Chef Eunjo "Jo" Park's Jowl Bacon Kimbap
The BLT is not just a sandwich. Bacon, lettuce, and tomato has come to be a versatile combo.
For Chef Eunjo "Jo" Park, Momofuku alum and former executive chef, it means kimbap, the Korean version of a sushi roll she fondly remembers from childhood picnics and school field trips. A signature dish on the celebrated Momofuku Kawi menu, there was an entire section dedicated to upscale versions of this Korean snack — from a lunchtime pickled vegetable version to dinner menu takes that included an elegant foie gras torchon.
Now a private chef, Jo has been cooking our Signature Heritage Jowl Bacon regularly for a client. When we approached her about creating a kimbap recipe for home cooks, she immediately responded: “pork jowl kimbap.”
Kimbap is a Korean rice roll wrapped in seaweed. Kim means seaweed and bap means cooked rice. The traditional kimbap filling is Danmuji or pickled daikon radish. Chef Jo Park’s variation on this Korean staple is a savory delicacy Pork Jowl Bacon BLT Kimbap.
Many confuse sushi and kimbap. The biggest difference is that one is Japanese and one is Korean. While sushi rice is seasoned with rice wine vinegar, kimbap rice is seasoned with sesame oil and as a result is more savory and offers more choices for fillings including egg omelet, an array of pickled vegetables, and even jowl bacon!
Kimbap is the ultimate travel snack because it is rolled up. Growing up Chef Jo would take hers to picnics and school field trips. Watch the video for all the steps on how to make her absolutely delicious Jowl Bacon BLT.
- 1 pack of dry toasted kimbap seaweed
- 2 cups short grain rice
- 2 tsp sesame oil
- Kosher salt, as needed
- 1 head of romaine lettuce heart, separate individual leaves and wash
- 1 pack of perilla leaf
- 3 Tbsp Ssamjang
- 3 Tbsp Kewpie mayo
- 1lb of Pork Jowl Bacon
- 1 ea avocado, cut into 1/2, peeled and into wedges
- 1-2 tomatoes, 1/4 cut and deseeded and into wedge, lightly salted and dried on paper towels
- 1 pack of Danmuji
Rinse, drain, and cook rice with 2 cups of water. When done, season with sesame oil and salt. Fluff it gently, being sure not to crush the rice grains.
Preheat the oven to 350º F. On a rack fitted with a tray, lay the pork jowl bacon in a single layer. Bake for 15-20 mins until nicely rendered and dark golden brown. Drain the fat. While the jowl bacon is cooking, make ssamjang mayo by mixing ssamjang, kewpie mayo and 1 tsp sesame oil.
Place gim (seaweed) on a cutting board. Scoop about 135g of rice (baseball size) and gently spread on to 3/4 of seaweed, leaving the top 1/4 free. Cut another piece of gim in half lengthwise, then place it in the center of your rice layer. This will keep the rice dry when you add the rest of your ingredients (dry rice will be easier to roll up).
Place the rest of the ingredients on top of the half piece of gim. Roll and cut into bite size pieces.