I make kimchi fried rice all the time, but it's always a haphazard affair. Half a dozen vegetables go in along with a mound of chopped kimchi and a couple eggs. I turn the heat to high and stir quickly. That's my style. It's always good, but I wanted to see what it would be like if a put a little bit more care into the production. What if I didn't go crazy and chuck in every ingredient I could find in the fridge? Luckily, I ran across this recipe for kimchi chahan on the blog Adnilem's Journey. It looked incredibly simple, and also a bit odd.
From what I can tell, Chahan is Japanese-style fried rice. The real peculiarity is that the rice and egg are mixed before they ever hit the pan. I was deeply skeptical of this at first. Nothing derails a fried rice for me more than the egg and rice sticking to each other and clumping up. But the high heat and agressive stirring solves that problem, and it allows each grain of rice to have its own coating.
The result is a nuanced and ultimately more intriguing version of the dish. It also requires fewer ingredients and less time to make. Not a bad deal.
- 1 1/2 cups cooked rice, warm
- 2 eggs
- 1 cup kimchi, chopped
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 scallion, chopped (optional)
- soy sauce to taste
Pour the sesame oil into a large skillet set over medium heat. Add the garlic, and cook for about 30 seconds, or until fragrant.
Whisk together the two eggs in a medium sized bowl. Add the rice, and stir until well combined. Turn the heat to medium-high, and dump into the skillet. Stir continuously so the rice doesn't stick together, until the egg has completely set, about 30 seconds to a minute.
Add the chopped kimchi and stir until thoroughly combined. Continue cooking until the kimchi is warm.
Serve with an optional garnish of scallions and a little soy sauce to taste.