I love Koreatown in the springtime…

Wherein I blog about all things Korean in Los Angeles

K-town Galleria Companion Post: Bibimbap at the Galleria February 11, 2008

Filed under: restaurants — Raven @ 11:01 pm
Tags: ,

There’s a particular place in the Koreatown Galleria food court that specializes in bibimbap with a huge number of vegetables (17? 21? I forgot). I also forgot the name of the place (I’m doing well, aren’t I?), or rather I forgot to write down the name of it (yup, doing well). It’s located in the southwest corner, on the south wall. I think. Unless my sense of direction was off. Anyway, yes, I’ve been very imprecise. If anybody remembers the name of the place, please comment and tell me. πŸ™‚ EDIT: Thanks to reader SKFK, who very kindly checked on this for me, I now know that the name of the place is Yangji Express.

This was the first time I had tried non-dolsot bibimbap (a.k.a. bibimbap sans stone pot). Below is the complete ensemble. In the metal bowl you see the bibim part of the bibimbap, beside it is the bap part (the rice), and there’s a small dish of hot sauce. I used only a minimal amount of hot sauce when I combined everything, enough to get some flavor without getting too much spice.

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Non-dolsot bibimbap is probably the only Korean dish I could successfully recreate at home (the seaweed soup I tried to make for my birthday didn’t come out too well; it helps if you buy the right kind of seaweed). After all, you basically just take some vegetables and a soft-boiled egg, add rice and hot sauce, and you’re done. This particular place in the Galleria uses some non-traditional vegetables (I think corn was in there), but maybe they have to because they’re trying to get their veggie count as high as possible so they can advertise their impossibly high veggie count. It was good. It’s hard to go wrong with veggies, rice, and an egg. Plus no one tried to tell me I couldn’t have what I wanted, the way they do at certain bibimbap places in certain other Koreatown malls very close to the Galleria (for details go here). Of course, the fact that my lunch companion ordered in Korean may have helped.

P.S. To the person who found my blog yesterday by searching for the fat content in bibimbap, I imagine it depends on what you get in the bibimbap. Stick with veggies, rice, and hot sauce, and you’re probably doing pretty well. Add kalbi and, well, probably not so well. If you’re concerned about cholesterol, ask them to leave off the egg (although it won’t taste as good without it). Happy feasting on bibimbap!

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13 Responses to “K-town Galleria Companion Post: Bibimbap at the Galleria”

  1. youngkim Says:

    You are hard-core Korean, caucasian woman.

    You should also blog about the burning of Namdaemun that happened two days ago. It’s an extremely sad event as Korean National Treasure Number 1 was burnt down by an arsonist.

    It’d be the equivalent of the Parthenon being blown up or the Coliseum destroyed.

  2. Raven Says:

    People occasionally ask me if I’m Korean. Mind you, these are people who have met me, and they generally say it while looking at me…

    Wow, I wasn’t following the news (I rarely do), but the loss of Namdaemun is tragic. What’s some guy’s compensation payment compared to 600 years of history? You have to admit, though, it’s a bit ironic that the gate was supposed to block the energy of fire. I got that info here: http://www.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idUSSEO27238420080212?feedType=RSS&feedName=worldNews&rpc=22&sp=true

    At least they’re going to rebuild it, although it won’t be the same.

  3. Bon Vivant Says:

    Non-Dol Sot Bibimbap it is! Or Bibimbap Sans Dol Sot. You are so smart.

  4. James Says:

    Dolsot is one of my favorites… damn, I have to stop reading this blog late at night because all it does is get me hungry…

    The image of you trying to make seaweed soup on your b-day–and failing–is so precious and sweet and pitiful that I just want to give you a big hug and tell you that everything will be perfect on your next birthday!

    As for Namdaemun, that’s just inexcusable. But to be honest, I’ve never been sure why it’s National Treasure No. 1. Yes, it’s visible and symbolic, but I’ve always been so much more inspired by the Tripitaka Koreana and how those woodblocks have been preserved perfectly for all these hundreds of years by nothing more special than the wind and the clay floors. Now if THOSE carvings went up in flames, there would be hell to pay.

