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Convenience Store Bibimbap

This is a product that came out about a year or so ago. Convenience store food has been leaning towards fresher, healthier, and more filling options. And they’ve been getting more Korean. You may be wondering how a Korean convenience store can get more Korean. Yet I remember reading when this bibmbap and celebrity chef branded dosirak (bento boxes) entered the market. It was a new awareness and respect for Hansik, Korea’s homegrown cuisine. The bibimbaps are not really everywhere yet. When I do see them I’m usually not in the market for them. But since I have the office in Yeouido, and Yeouido continually proves to be a culinary wasteland, this was a perfect opportunity to try this out.

This bibimbap is of the sanchae variety, meaning “mountain vegetables.”

Here are the components. Rice in the big paper bowl. The plastic tray has all the little trimmings, including some sauteed carrots, zucchini, bean sprouds, mushrooms, mountain herbs, and shredded egg. Included are a packet of seasoned gochujang, a little packet of sesame oil, and a spoon to mix and eat with.

According to the instructions, you add everything but the sesame oil to the rice. Then heat it in the microwave for 90 seconds.

Add the sesame oil. To me, bibimbap is empty without the sesame oil.

Then mix, mix, mix thoroughly.

Let me just say that this may be the best and freshest food I’ve ever had in my long around-the-world career of convenience store dining. Even better than Osaka 7-Eleven sushi. The gochujang was much spicier than I was expecting. It was a little sweet and had sesame seeds in it.

The bibimbap sells for W3,000. Not bad for a filling, tasty, and (OMG) healthy lunch.

ZenKimchi

Author: ZenKimchi

Joe McPherson founded ZenKimchi in 2004. He has been featured and sourced in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Los Angeles Times, The Washington Post, CNN, KBS, MBC, SBS, Le Figaro, Travel + Leisure Southeast Asia, Harper’s Bazaar Korea, The Chosun Weekly, and other Korean and international media. He has consulted for "Parts Unknown with Anthony Bourdain," The Travel Channel’s “Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern,” Lonely Planet, National Geographic, Conde Nast Traveler, the PBS documentary series “Kimchi Chronicles,” and other projects in the UK, Canadan, and Australia featuring celebrity chefs such as Gizzi Erskine and Gary Mehigan. Mr. McPherson has written for multiple Korean and international publications, including SEOUL Magazine, JoongAng Daily, The Korea Herald, Newsweek Korea and wrote the feature article for U.S. National publication Plate magazine’s all-Korean food issue. He has acted as dining editor for 10 Magazine and was on the judging panel for Korea for the Miele Guide. He spoke at TEDx Seoul on Korean food globalization, at TED Worldwide Talent Search on the rise of Korean cuisine, and in New York City on Korean Buddhist temple cuisine. The company ZenKimchi International organizes food tours for tourists and corporations and acts as a media liaison for foreign and Korean media and local restaurants and producers.

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  • http://www.monster-island.net/ kushibo

    That looks a lot more appealing than I thought it would when I first clicked on the link. 

  • Laura Lupton

    Looks AMAZING! I wish we had something like that here in England because I would eat it every day!

  • Laura Lupton

    Looks AMAZING! I wish we had something like that here in England because I would eat it every day!

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