Since we arrived in Korea, I have been cooking homemade meals much more often. That’s not to say I didn’t cook much in the US, probably 4-5 meals per week there. However, now we have been trying to be a little healthier and have not been going out to eat as often as we did when we lived in the states. Luckily, I love to cook and have finally gotten over my fear of a gas stove!
I don’t cook too many Korean recipes at home, because there’s obviously a plethora of Korean food right out my front door. However, just like my dak chim, I want to share some favorite Korean recipes so that you can recreate them at home! Today I am discussing one of Korea’s most famous foods: bulgogi! There’s only one thing you need to know about bulgogi: it’s marinated. Therefore, it’s amazing. I don’t think there’s ever been a marinated meat that I didn’t love.
I am using a recipe from a food blogger this time, and you can find the original recipe here. (Pinterest has opened a new world of recipes to me; I love it!) This recipe is so much easier to follow than the dak chim. I think the ingredients will be much easier for you to find; you may already have them in your kitchen! I can easily go to the Korean grocery store and buy bulgogi meat sliced, marinated, and ready to go. However, that’s not much of a challenge, so I started with an unsullied slab of sirloin just as the recipe calls for.
Bulgogi (yield: 4 servings)
Whisk together all ingredients except beef, onions, and rice. Once most of the sugar is dissolved, add beef and onions to the marinade. Make sure you have already sliced your beef! The original recipe says to “massage the marinade with your hands into each slice of beef.” (I may have been a little too thorough with this. I made sure to pick up each slice, diligently massage it, and ask if it has been stressed lately.) Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Determine how long it will take your rice to cook; depending on the type you use, it could take from 5-30 minutes. Cook your rice.
To cook the bulgogi, heat a tablespoon of oil in a frying pan. (I used my electric skillet, set at about 375.) When the pan is hot, place the beef in single layers. Fry on each side to desired doneness; less cooking time will result in juicier bulgogi, more cooking time produces crispier edges. It is a matter of preference!
Serve bulgogi over rice & enjoy!
Isn’t that easy? I think it is a perfect meal for summer time, because you are only using heat for just a few minutes while you are frying the meat and cooking the rice. It is quick, easy, and, most importantly, marinated! As some of you know or may be discovering, I am very flexible when I interpret recipes. I may add extra ingredients, or leave some out; I actually marinated this for almost three hours instead of 1 because of how my schedule worked out. Part of the fun in cooking is experimenting, and I think this is a recipe that could be easily manipulated. Add some red pepper paste for a spicier spin, or try pork instead of beef. Let me know what you create!
PS: You should know how dedicated I am to getting pictures for you all; the behind the scenes of the blog is not always so pretty. Jared was at work during the meat slicing and massaging madness, so I had to do a little multitasking. I had my camera set up with a timer and sitting on top of a bowl. I would start the timer, cut or massage the meat while the camera clicked a few times, run to wash my hands, check the pictures, correct the focus/angle/my awkwardness, and then repeat that process about four times. My left pinky finger insists on sticking straight up when I cut meat; I did not know that I did this until I was looking at the pictures. I had to focus on keeping it tucked down so that I didn’t look like the prissiest girl who ever sliced beef! I hope you enjoy the pictures as well as the recipe!
Source: Currah, Alice. “Marinade this: Bulgogi Recipe- Korean Barbequed Beef.” Sweet and Savory Life.