    BTW, what sign are you? if I may ask? I think you’re either a Virgo or an Aquarius…

  5. Raven Says:

    I’m a Leo. But as far as I can tell I’m pretty much the opposite of everything a Leo is supposed to be.

    I have a lot to learn about Korean history and culture. This is the first I’ve heard of the Tripitaka Koreana, although I’ve now looked it up and know what it is. I can’t imagine the dedication required to produce something like that. Well, I can, but if it were me I imagine I’d get partway through and go, “Wow, this is taking forever. I’m stopping now. Maybe I’ll finish later.” Good thing I wasn’t born back then and assigned to work on it.

    I’ll take the birthday hug. πŸ™‚ The soup tasted okay, just the seaweed was too tough. Oh well. I rarely make much of a fuss about my birthdays anyway.

  6. James Says:

    LMAO…. now THAT was a hilarious image….. Raven in Buddhist robes in the 13th century painstakingly carving out those wooden blocks and suddenly saying to the other monks, “Screw history, you guys finish carving, I’m going out for good dolsot.. See ya!”

  7. Raven Says:

    LOL!!! Yup, that would totally be me.

  8. SKFK Says:

    I think you’re referring to Yangji Express, based on the descriptions here:

    http://www.chowhound.com/topics/57696

    I’ve eaten at Koreatown Galleria plenty of times, but I’ve never paid attention to the restaurants’ names. I’m supposed to meet up with my wife at Koreatown Galleria tomorrow, and I’ll try to see if that’s the right place.

  9. Raven Says:

    It does sound like Yangji Express. If you’re able to check, that would be awesome!

  10. SKFK Says:

    Yeah, it is Yangji Express. Turns out it’s my favorite restaurant in Koreatown Galleria food court (I usually order jang guk bab or woo jok tang with an extra bowl of rice), but like I wrote above, I’ve never paid attention to the name before.

    I also noticed something interesting today. The restaurant right next to Yangji Express has no English name spelled out, but the Korean name on the sign is Jin Su Sung Chan (“glorious meal”). The thing is, the sign also has four big Chinese characters serving as background for the Korean name, and those four characters mean “Spring Summer Fall Winter.” As far as I can tell, there is absolutely no connection between the Korean name and the Chinese name, besides the fact that they are both made up of four characters. I can think of some situations where there could be mix-ups when Koreans and Chinese refer to the same place by two different names.

  11. Raven Says:

    Thanks so much for checking! I’ve updated my post and categories. Next time I go I’ll have to try one of the dishes you usually order.

    That’s very strange about the other restaurant with the two different names. Like you said, i could totally see a mix-up occurring. I wonder why they gave it two names.

  12. Lu Says:

    Hi–I don’t know how I found you but I seem to have you bookmarked. πŸ™‚ I’m a fellow non-Korean Koreanish person in Chicago. I wanted to comment about why Namdaemun is National Treasure No. 1 and not, say the Tripitaka. The numbering system of the treasures is not in order of their value to the nation. I’m pretty sure it was just the first one designated. Though I’m sure we’re all agreed that its loss is incalculable.

    I’m hungry now and I wish I lived in LA! I want some bibimbap with a ridiculous number of vegetables and lots of gojuchang (hot sauce). BTW, I think any fat in the bibimbap apart from the egg would come from the gochujang, which contains sesame oil. You take the pepper paste (which is the part that is really called gochujang) and mix it with sesame oil and I think maybe soy sauce.

  13. Raven Says:

    Hi Lu, thanks for bookmarking me! πŸ™‚ I suppose it makes sense to number the treasures in the order in which you designate them. If you order them according to importance, then if you miss an important one you have to go back and renumber everything!

    I didn’t think about the hot sauce adding fat to the bibimbap. I generally put the absolute minimum amount of hot sauce anyway, just enough to add some flavor without overwhelming my poor weak taste buds with spiciness.

    How is the Korean scene in Chicago?


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