Bulgogi Kale Ssam
Ssam is the perfect balanced bite. The sweet and salty bulgogi, the chewy rice, the funky and nutty ssamjang: a flavor-packed parcel!
Written by Doobydobap
Bulgogi Kale Ssam
Ssam (쌈) in Korean means wrapped. Ssam is essentially a little DIY lettuce wrap you make when enjoying Korean barbecue. The world is you ssam because you can customize it to your liking. However, it is not always easy to carry around a grill when going out for a picnic or packing lunch for work-- but that does not mean that you can not enjoy ssam. Today I've developed a recipe that recreates that perfect bite you get at kbbq, but portable!
This recipe is inspired by pumpkin leaf ssam my grandma used to make! However, finding fresh pumpkin leaf is quite difficult for many, including myself. I used kale for my video, but you can get creative with whatever vegetables you like. Any leafy, heat-resistant vegetables like mustard greens, collard greens, and cabbage all work for this ssam. The same applies to the filling. Customize the components your liking! I also love putting in rice, canned tuna, and a bit of gochujang for a quick and easy healthy lunch as well. You can also opt to make it vegan by omitting the bulgogi as well.
200g thinly sliced beef (rib eye preferred, shabu-shabu or Philly cheesesteak style)
½ onion, thinly sliced
½ cup light soy sauce
2 tbsp mirin
2 tbsp light brown sugar
1 tbsp sesame oil
¼ cup white onion
1 clove garlic
1 bundle kale
1 ½ cups cooked rice
½ tbsp gochujang
½ tbsp miso
½ tbsp soy sauce
½ tbsp honey
½ tbsp peanut butter
½ tbsp crushed walnuts
½ tsp sesame seeds
1 tsp sesame oil
Blend all the ingredients for the bulgogi sauce. Pour the sauce over the beef and onions and marinate for at least 15 minutes.
Drizzle 1 tbsp of oil and cook the bulgogi on medium-high heat for 10 minutes.
Take the bulgogi off the heat and let it rest at room temperature while preparing the rest of the ingredients.
Blanch the kale in boiling water for 1 minute on each side. This process will make the kale go even greener and easier to roll. Take it out of the water on a wired rack and pat down excess moisture.
Remove the stems by cutting away the harsh stalky part. Alternatively, you can roll the blanched kale with a rolling pin to smash down the stalks.
Prepare the ssamjang by mixing all the ingredients.
Add a spoonful of rice, bulgogi, and ½ tsp of the ssamjang.
Lay the roll on a piece of cling film and shape it into a round “money bag.” Use the cling film as a guide to tighten the ssam to a rounded shape.
Brush the wrap with sesame oil and garnish with sesame seeds.
Gently open the roll and place it on a parchment-lined bento box. The parchment paper prevents the bento from absorbing excess liquid and also keeps the rolls in place from moving around into a jumbled mess!
Garnish with pickles. Enjoy!
Hi, I’m Tina aka Doobydobap!
Food is my medium to tell stories and connect with people who share the same passion. My recipes are a culmination of my experiences. I hope you enjoy recreating them at home, and if you do, make sure to tag me on Instagram!
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