Tag Archives: eggplant

B-E-A-UTIFUL Bulgogi~

29 Aug

Last night saw the cooking of the second great batch of Bulgogi (that my husband demanded I make again because he loved it THAT much)! And, again, it did not disappoint!

The Bulgogi recipe I used came from this website (she has a bunch of delicious traditional Korean recipes compiled there). Bulgogi is a sweet, staple meat dish of South Korea. Typically, restaurants in Korea consist of tables that have open-flame grills built into them. Customers then cook their own meat (pre-marinated) at the table themselves! I am lucky (or, perhaps, unlucky?) enough to live within walking distance of traditional Korean style restaurant here in Seattle called Shilla. I will probably write a review of Shilla in another post, but for now I must sing it’s praises – the food is PHENOMENAL. It’s actually a Korean-Japanese restaurant, so they have a both types of cuisine, and it is quite entertaining to cook your own food right at the table over a warm open flame (especially in this chilly and rainy city)! But back to my main point… though Bulgogi is typically grilled, this recipe is cooked in a pan over the stove-stop, making it so easy to enjoy this delicious dish any time!

Aside from the marinating time for the beef (it must marinate for at least half a day), all in all, I’d say total preparation and completeion of this meal sit somewhere in the 30 minute range, at most. It takes almost no time to slice the onion and carrot, or to mix the ingredients for the sauce. Slicing the beef into super thin strips could take the longest time of all the steps, unless you can find thin-cut steaks at the grocery store, as I did. I bought about 1 pound (about equivalent to the 3 cups the recipe calls for) of already very thinly cut beef steaks, which I then only had to cut into small strips, saving time. Because the meat is sliced so thin, it cooks very quickly, and is done in no time!

Now, on to the recipe (again, from here, where she also has a great video for making it, if you want to watch it)! What you need:

  • 3 Cups (about 1 lb) of Beef (Sirloin, or any cut)
  • 1 Onion
  • ½ a Carrot (as you can see, I used baby carrots, because I had them. I chopped up about 10 of them)
  • 6 Tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 3 Tbsp Sugar
  • 3 Tbsp Asian Pear Juice (which I found very easily at the local asian market)
  • 3 Tbsp water (I substituted water in place of the cooking wine her recipe calls for)
  • 3 Tbs Green Onion
  • 1½ Tbsp Garlic
  • 1 Pinch Ginger Powder
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Seeds
  • ¼ tsp Black Pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Sesame Oil

As I’ve said, start with all your slicing. Slice the onion, 1/2 of the carrot (into long, thin strips), and the meat (again, into thin slices). Simple! Set aside in a large bowl or container. Slice the green onions as well, but put those aside to mix in with the sauce.

(Also, that’s my beautiful new knife!!! Thanks Ravi!! :D)

Then, just combine the sugar, soy sauce, sesame oil, Asian pear juice, water, ginger powder, pepper, garlic, green onion, and sesame seeds in a bowl, stirring well to mix.

Pour the sauce mixture over your meat, onion, and carrot (which should be set aside together in that large bowl you put them in). Get your hands dirty and mix it together well! Then cover with either saran wrap, or a lid (if your container has one – mine did), and toss in the fridge for at least 12 hours (both times I’ve made this, I marinated it for an entire day).

After marination is complete, take the meat out, toss it in a large skillet, and cook until the meat is done. I poured some, but not all, of the marinade over the beef while it was cooking, and it worked out well that way.

All that’s left to do is enjoy!

For the side dishes, I made:

Eggplant (가지 – Gaji) Bokkeum (볶음), which is basically eggplant and onion fried together in a skillet with garlic and soy sauce, and Soybean Sprout (콩나물 – Kongnamul) Muchim (무침):

Regarding the soybean dish, instead of Soybean sprouts, I used Mung Bean Sprouts (숙주나물 – Sukjunamul), because that was all my grocery store had. Fun fact: although mung beans are more widely available in Asia than soybeans, soybeans are more popular! But anyway… as I’ve never made this dish before and it’s been a while since I’ve had any, I cannot compare the taste of the soybeans against that of the mung beans, but the mung beans did taste delicious and thus, I believe them to be an adequate substitute. Both recipes made for very quick and delicious sides, and they complimented the Bulgogi nicely. All 3 recipes result in tastes that are the same (namely, the sesame flavors from the oil and seeds), but very different, at the same time. It is subtle enough to tell they all share something, but different enough for the dishes to each bring something diverse to the plate (literally!). The sweetness of the meat is complimented nicely by the saltiness of the eggplant, while the sprout dish adds a refreshingly neutral, earthy flavor that balances the salty eggplant dish.

All in all, it was a FANTASTIC meal, and I definitely suggest you all try it out!

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