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Inbebo Recipes: Korean Tuna Gimbap

Inbebo Recipes: Korean Tuna Gimbap

Today, we’re excited to share a recipe for the delicious, comfort food: tuna gimbap (chamchi-gimbap: 참치김밥). The flaky, salty, and sweet tuna tastes delightful and goes well with rice and the other fillings: avocado, yellow pickled radish, and crab sticks. The various tastes and textures make for a lot of variety in one bite! 

Ingredients: Makes 4 rolls (Serves 2 to 4) 
For rice: 

  • 4 cups freshly made white fluffy rice 
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt 
  • 1 teaspoon white or apple vinegar 
For tuna filling: 
  • 1 (5-ounce) can of tuna, preferably oil-packed 
  • 1 garlic clove, minced 
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil 
  • 1 tablespoon soy sauce 
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper 
  • 1 tablespoon honey (or sugar), optional 

Prepare the artificial crab sticks: 

  • Heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Swirl the skillet around so the oil evenly coats it. 
  • Add the crab sticks, white side down. Cook for about 1 minute until the bottoms turn soft and light brown. 
  • Turn them over with a spatula and cook for another 30 seconds. 
  • Remove from the heat and transfer to a large platter. 

Prepare the danmuji (yellow pickled radish) and avocado: 

  • Put the 4 strips of danmuji on the platter, next to the crab sticks. 
  • Cut the avocado in half lengthwise and remove the seed. Slice it lengthwise while it’s still in its shell. 
  • Scoop the slices out with a large spoon and transfer them to the platter. Squeeze the lemon over the avocado to prevent it from going brown. 


Roll the gimbap: 

  • Divide the rice into 4 portions. Place a sheet of gim on a gimbal (a bamboo mat for making gimbap), with the shiny side down. Evenly spread 1 portion of rice over the gim, leaving a 1-inch margin uncovered along the top edge. 
  • Divide the tuna mixture into 4 portions. Spread one portion across the middle of the rice, in a strip lengthwise. Add a strip of danmuji, some avocado, and a crab stick. 
  • Use both hands to pick up the bottom edge of the mat. Use it to roll the gim up and over the fillings so the rice surrounds them 
  • Squeeze the mat gently and then continue rolling the gim in the mat, squeezing the mat regularly to get a tight roll. 
  • Unroll the mat and remove the roll from the mat. Set the roll aside, with the seam down. 
  • Repeat with the remaining ingredients to make 3 more rolls. 
  • Gently brush the rest of the 2 teaspoons sesame oil over the rolls by hand or with a basting brush. 
  • Sprinkle the sesame seeds over top. 
  • Cut each roll into ⅓ to ½-inch slices with a sharp knife. For easier slicing, wipe your knife with a wet paper towel (or kitchen cloth) as you go. 


Serve: Arrange the slices on a plate or pack them in a lunchbox. The gimbap can be kept at room temperature for several hours. 


Source: Maangchi (May 4, 2022) 

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