Kimbap (김밥) is a commonly known Korean dish. 김 means kim (or gim), which translates to seaweed, and 밥 means bap (rice). In shorter terms, kimbap is a rice seaweed roll. This dish is made with steamed rice and other ingredients that may involve meats or vegetables. It is then rolled in a sheet of seaweed and sliced into bite-size proportions.
There are times where kimbap and sushi may be compared, but unlike sushi, kimbap uses many cooked or seasoned ingredients, such as rice that is seasoned with sesame oil and salt. Sushi, on the other hand, uses raw ingredients, and the rice is seasoned with vinegar and sugar.
Kimbap is the sandwich of Korea. Sandwiches of the West are very common and can be a daily meal for any time of the day, but instead of constantly eating PB&Js, many change up the ingredients between all the different cheeses and meats. Like sandwiches, there is also a variety of kimbap to choose from, so one will never be stuck having the same meal!
Here are six different types of kimbap:
- Chungmu kimbap (충무김밥)
Chungmu kimbap Is not a commonly known version of kimbap, made with just a rice filling and wrapped in seaweed. It’s best served with spicy dishes, a famous pairing being sweet and spicy tteokbokki. Imagine being able to dip this kimbap into a bowl of warm spicy rice cakes. Sounds so heavenly!
- Yachae kimbap (야채김밥)
Yachae kimbap is a common version of kimbap made with vegetables as its main ingredient. It would be a great choice for vegetarians who are looking to try something new. Not only is it tasty, but also healthy.
- Samgak kimbap (삼각김밥 )
Samgak kimbap is in a triangle shape and can be filled with one ingredient such as tuna, vegetables, kimchi, crab etc.; and wrapped in seaweed. It’s usually sold in convenience stores, and perfect when on the go and in need of a quick bite.
- Soegogi kimbap (소고기김밥)
Soegogi kimbap includes bulgogi, a very popular marinated beef that is eaten in Korea. Although bulgogi eaten on its own is already heavenly, imagine eating the perfect amount of rice, vegetables and meat all combined into one bite-size proportion! It truly is something to make your mouth water.
- Kimchi kimbap (김치김밥)
Kimchi kimbap is filled with one of Korea's favorite side dishes: kimchi! Perfect when in need of something spicy and flavorful, this kimbap has red coloring in the rice due to the kimchi and goes great with a bowl of stew. Dip or don’t dip your kimbap piece, either way, you’ll be satisfied with the flavorful mixtures.
- Gye-ran kimbap (계란김밥)
One can see the difference from this particular kimbap from the others. It is wrapped in an egg rather than seaweed. Although the wrapping is different, the same ingredients may be used. All up to one's satisfactory needs.
So, the next time you’re craving kimbap, remember the endless choices! Whether in need for something spicy, something meaty, or even something filled with vegetables (for the vegetarian members of the Fever Fam); remember to snatch some kimbap at a local convenience store with a perfectly cold banana milk.
Enjoy the various flavors and leave your tastebuds satisfied!
Written by Andrea Villarreal