I’m home for the holidays! And this means one thing for certain: We are going to be eating well. Really well. Korean food galore + my dad owns a couple sushi joints so we also eat sushi like crazy. It’s pretty awesome. Whenever my family gets together for a meal at home, we don’t mess around. There’s a ton of food. Everyone always complains that we gain at least 5 lbs. at every visit. Food and cooking and serving each other is definitely an act of love in this family. We cook for and feed each other to show we care and love each other.
I also *of course* LOVE seeing my kids playing with their cousins and with my parents (their grandparents). My husband’s parents are in Heaven so my girls only have one set of grandparents and they get spoiled rotten. Just yesterday Madeline was crying and didn’t want to finish her dinner (which, at home, would mean no dessert (fruit or whatever we were having that night)) but my mom still gave her dessert.
I’ve been cutting down on the juice for the girls simply because I’d rather they drink more milk and water. . and my sweet mother stocked up on as much as she thought the girls would like and need and bought 2 huge jugs of apple juice (from Costco), loaded up on the fruit and snack crackers. I was actually surprised that my dad didn’t load up on the ice cream because the last time we were visiting he literally had like 3 different flavors of ice cream PLUS Haagen–Dazs bars. And a lot of them.
They seriously get so spoiled when they are here, and not just with food and sweets but with hugs, kisses, and just time spent with Grandma and Grandpa. Since we don’t live in the same state (and my brother and sister also live out-of-state), I think the spoiling is okay since our visits are not as frequent as we would like and my parents are getting older. .
Today, we wanted to teach Phoebe how to make kimbap. I make kimbap (just plain) for her and her sister all the time: just dried seaweed wrapped around brown rice. But today, we wanted to show her how it’s really done. Korean Style. I know she’s only 5 but I know, one day, she will be doing the same thing with her kids.
So, mom and I get everything ready and get the table assembled so we can work quickly, put all the rolls together and eat! We have all the ingredients cooked and cut and ready to go. . and Phoebe and Madeline are at the table with us. . excited . . because Mom and I are excited. As we start getting all the kimbap rolls assembled and ready to cut, they *of course* start picking at the spinach .. and then the eggs. . and then can’t wait for us to finish so we cut some up and give them some to enjoy. The girls didn’t help much with the kimbap making and who really knows how much Phoebe will remember but they enjoyed some kimbap with me and their grandma, so it was a good day.
So, I’ll let my parents spoil them and give them sweets while we are here. . because, that’s what Grandparents are for, right? And I am truly thankful for this time and this visit with them over the holidays.
Happy Holidays everyone and I hope you enjoy!
Here’s how you roll, baby:
Once you have everything ready to go and the rice is ready, grab one piece of seaweed and put a thin layer of rice on it. Try to get it as even as possible and have the rice reach all the edges. A lot of people leave more than an inch (or 2) of dried seaweed at the top with NO rice covering it, so you can do that too and it should help the kimbap roll better. I went a little crazy here with the rice. .
Next, lay in all of your ingredients.
I wasn’t able to capture the actually rolling using the bamboo mat with photos (my apologies). You are basically using the mat to help you create the perfect roll. So, you roll the kimbap with the mat and squeeze pretty firmly so it stays together and then, you keep rolling until you have one roll or log.
Here it is.
Kimbap or Korean Seaweed Rice Rolls
- Dried seaweed nori- 4 sheets
- 2 cups cooked rice
- 2 tsp sesame oil + more for the spinach
- 1-2 tsp salt
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 pound of spinach blanched
- yellow pickled radish cut into long strips
- imitation crab cut into long strips
- flat fishcake cut into long strips
- Sesame seeds to sprinkle on at the end; optional
- Special equipment: Bamboo mat for rolling
- Make your rice according to package instructions. When the rice is almost cooled, mix in the sesame oil and salt. Taste.
- Whisk the eggs until evenly yellow and fry into a flat omelet. Cut the cooked egg into long strips. Boil the spinach, cut, season with a little sesame oil and salt (if desired) and set aside.
- Once you have all of your filling ingredients ready to go, assemble everything at a table. Lay down the bamboo sushi roller, place the dried seaweed on top and spread about ½ cup of rice onto 2/3 of the seaweed, leaving the top bare
- Lay all the ingredients in and using the bamboo mat, roll from the bottom (like you're rolling a sleeping bag), pressing down firmly to make the fillings stay in.
- As you continue to roll, pull the whole thing down towards the end of the bamboo mat.
- Dab some water along the top seam of the dried seaweed to hold the roll together and seal it closed. Set the roll aside and continue with other seaweed sheets. Cut each roll into 7-8 pieces. Sprinkle with sesame seeds if desired.