Bi bim bap

When my IBM crashed about two months ago, I knew that I wanted a Mac. All the cool people at my school have one, and I actually have better Mac than PC skills since we used them at the newspaper. Anyway, since purchasing my beautifully sleek black MacBook, I've found that the post-it note widget is my favorite feature. This may be surprising, given features like spaces and spotlight, but it's true. My pink post-it note lists ideas for recipes that I want to try, and bi bim bop has been on the list for a while. We finally decided to attempt it for two friends, and I wouldn't be surprised if this is something we pull out again and again.

I don't know how many times I will write this before people yell at me to shut up about it, but dishes with components really are the greatest. For our bi bim bap, we added cucumbers, carrots, radicchio, sprouts, spinach, mushrooms and chicken. That's in addition to the delicious bi bim bap sauce. We're not experts in bi bim bap, so I don't feel comfortable speaking to the authenticity, but I can definitely say that this tasted delicious.

Another thing: If anyone watched Arrested Development when it was on, doesn't the name bi bim bap kind of remind you of the name Bob Loblaw? I love to say it: bimbimbap.

Ingredients (serves 4-6)
2 cups jasmine rice
3 carrots, julienned
2 cucumbers, thinly sliced
1 bag spinach
1 head radicchio
2 cups bean sprouts (we had to use alfalfa, since the store didn't have bean sprouts)
2 cups shitake mushroms
4 eggs
about 3 tbsp sesame oil

4 chicken cutlets, cut into very thin slices
1 cup soy sauce
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp sesame seeds, toasted
1/4 cup chopped scallion

3 tbsp red curry paste or kochujang curry bean paste
2 tbsp water
3 tbsp sugar
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp sesame seeds, toasted

Make the marinade for the chicken by combining soy sauce, sugar, sesame seeds and scallions. Add chicken and marinate in refrigerator for at least two hours. Boil 3 1/2 cups of water. Add rice and cook covered until water is absorbed, about 20 minutes. In a large pan, saute spinach in about 1 tbsp sesame oil, then set aside. Add additional tbsp oil, and cook carrots until they begin to soften. Add shitake mushrooms and cook until soft. Remove vegetables and set aside. Heat a tiny bit more oil, then add the chicken and cook through, about 10 minutes. Make sauce by combining ingredients in a small saucepan and stirring until it reaches a boil. Just before serving, fry the eggs sunny-side up, and you can leave the egg a bit runny if you like. Serve all ingredients over rice, and drizzle with sauce.