This week’s Friday Food Definition is inspired by my recent trip to Maki: How do you roll? with Alan (Korean boyfriend). I posted this really low resolution cell phone video in the blog post for Maki to demonstrate the machine Maki uses to cut their sushi. In the background you can catch Alan telling me that this is a “really Korean dish.” He’s talking about kimbap. He was so swayed that he even asked the guys there if the owner is Korean. Turned out the owner is neither Japanese or Korean. ;) He’s Chinese.
This prompted me to share with you the slight differences between Kimbap vs. Maki. Overlaps in cultures fascinate me. Don’t they you?
Makizushi, Maki, or Makimono
Sushi is cooked vinegar rice which is commonly topped with other ingredients, such as fish or other seafood, or put into rolls. Sliced raw fish alone is called sashimi, as distinct from sushi. Sushi served rolled inside or around dried and pressed layer sheets of seaweed (or nori) is makizushi.
Gimbap or kimbap
Gimbap or kimbap is a popular Korean fast food made from steamed white rice (bap) and various other ingredients, rolled in gim (sheets of dried seaweed) and served warm in bite-size slices. Gimbap is often eaten during picnics or outdoor events, or as a light lunch, served with danmuji or kimchi. It is similar, but not identical, to makizushi, one of the many variants of the Japanese rice-based dish sushi.
Similarity between Japanese Maki-zushi & Kimbap
Gimbap is derived from Japanese futomaki (lit. “large rolls”) style maki-zushi sushi rolls and became popular among Korean people in the modern era, but differs in the way the rice is seasoned and in the fillings. In sushi, relatively large amounts of sweetened rice vinegar is added to the rice and sesame oil is traditionally not used, as it is in gimbap. Korean gimbap generally does not contain raw fish and is prepared with sauteed beef, sausage, ham, fish cake, or crab stick. Unlike Japanese maki, gimbap is usually not served with wasabi, soy sauce, or sushi ginger.
And there you have it. I haven’t had Kimbap in a while… I suddenly have a craving.
Hope you got your taxes done :) Here’s to refunds!
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