Beef bulgogi with kimchi rice cakes are easier than you think
Do me a favor and take a peek into your pantry. How many types of rice do you have hiding in there? One or two?
Perhaps Arborio for the time you tried out risotto and forgot about it? I think we can all agree that rice is a pantry staple and a side that we consume on a weekly, sometimes daily basis. Cooking up a pot is easy, it goes with pretty much anything but unless you’re turning it into pilaf, paella or pudding — rice can get boring after a while.
The thing is, it doesn’t have to be! There are probably hundreds of ways to use rice, some more challenging than others but it’s definitely time to think outside the box. We are going to start with baby steps today and, at the moment, that is going to be the best way to use leftover rice. Fried rice might be the first use you think of but what I love is crispy rice cakes, ready to be piled up with a number of toppings.
I love cooking Asian food at home; and so, unless I’m heading over to Brooklyn Chinatown, the best version of it is going to come out of my own kitchen. At home, I can play around with different flavors and dishes for a more modern take. Cooking Asian cuisine at home might seem scary at first but once you have a stocked pantry of sauces and vinegars you are good to go. I had been playing around with a bulgogi marinade recipe and thought it would be the perfect topping for crispy rice cakes mixed with some spicy kimchi. The tender beef and the crispy rice are wonderful textural contrasts, along with pickled vegetables and cooling avocado. Dare I say it, but this really is a party happening on your plate.
At first, this recipe is going to seem a little scary, there are a lot of parts and ingredients but I promise it’s not as scary as it looks. Most of what’s going on involves marinating or quick pickling and the rest is a breeze. In fact, you can get half of it going the night before and still make this a simple weeknight meal. Visit rethinkrice.riceselect.com to view other fresh recipes and sign up to have them delivered straight to your inbox.
2 tablespoons unsalted butter + avocado or grapeseed oil
1 ripe Hass avocado, sliced
In a plastic bag set in a bowl, combine soy sauce, mirin, sesame oil, grated apple, sliced onion, minced garlic, grated ginger, brown sugar and chopped scallions to form the marinade for the bulgogi. Add the short ribs, seal and massage the bag to mix everything together.
Place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least an hour, or the marinade can be made ahead overnight.
In a medium bowl, combine the rice vinegar, sugar, water and salt and whisk until the sugar and salt dissolves.
Cut the carrot and cucumber into a julienne with a sharp knife or the julienne blade on your mandoline. Add to the liquid and let pickle for about an hour.
While the vegetables are pickling, remove the beef from the refrigerator to come to room temperature and start to prepare the rice cakes.
In a medium bowl, mix together the rice, chopped kimchi and eggs until combined.
Heat a large non-stick skillet over medium to medium-high heat and add 1/2 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of oil. Wet your hands and form 1/3 cup size balls with the rice and add them to the skillet.
Using the back end of a spatula, flatten the cakes down and cook about 4 to 5 minutes per side or until the cakes are golden brown and crispy. Make sure you don’t crowd the pan when you cook the rice cakes.
While the first round of cakes are cooking. Heat your oven to 250 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Transfer the cooked cakes to the baking sheet and keep warm in the heated oven.
Continue to cook the cakes, adding more butter and oil to the pan as needed.
Once all the cakes are cooked, carefully wipe the skillet clean with a paper towel, add about 1 teaspoon of oil and cook the short ribs in the same skillet.
Add the ribs, 2 to 3 at a time, depending on the size, and cook about 30 seconds to 1 minute per side. They will become thin and cook up super fast.
Once they are finished cooking, roughly chop.
To serve, place 2 rice cakes per plate, pile the bulgogi on top, a healthy topping of pickled vegetables and slices of avocado. Sprinkle with scallions and if you like, serve with sriracha sauce on the side.
This post is part of a sponsored collaboration between Rice Select® and SheKnows