Bibimbap: comfort food

Why this is my go-to comfort lunch on days when I have the “I can’ts” and “I don’t wannas” and “why does everything have to be so darned difficults”, I can’t say. I’m a midwesterner of Western European extraction. My mother did take Chinese cooking lessons before I was born, and made stir-fry once or twice a week when I was growing up. Maybe that’s where it comes from. (Stir-fry, by the way, is my go-to comfort dinner on “why did I have to out in the cold inconvenience for so long” days).


Here is my homemade version of bibimbap. It is built on a layer of starch, rice if there is any in the fridge, otherwise bird’s nest noodles. That gets flavored with soy sauce and sacha sauce (the lump of brown stuff at the bottom), a meaty-flavored fish sauce that is VERY addictive. In go green onions, two eggs flash-fried in very hot oil so the whites get puffed and lacy, and the whole gets topped with sriracha chili sauce and furikake (a seasoned mixture of seaweed and sesame seeds).

The starch is comforting and stodgy, the eggs are hot and creamy, the green onions are crisp and sharp, the soy and sacha are salty and meaty, and the sriracha makes my eyes water and clears out my sinuses. It will put heart into you.

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