Next-level Leftover Rice: Ham and Cheese Rice Burger 햄치즈 밥버거

Rice is a beautiful thing. Many times this manna from the heavens is brought down to the meager level of a “side,” but to me, perfectly cooked rice is the most important element in many of my dishes.

Whether you have a long grained light and fragrant batch of Basmati or a glistening pot of sticky, dense goodness, rice is good. Good is rice. Rice is love, Rice is life.

Just look at the glistening grains of rice topped with tiny fish, i.e. the best meal I had ever when I was in Kyoto.

And look at this perfect little triangle of rice complemented with the saltiness of mentaiko (salted fish roe) and the nuttiness of toasted laver I ate on Day 1 of my Osaka adventures.

But you ask me, what do I do when I only have a meager amount of rice left in my rice pot? Just enough so I can taste the delicious little beads that seem to be grown with help from the golden sunlight emitted from the glorious shining manes of a unicorn herd, but not enough to satisfy me?

Of course you’re going to use it to whip up something delicious. That something is in the form of one of the best hand-held meals of all time: the burger. Compact and easy to eat on-the-go, but utterly satisfying.

Korea has quite a few franchises selling ready-to-eat rice burgers for cheap with an array of fillings to choose from, but why not make your own so you can control all aspects of your burger and how it tastes? I found that rice burgers I have tasted in the past from these shops have a much higher rice to filling ratio than what I prefer. It’s also SO easy to prepare, even for the laziest of cooks.

Just a heads up: this recipe post is much different from my other ones in that I don’t have so many photographs taking you through the steps. Instead, I have made a Youtube video showing you how to make the burger. Please excuse the not-so-good quality of the video, because I have no filming equipment except for my iPhone 5 (yes, shudder. I will try to step up and have as nice video quality as my photographs in my other posts).

Ingredients you will need for one delicious leftover rice burger (although after tasting one you might make a batch of rice just for the sole purpose of making rice burgers):

Leftover rice (you will need just enough to make two patties)
Seasoning for the rice
1 teaspoon sesame oil
2 teaspoons furikake of your choice (if you don’t have access to any, just add an extra pinch of salt and a teaspoon of sesame seeds)
1/4 cup dried laver of your choice
1 slice cheese
1 fried egg
2 slices of spam
1/4 cup stir-fried kimchi
1/2 teaspoon sugar (for the kimchi)
1/4 cup tuna
1 tablespoon mayo (for the tuna)

Like my other recipes, I proclaim that it is you who is the boss of your rice burger, so make use of any random ingredients you might have at home. Use a small bowl with cling film to shape your burger. Please refer to my video for an exact demonstration on how I like to make my rice burger. This burger is perfect to make the night before for lunch the next day, or for picnics.


P.S. Rice in Korean is called bap. BAP is also the name of a Korean idol group. They are not named after the loving grains I speak of in this post, but rather BAP is an acronym that stands for Best Absolute Perfect (I am completely serious).


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