I may have made a mistake setting up my schedule for March. We’re nearing the end of the month and my activities and deadlines are starting to pile up. Just this week I have 3 massive deadlines, a 5 hour Google hangout and a flight to Berlin. It’s a lot to take in. With such an overwhelming workload that often has me struggling until bedtime to finish, it’s hard to find time to cook a proper meal. So I decided to just prep enough food to last me at least half a week.
Food prep takes a lot of effort. It’s not something I generally like doing, as it takes up quite some time. Specially during busy weeks it might sound contradictory to spend two and a half hours on meal preparation. But, boy, I do love the look of a fridge full of containers of nicely prepped vegetables and meals, just waiting to get nuked in the microwave.
Note: starting this Thursday I will have a little less food on the blog, as I will be travelling for the upcoming 3 weeks. I will attempt to write some travel blogs while abroad, but they might not always be up on schedule.
Time: 90 minutes – Serves 4
- 250g tofu rinsed, patted dry, sliced in 0.5cm slices
- 200g shiitake mushrooms sliced
- 1 1/2c grated carrot
- 1 zucchini sliced in half moons
- 400g spinach
- 1c beansprouts
- 3tbsp tamari (sweet) soy sauce
- 3tsp brown sugar
- 1tbsp+1tsp mirin
- toasted sesame oil
- vegetable oil
- sesame seeds
- 4c short grain rice
For the sauce
- 4tbsp gochujang (look for it in asian supermarkets)
- 2tsp toasted sesame oil
- 2tsp tamari soy sauce
- 3tsp rice vinegar
- Prepare the rice according to package instructions. I rinse my rice and then make it in a rice cooker.
- Heat a large pan on medium high with a generous amount of vegetable oil. Place the tofu slices in an even layer on the pan. Cook for about 7-8 minutes on each side, until golden brown and crispy. Set aside
- Heat a pan over medium low heat and add the shiitakes, tamari, brown sugar and mirin. Let cook until shiitakes are soft and the marinade absorbed. Set aside
- Heat a pan over medium high heat and add the zucchini. Let cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Season with 1/2tsp sesame oil and 1/4tsp salt. Set aside.
- Heat a pan over medium high heat and add the carrots. Cook for about 1-2 minutes. Season with 1/2tsp sesame oil and 1/4tsp salt. Set aside
- Heat a pan over medium high heat and add spinach. Cook until wilted about 3 minutes. Season with 1/2tsp sesame oil and 1/4tsp salt. Drain slightly and set aside.
- Heat a pan over medium high heat and add the beansprouts. Cook for about 3 minutes. Season with 1/4tsp sesame oil and 1/8tsp salt. Set aside.
- Make the sauce by combining the ingredients in a bowl and whisking together.
- To plate, grab a bowl, add about a cup of rice and a heaping tablespoon of all the vegetables and a couple slices of tofu (keep everything separate!). Add a teaspoon to a tablespoon of the sauce depending on how spicy you prefer your bibimbap. Top with sesame seeds.
- Make sure to mix everything together. It’s okay if it gets messy. That’s the beauty of this dish.
Note: I store all my prepped vegetables in separate containers. When it’s time to reheat I only reheat the rice and let the heat from that warm up the vegetables.