William Kim, a South Korea native and Kendall College graduate, learned French cooking from greats such as Jean Banchet and Pierre Pollin before landing at Charlie Trotter’s and working his way up to sous-chef. He followed that with stints at Trio in Evanston, Susanna Foo in Philadelphia, and Bouley Bakery in New York—then eventually returned to Trotter’s in 2004, where he was named chef de cuisine. He went on to make his name as executive chef at Le Lan in 2006 and ultimately followed his heart and opened UrbanBelly (3053 N. California Ave.; 773-583-0500), the insanely popular noodle/dumpling restaurant he’d always wanted to do.

Urban Belly’s Short Rib Fried Rice
Yield: 2 people
Total prep time: 20 minutes (active); 24-hour marinade

Basmati rice
Cook time: 15 minutes

1 cup Basmati rice
1 ½ cups water

1. Place rice in a 2-quart sauce pot, and add water.
2. Bring to heat, and cook rice on medium-high flame for about 15 minutes, or until the rice is tender to the bite.

Marinated short ribs

Prep time: 20 minutes

1 ½ cups water
¾ cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons light (untoasted) sesame oil
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup whitesugar
¼ cup onion, chopped
¼ cup garlic, chopped
½ pound Korean-style short ribs
3 tablespoons vegetable oil

1. Combine the water, soy sauce, sesame oil, and sugars in a saucepot, and heat, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved.
2. Remove from heat and add garlic and onion, stirring to combine. Allow mixture to cool. Transfer mixture to a blender or use a handheld blender to purée mixture until smooth.
3. With a tenderizing mallet, pound the short ribs as thin as possible but taking care not to tear the meat. Place the pounded meat into a plastic container or resealable plastic bag.
3. Spoon cooled marinade over short ribs, cover or seal, and refrigerate overnight.
4. The following day, place a wok or pan over medium-high heat and add vegetable oil, swirling to coat. Remove short ribs from marinade and add to pan. Sauté short ribs for 2-3 minutes, turning once. Remove the short ribs from the pan and set to the side, keeping warm.

Fried Rice

3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large egg
1 tablespoon scallions, sliced
1 ½ teaspoons garlic, minced
1 ½ teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
1 teaspoon garlic chili sauce (sambal)
1 teaspoon fresh or frozen lemongrass, minced
1 tablespoon fresh pineapple, diced
1 cup cooked basmati rice (see recipe above)
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon lime juice
¼ teaspoon fresh grated lime zest

Final preparation
1. Place a wok or pan over high heat. When pan is very hot, add the oil and swirl to coat the bottom of the pan. Crack the egg into the pan and, using a fork, scramble the egg.
2. Once egg is scrambled, add all ingredients except the fish sauce, lime juice, and lime zest. Stir mixture constantly, taking care not to allow them to burn.
3. When the rice is fragrant, after 45 seconds to 1 minute, add the fish sauce and lime juice, and stir to combine all ingredients. Remove from heat.
4. Spoon fried rice into two bowls, and sprinkle with grated lime zest. Lay warm short ribs over the rice, and enjoy!

Film: Uji Films