This weekend, I had the opportunity to see a Master Chef performing in his element. Martin Yan has hosted several successful cooking shows, one of which was recently rated the 4th best cooking show of all time. He has written 30 cookbooks and taught at several Culinary Academies. Most importantly to me, however—he is a Davis Alumnus and a fellow Aggie! He came to Davis this last Friday and gave a cooking demonstration in our Dining Commons. I was in awe while watching him cook his Chinese cuisine! The ease with which he chops and dices and minces is just Godly. He must be close friends with Hestia. I went with my friend, Irvin who also has a passion for cooking and upon leaving, we decided we needed to get together the next day to have a cooking party along with my roommate, Caitlin (although we had to immediately quell our need for good food by having a delicious dinner of Indian food at Kathmandu Kitchen). The next morning, I woke up wanting to try to cook something new—Korean food! I figured a safe place to start would be bibimbap…I mean I’ve always heard it be described as an easy dish, made up of leftovers. I figured it would be a safe starting point. Traditionally, Bibimbap is served as rice, topped with sautéed vegetables, an egg, kimchi (spicy, pickled cabbage), and sliced meat. As long as you have those essentials, you can really just experiment and it will most likely come out beautifully.
Our Bibimbap consisted of a mixture of white rice, brown rice and barley, topped with blanched Edamame and Bean Sprouts, sautéed Spinach, sautéed Chinese Cabbage, Scrambled Eggs, and Tofu, sautéed with Kimchi. The vegetables were cooked with soy sauce, ginger and garlic. The dish was topped with Huy Fong Sriracha (Chinese Hot Sauce), sesame seeds and additional Kimchi, if desired (I say, go for it! That stuff is amazing). If you're not used to Korean food, this may be a little out of the ordinary for you, but as long as you can deal with some spice, you'll love it. Plus, you can add other vegetables you like and take out ones you don't like or change the protein from tofu to chicken or pork. It would also be good with a basted, fried or sunny side up egg. Just take a stab at it and see what comes out!