fish!
The taste is very different from sushi and because kimbap is seasoned throughout, you don’t eat these with any condiments. Sometimes for the mini mayak kimbap, you may be given a honey mustard style sauce for dipping.

Here’s the recipe:

– sticky rice
– sesame oil – spinach, wilted
– carrots julienned – garlic chopped
– damuji (the yellow pickled radish)
– 2 eggs
– cucumber sliced into sticks
– Spam sticks fried (optional)
– Roasted seaweed (nori)

Fry omlette and fold over several times, slice length wise, set aside.
Fry carrots in a bit of oil, salt and chopped garlic, add a bit of sesame oil, set aside.
Fry the spam sticks if using, rest on paper towel, set aside.
Wilt spinach in boiling water for 2mins, drain, and wash with cold water. Squeeze water out carefully, add salt & pepper, sesame oil and chopped garlic, set aside.
Slice cucumber and radish into sticks.

Cook rice and transfer into a big mixing bowl. Carefully mix enough sesame oil to make the rice less sticky, and season with plenty of salt. Taste the rice, it should be yummy.

Wet your hands to handle rice and spread onto nori. Place ingredients in the middle and roll tightly.
Oil the finished roll with sesame oil. Slice and sprinkle with sesame seeds!

About the Author

Lia Kelly

Hey, I'm Lia. I'm a Cardiff-based home cook sharing authentic Korean recipes with anyone who is curious about Korean culture and flavours. Hope you enjoy Korean Kitchen Cardiff!

View All Articles