International Cultural Sharing: Kimbap

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Kimbap is a cylindrical Korean rice roll. It is made of seaweed (in Korean word: Kim) layer with steamed rice (Bap as Korean word), and fillings, then cut to fine pieces. The traditional fillings include seasoned vegetables, egg, meat and/or imitation crab; more modern fillings now go for any kind of food from spicy to fresh flavors.

Kimbap was actually derived from the famous Japanese Sushi during the early 20th century. Only that Kimbap only puts fillings at the middle, and rice is added with sesame oil, sushi has much more variety, e.g. rice with fillings at top. Sushi uses vinegared rice, and the cylindrical sushi is made with the help of a bamboo mat which wraps the sushi in a way that seaweed lays within and outer rice.

Both sushi and Kimbap are considered as a casual snack for the locals to have. At young, I mostly made sushi with friends for picnics and school outings. I recalled the memories when friends came over, to cook vinegared rice, and prepared for the fillings to add on top of the bamboo mat.

I did not know about the Korean styled “sushi” until adulthood when I was exposed more with the international cultures. I am amazed how the exchange of cultures can influence people’s lifestyles. It brings the diversity of life, and sharing of own knowledge/talents.

From small bits of food snack, we connect in the deep way. For this, I am grateful.

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