May 18th, Friday:
- Bibimbap Rice Bowl (Pork, Egg, Bean Sprout, Japanese Parsley, Zenmai Fern, Spinach)
- Ankake Soup (Tofu, Trefoil, Golden Oyster Mushroom)
- Salt-Grilled Trout
Bibimbap is a Korean dish in which Korean style namul and meat is placed on top of rice and mixed together. “Bibim” means to mix, and “bap” means rice.
I can’t say I have ever eaten real Korean bibimbap. When I flew Korean Airlines to France, bibimbap was served both there and back and it was spicy to the point of being inedible. However, school lunch bibimbap is not spicy at all and I enjoy the flavour quite a lot. I doubt it tastes like korean bibimbap at all, a hypothesis underscored by the fact that one teacher whose favorite lunch is this bibimbap has no special affinity for Korean food at all. The main disadvantage to this lunch is that since I am not a fan of meat, I have to pick out the scary pork and fat bits before I eat the remaining vegetables and eggs. I set a rather poor example for the students. Furthermore, I would like to comment on the fish. I did not like fish in America. Last time I ordered fish at a restaurant (visiting the sunny state of California), I could not even finish eating it, it was so bad. But fish in Japan in invariably delightful, and today’s trout was no different. I love you, Japan. By the way, ankake soup is a soup made by thickening the broth with potato starch, in the method so commonly used in (slimy) Chinese dishes.