I've got another Sunday Supper idea for you! But I have to confess right at the start that this particular meal may be more of a project than even one Sunday can handle. However, it's completely easy to adapt it to a less time-consuming version, provided you decide not to make your own kimchi.
That's it! All you have to do is buy the jar from the store instead of getting a 2-week head start on your burritos. I'm pretty sure 99.9% of home cooks would be down with that.
I am too, in fact, but I also was dying to try making my own kimchi after my sister did it and reported back that it actually wasn't all that complicated or terrifying. And she was right! The hardest part, I found, was remembering not to leave my kimchi to rot away in my hall closet. It may have had an extra couple of days for that initial ferment, but the kimchi came out delicious and I'm still alive after eating it, so I'll just pretend I meant to leave it there an extra 72 hours.
Aside from obtaining your kimchi by whatever means you prefer, the only other really time consuming part of these burritos is the bulgogi. It takes some time to marinate and that does require some pre-planning, and if you can't find thinly sliced beef, you may also find yourself shaving a partially-frozen ribeye yourself. I did, and it was so worth it, as that particular cut of meat has just the right amount of fat to come play with the sugars and acids in the marinade.
Beyond that, I've suggested a few toppings here, but I feel burrito fillings are very personal, so you do you, whatever that means. Hopefully you land in a place with kimchi, bulgogi, rice, something crunchy, something extra spicy, and something cooling. Wrap it all up in the biggest tortillas you can find and chow down.
Bulgogi & Kimchi Burritos
You absolutely do not need to make your own kimchi for this, but I'm including the recipe here. Just know if you do choose to make it you need to allow a couple weeks for it to ferment before it will be ready to eat.
I've included recipes here for suggested main fillings and additional fillers. This is all obviously a bit of a project but basically everything can be made ahead. I've also put in some links below for some of the harder to find ingredients.
For the kimchi:
- 1/2 cup coarse sea salt
- 1 lb napa cabbage
- 1 tbs sweet rice flour
- 1/2 small onion, chopped
- 1/4 cup roughly chopped, peeled asian pear
- 1 inch ginger, roughly chopped
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/8 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup fish sauce
- 1/2 cup gogucharu (korean red pepper flakes)
- 1/2 bunch scallions, green parts only, thinly sliced
- 1 small carrot, grated
- 1/4 cup peeled and grated daikon
- Brine the cabbage: Cut cabbage lengthwise in half and then in half crosswise into quarters. In a large bowl, combine sea salt with 6 cups water and add the cabbage. Soak in the salt water for 6 hours at least.
- Bring rice flour and 1/2 cup water to a boil, and whisk two minutes to a pudding-like consistency. Remove to a bowl to cool and chill until needed.
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine the onion, asian pear, ginger, garlic, 1/8 cup water, fish sauce and sugar. Pulse to puree, then transfer to a large bowl and mix with the chilled rice flour paste, the gogucharu, scallions, carrot and daikon. Toss this mixture with the cabbage and then pack it all into a large glass jar. Seal and place the jar in a plastic bag (this is in case of leaks as the mixture ferments and bubbles), then place it in a dark, cool space, like a closet, for 1-2 days. After this initial fermentation, transfer to the refrigerator and let sit for at least a week before eating.
For the Bulgogi:
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1 large white onion, diced
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 2 tbs mirin
- 8 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1 tbs sesame oil
- 2 tbs fresh ground black pepper
- 2 lbs boneless ribeye
- 4 scallions, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 tbs sesame seeds
- vegetable oil, for grilling
- Make the marinade: in a food processor or blender, add soy sauce, onion, sugar, mirin, garlic, sesame oil, and black pepper and blend to combine. Transfer to a container and refrigerate, covered, up to 24 hours.
- Thinly slice the ribeye: freeze for 20 minutes, then, using a very sharp knife, slice into thin strips. Add to the marinade with the scallions and sesame seeds and chill up to 24 hours, at least 8 hours.
- When ready to grill, heat a heavy skillet or grill pan over high heat. Blot meat dry and add vegetable oil to the hot pan. Cook meat, flipping frequently, until dark browned and cooked through, about 2-3 minutes.
For the Nori Rice:
- 2 cups white sushi rice
- 2 cups water
- 2 tbs rice vinegar
- 2 tbs sugar
- 1 tbs salt
- 1 sheet nori, toasted
- Rinse the rice until water runs clear, then soak for 30 minutes. Drain and add to a pot with 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce to low and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand 10 minutes.
- Combine the rice vinegar, sugar and salt in a small bowl and microwave 30-45 seconds, and stir to dissolve sugar and salt. Stir mixture into the rice, then crumble in the nori and stir to combine. Keep warm until ready to use.
For the Pickled Daikon:
- 3/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1 tbs kosher salt
- 1 clove garlic, halved
- 1/2 tsp turmeric
- 8 whole peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 lb daikon, peeled and cut into 1/4 inch strips
- In a saucepan, stir together water, vinegar, sugar, salt, garlic, turmeric, pepper, and bay leaf and bring to a boil. Stir until the sugar is dissolved, then remove mixture from heat and add daikon. Let cool to room temperature, then transfer to an airtight glass container. Store in the refrigerator.
For the hot sauce:
- 4 tbs goguchang (Korean chili paste)
- 1 tbs sesame oil
- 2 tsp rice vinegar
- 1 tbs sweet soy sauce (or 1 tbs soy sauce + 1 tsp brown sugar)
- 2 cloves garlic, grated
- 1 tbs sesame seeds
- water, to thin if needed
- Mix all ingredients together in a bowl and stir to combine.
For the Avocado Sour Cream:
- 1 avocado, removed from peel and pitted
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 1/4 cup sour cream
- Mash/stir all together in a small bowl. Keep refrigerated until needed.
- Find the largest wheat tortillas you can, and roll up your desired fillings. Enjoy and nap as needed.