Kimchi Fried Rice (Kimchi Bokkeum Bap)

kimchi bokkeumbap
 
I had been using up leftovers this whole weekend, so I decided to make this kimchi fried rice as a nice change from all of the Thanksgiving inspired dishes we had been eating. Kimchi fried rice is a humble dish made basically with old kimchi and leftover rice. Since Korean homes almost always have these two staples, kimchi fried rice is a favorite go-to meal whenever there seems to be nothing to eat at home. It is especially popular among young people who are living on a low budget. It is a quick-fix meal that is inexpensive to prepare. This is probably why my son makes this dish quite frequently.
 
Kimchi bokkeumbap
 

As I mentioned in my previous posts, when you cook with kimchi, it is best to use well fermented kimchi for the rich and robust flavor it develops. No exception here. If you want to get even more flavor, add some meat – preferably fatty meat. Popular meat additions by Koreans include pork, bacon, beef, ham or spam. This time, I used a little bit of bacon just enough to give the dish a slight smoky flavor. Serve the dish with a fried egg on top if desired. If you like kimchi but have not had this dish, I encourage you to try and make it. I guarantee you will want to have it more often.

Kimchi Fried Rice (Kimchi Bokkeum Bap)
Serves 2
a simple fried rice made with kimchi
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Ingredients
  1. 2-1/2 cups cooked short grain rice - see note 1
  2. 3 - 4 strips of bacon, diced - see note 2
  3. 3/4 cup diced kimchi
  4. 1/4 small onion, diced
  5. 1 small carrot, diced
  6. 3 - 4 tablespoons juice from kimchi
  7. 1 tablespoon soy sauce
  8. 1 - 2 tablespoons Korean chili pepper paste (gochujang)
  9. vegetable or canola oil for stir-fring
  10. 1/2 tablespoon sesame oil
  11. salt and pepper to taste
Optional
  1. 1 teaspoon sesame seeds
  2. 1 scallion, chopped
  3. 2 eggs, fried
Instructions
  1. Heat a lightly oiled large skillet over medium heat. Add the bacon pieces. Cook just until the bacon is slightly browned but not crisp. If you don't want all the rendered fat, remove the fat from the pan leaving about a tablespoon.
    Kimchi bokkeumbap
  2. Add the kimchi, onion, carrots, juice from kimchi, soy sauce and gochujang. Stir fry until the kimchi turns soft and deep in color, 5 - 6 minutes. Take the time to do this step so the rich flavors develop.
    Kimchi bokkeumbap
  3. Add the rice along with a tablespoon of oil, if you have removed the bacon fat.
    Kimchi bokkeumbap
  4. Stir constantly until everything is well incorporated and the clumped up rice is broken up, about 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste. Scrape up the flavorful brown bits from the pan while stirring. Mix in the sesame oil and the optional sesame seeds at the end.
    kimchi bokkeumbap
  5. Top with the optional fried egg, and garnish with the optional sesame seeds and chopped scallion and to serve.
Notes
  1. 1. Day old rice is the best. If the rice is hard after being in the fridge, heat it up in the microwave to soften it a little. If you need to make fresh rice for this dish, use a little less water than called for to make the rice slightly drier than usual.)
  2. 2. If using fresh raw meat (about 4 oz), season it with salt and pepper and set aside while preparing other ingredients. You can also add a small amount of garlic and/or ginger to flavor the meat. Coat the skillet with oil before cooking the meat.)
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  1. Believe it or not, I was craving this very dish today even though I've never had kimchi fried rice before. It just sounded so good, especially since kimchi has been on my mind a lot lately. I just had to come over as soon as I saw you post this on Foodbuzz. It didn't disappoint. If anything, the craving is stronger than ever. Thanks Hyosun!
  2. So yes, I'm korean... but I have to admit I don't LOVE kimchi. There are a couple that I like, like oi kimchi or ggak du gi, but the traditional one I have to be in the mood for... Unless it's cooked in some form, then I love it! I do love kimchi fried rice very much :) Yours looks delicious.
  3. I love kimchi and usually have them around the house for the spicy kick that I need. Have made gyoza with it as well. awesome.
  4. Oh, I've never had kimchi fried rice but I love kimchi. I like to make fried rice when we have leftovers too - random veggies and meat, usually char siu. I used to make fried rice quite often as a college student for the same reasons as your son. :) My roommates and I had creative fried rice ingredients. I am adding your kimchi fried rice to my "to cook" list, and I'm definitely going to use bacon. :)
  5. This looks soooo good! Yum!
  6. I have actually made kimchi and bacon fried rice before (I often have kimchi in the fridge) and I LOVE it! My kids tell me kimchi "smells" and won't eat it - what do they know???! I can even have just rice and kimchi for days and not get bored with it!!
  7. This is a new dish to me....sounds delicious!
  8. I adore kimichi...and we are always fans of fried rice. This looks just delicious. I wish I had a bowl to get me through the day before Christmas madness. Thank you for sharing this with me. I hope you have a wonderful and blessed holiday weekend.
  9. I've never had this -- looks delicious! I love kimchi, but my husband won't go near it. I grew up eating it as a kid. I'll have to make this he next time I visit my mom!

    What is gochujang, by the way?
  10. Melissa - You would like this dish if you like kimchi. Gochujang is fermented chili pepper paste. Thanks.
  11. I love bacon in fried rice and especially with kimchi. Sometimes I use bacon (or pancetta) in kimchi jigae just to get that smoky flavor. It may be too much for some people, but I love it.

    And I've never used gochujang or kimchi "juice" in my fried rice. I will have to give it a try next time.

    Also, great photos.
  12. Amy - Gochujang and/or kimchi juice will add lots of flavor to the dish. Thanks for stopping by.
  13. Thanks for posting this recipe. I've been making kimchi fried rice for many years, but never had a concrete recipe. I also add egg to mine and instead of bacon, but husband is used to having SPAM. So far I've tried 3 of your recipes and they were all delicious. Thanks.
  14. Michelle - Thanks for trying out my recipe. I am so happy to hear you liked it. SPAM is pretty popular with kimchi dishes.
  15. Thank you for visiting. When uploading, I just pick "none" for a layout and "small" for image size. Then move them next to each other where I want the pictures to be. Hope this answers your question, but if not please let me know.
  16. oh.. i must try that.
  17. Love for food - Hope you give it a try. Thanks!
  18. Hyosun Ro, I have just popped in to say I have made this kimchi rice and it was extraordinary! ( In fact I have already prepared it several times and loved it every time ;-) )Thank you for this wonderful recipe!
  19. I just bought a jar of kimchee over the weekend, can't wait to try out this recipe.
  20. I've tried your kimchi fried rice (w/o gochujang) and just loved your recipe. I've reviewed most of your recipes and they also sound so delicious. I just love Korean food and I can't get it here where we live. I make my own kimchi as well. I will be trying out some of your other recipes soon if I can get to an Asian market for some of the other ingredients such as gochujang. Some Asian ingredients I can get but not the main ones that I want. Thank you for your recipes.
  21. Hi^^. Thank you for the delicious recipes. I love your recipes^^.
  22. I love this dish so much. I make it all the time (4 times now since I discovered the recipe last month). It's so easy to make and I save money by making a big pan of it and eat it for dinner and lunch the following day.
  23. Hi Hyosun! I made this with cauliflower rice, it was delicious!!
  24. How long does it take for kimchi to get old? I love your recipes!!! They are the best!!!