Toasted rice is usually what happens when I lose track of time and remove my rice from the burner too late. But here, the rice is intentionally toasted, giving it a nutty flavor and crunch that sticks to your teeth. It’s a good sensation, along with the thin strips of beef, wild mushrooms and wilted spinach.
And oh, let’s not forget the fried egg on top. We all know I have a soft spot for any recipe that incorporates this beauty (I have breakfast pizza in mind for the weekend).
This dish is lovely in preparation and presentation. It’s quite a show – quickly frying, then transferring to bowls warming in the oven, then back to fry something new. All the while you’re building layers in your rice bowl. Layers that the egg yolk will soon soak in to. And you’ll top it all off with a crunchy little pickled salad that adds an acidity and freshness you need to balance the other flavors. Genius!
I adapted mine from the Cook’s Illustrated “Cooking For Two” magazine.
Korean-Style Beef with Toasted Rice and Fried Egg (adapted from Cook’s Illustrated)
Ingredients (serves 2)
- 1/2 c. mung bean sprouts
- 1 carrot, peeled and then peeled into ribbons or grated
- 1/2 cucumber, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/4-inch slices
- 1/2 c. seasoned rice vinegar
Combine the above ingredients, pressing veggies down so submerged in vinegar. Cover and refrigerate for 30 min. Drain vinegar before serving.
For beef bowls:
- 1 c. rice (I used long-grain), rinsed
- 1 c. water
- 4 oz. flank steak, or any other steak good for a stir-fry, sliced against the grain into 1/8 inch strips
- 1 T soy sauce
- 4 tsp vegetable oil
- 4 oz. shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 5 oz. (one box) baby spinach
- Kosher salt and pepper
- 2 large eggs
- 1.5 tsp toasted sesame oil
Place two oven-safe serving bowls on baking sheet in oven and heat to 200 degrees.
Bring rice and water to boil in a large nonstick skillet over high heat. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer until rice is tender, 15-18 min. Uncover lid and crank heat to medium-high and cook until rice is golden brown in spots and emits a toasty smell, about 7-9 min. Divide rice between two warming bowls and return bowls to oven.
Wipe out pan and heat 2 tsp oil until just smoking. Meanwhile, toss beef with soy sauce, then add to hot skillet. Add mushrooms immediately and cook until beef is cooked through, 3 min. Divide into bowls; return bowls to oven
Add 1 tsp oil to skillet over medium heat and add garlic, cooking until fragrant, 30 seconds. Stir in spinach until wilted, about 1 min. Season with S&P to taste, then divide into the bowls.
Wipe out skillet again and add last 1 tsp oil. Return to medium-high heat until hot, then crack in two eggs on opposite sides of the pan. Sprinkle with S&P. Cover and cook until the whites are set, 2 min.
Remove bowls from oven and slide one egg on top of each. Drizzle each with sesame oil and top with pickled vegetables.
When you pierce the yolk, it runs down through all the layers of goodness and is just lovely.
While I spent time reading a book, drinking wine and making this, Grant slaved away outside making the giant trellis pictured below, which will soon be covered with hummingbird vines, wisteria, jasmine and honeysuckle. Handyman. And gardenman.
Enjoy, friends! xoxo