Bulgogi, Aka 'Fire Meat'
- 1kg thinly sliced beef sirloin (sliced to about 2-3mm thick) *
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 medium-sized brown onion, peeled
- 1 nashi/Asian pear, peeled
- 2/3 cup Korean soy sauce (’kanjang’), but you can substitute it with Japanese Tamari Soy or Chinese light soy sauce in a pinch
- 2 tbsp toasted sesame seed oil
- 2-4 tbsp caster sugar (this will depend on the sweetness of your pear)
- 2 spring onions, washed and finely sliced
- Freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
- Using an extremely fine grater, turn the onion and pear into pulp (alternatively, you can just blend till liquid), then mix together with the soy sauce and crushed garlic, then taste for sweetness. If it’s not quite sweet enough for your tastes, add all the sugar, but if it’s close, just add 1-2 tbsp of sugar, mix and taste again.
- Add the sliced meat to the bowl, then pour the marinade over the top, then add the sesame seed oil, sliced spring onion and cracked pepper and massage all the marinade into the meat for about 1-2 minutes, making sure none of the slices of beef are stuck together and that the marinade has been distributed evenly throughout.
- Pour into an airtight container and store in the fridge for at least a few hours, ideally overnight, and cook over a griddle or in an unoiled non-stick frying pan - the reason for that is that the pan juices are extremely tasty, and can be very nice poured over your bowl of rice!
Bulgogi (Korean sweet soy marinated beef) is one of the most popular Korean dishes around, as well as being one of the most versatile. It can be cooked up and served alongside rice and 'banchan' (side dishes), or can be cooked WITH veggies or 'dang myun' (sweet potato cellophane noodles - different from regular cellophane noodles) or even served in the style of a lettuce wrap! For more serving ideas and photos, visit my food blog - Kitchen Wench * - Most Asian butchers will be able to slice the beef for you if you let them know. If not, then the way to do it yourself is to half freeze it so that the piece of beef is almost solid through, then use a sharp kitchen knife to slice pieces, about 2-3mm thick, against the grain. If the beef thaws and becomes soft and hard to slice during this process, just pop it back in the freezer to firm up for an hour or two before continuing.