Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Korean beef - Bulgogi

A year or so ago, my daily newspaper har a recipe for what they called "Korean Fire-Beef". Irresistible, right? I made it, we loved it. I made it again, and again. Mmm. It's basically very thinly sliced meat (I use entrecote, um, I think that's sirloin in some countries), marinated in ginger, garlic, sesame oil and japanese soy sauce. The proper name is Bulgogi - but doesn't Korean Fire-Beef sound so much better?? I certainly think so!

I made it the other night for Lena and Nico, who were visiting their new kitten. The little rascal Habanero is moving in with them when he's old enough. They already have a cat - Eminem - who's actually the father of this litter. Let's hope he likes his son.

This made plenty for four people, with some leftovers that were perfect for lunch. You can skip the rice and just eat the bulgogi, if you're so inclined.

Bulgogi - Korean Fire-Beef
Serves 4-5

800 g beef (preferably entrecote/sirloin)
2 very ripe pears
3 small yellow onions
1 leek, white and light green part
1 thumb-sized piece of ginger
50 ml sesame oil
200 ml korean or japanese soy sauce
7-8 cloves of garlic
3 tbsp sugar
3 tbsp sesame seeds
2 tsp cracked black pepper

lettuce cups

dipping sauce:
equal amounts of japanese soy sauce and sweet chilli sauce
1 clove of garlic

Slice the meat very, very thinly. I usually freeze mine, and slice it when it's partly defrosted. Mash the pears, and mix with the meat as a pre-marinade. Slice the onions into half-moons, grate the ginger, grate the garlic, slice the leek into thin rounds. Set aside half the onion and leek. Mix the rest of the onions, leek, garlic, ginger, soy sauce, sugar, pepper and sesame oil. Pour over the meat, and marinate for at least two hours. (And not a whole lot longer, I'd say - this is not something you want to leave overnight.)

Rinse and dry the lettuce, and separate into cups - try to keep them as whole as you can. Get the rice ready - and if you can, use a fragrance jasmine rice. For the dipping sauce, simply mix soy, chilli sauce and grated garlic.

Heat up a big pan or a wok, and start frying the meat and the marinade, adding the reserved leek and onions as you do so. You'll have to do it in batches. Keep the heat on high.

To eat, put some of the meat mixture in a lettuce cup, and pour over some of the dipping sauce. Fold into a package. (Or indeed, dip the whole lettuce package, if you can.) I like my rice on the side, but you can pack it, too, into the lettuce. Or just skip the rice altogether.


Anonymous said...

I can totaly recomend this wonderful dish, now that I have the recipe I definitely try to make it my self. Thank You Anne for a super nice dinner!

Anonymous said...

I love bulgogi! ^-^ Your recipe differs from the one I usually use, but it seems very delicious. I didn't know pears could be included in bulgogi. I will definetly try it your way next time I make it. Can't wait! =)

Anonymous said...

I'm korean.
Your recipe is so great,
but I have a little suggestion.
Ssasame oil is vegetable thing,
but it has high calory.
I think will be good with 2~30ml than 50ml(10ml sasame oil has about 100Kcal)

Anne said...

Sunny, thanks for the tip! I'll try that next time!

Anonymous said...

My mouth is watering that photo is amazing!!

Anne said...

Thank you Pamela :)

Anonymous said...

Hi. I came across your site by chance and saw your bulgogi recipe. I was written up in our local paper here in Portland with my own version of the recipe. :)


Anne said...

Rick - good for you!! :)

Red Grant said...

Try it on open flame grill with Japanese white charcoal, packs even more flavor.

That's the original authenthic way.