It seems like the world is obsessed with Korea and that the K-Craze is here to stay for a while. From K-Pop, Korean dramas to Korean beauty, people seem to be rather hooked to this particular Asian nation and what it has on offer culturally. That said, one of our first trysts with Korean culture was of course through its food. For the longest time, we chomped on Ramyun and Korean fried chicken with equal fervour, however, the cuisine is so wide, it would be unfair to not give the other delicacies their due attention, or worse, call them mere ‘versions’ of something. 

Kimbap is actually a romanised pronunciation of Gimbap. The Korean dish comprises cooked rice, veggies, fish and meat that are rolled in gim, dried sheets of seaweed. This log is then cut up in bite-sized slices using a paring knife. In appearance, Kimbap looks a lot like a ‘slimmer sushi’. And as per some legends, it may have been inspired by the Japanese norimaki, introduced in Korea during the colonial times. Between 1910 and 1945, Korea was ruled as a part of the Empire of Japan, during this era, the Korean kitchens experimented with several Japanese delicacies.  There are many who also argue that Gimbao could well be a modern version of bokssam from the Joseon era, the popular Korean dynasty of medieval times that lasted for more than five centuries. 

Gimbao has now become a signature delicacy of Korea that is enjoyed by all, and has become a snack that can practically be enjoyed everywhere from parties to picnics, potlucks and school. It is typically served along with danmuji (yellow pickled radish) and kimchi. 

During their ongoing Korean food festival, at Honk, Pullman Aerocity we were rather impressed by the Kimbaps on display. The festival would conclude on 8th of May and the menu boasts of the best of Korea’s culinary marvels like Lamb Bulgogi, Japchae etc. We fetched the recipe of the Cheese and Kimchi Kimbap.

Ingredients: 

  • Japanese Rice – 400gm  
  • Salt – 20gm  
  • Black Pepper – 20gm  
  • Sesame Oil – 60ml 
  • Sesame Seeds – 15gm  
  • Chinese Cabbage – 320gm  
  • Miso Paste – 80gm  
  • Gochugaru – 60gm  
  • Rice Flour – 10gm  
  • Mozzarella Cheese – 200gm  
  • Nori Sheet – 4no. 
  • Cucumber – 320gm  
  • Light Soya Sauce – 120ml 
  • Sugar – 40gm  

Source: iStock 

Procedure  

For Kimchi:

  1. Wash and cut Chinese cabbage vertically 1/8. Sprinkle salt over the cabbage wedges and let it leave water as much as possible.  
  2. Blend together Gochugaru Powder, Miso Paste & Rice Flour, Keep it aside. 
  3. Wash and pat dry Chinese cabbage and spread above paste between each layer. Put all cabbage wedges in an air tight and leave it at room temp. For 24hours. Then Refrigerate for further use.  

For Kimbap Rice 

  1. Cook Japanese Rice in a rice cooker once done place the rice in a bowl and add the sesame oil and salt. Mix using a rice paddle until the rice is evenly coated Sprinkle with sesame Seeds. Cover with a kitchen towel and set aside.  

For Kimbap Dip 

  1. In a Bowl, Mix together Light Soya, Sugar, Sesame Oil (10ml) and Sesame Seeds (2gm).  

For Kimbap  

  1. Place a bamboo mat on a flat surface and add a sheet of nori seaweed on top, shiny face down. 
  2. Fill a small bowl with water and place it next to the bamboo mat. 
  3. Add a little sesame oil to a small bowl and place it next to the bamboo mat, with a brush. 
  4. Put about 3/4 cup of rice on the seaweed and spread it evenly across, parallel from you, leaving about 1/3 of the seaweed – the side furthest from you- empty.  
  5. Add the fillings to the centre (Mozzarella Cheese & Cucumber Batons) of the rice and start rolling. 
  6. Grab the bottom edges of the mat with your thumbs while holding on to the filling with your other fingers. Roll it into a tight cylinder, tucking the fillings in firmly and slightly lift the edge of the bamboo mat.