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Bulgogi – America’s Favorite Korean Food

What would a hapa-themed blog be without a bulgogi (불고기) recipe? Perhaps one of the most popular Korean dishes among Westerners, bulgogi is thinly sliced beef with a sweet and savory flavor.

The marinade for your bulgogi meat is also available here, which you could also use the next time you grill steaks or chicken.

For the type of meat to buy, look for grass-fed ribeye or strip steak. If you’re at a butcher, ask if they can do paper-thin slices for you. If you’re near an Asian market, they may have bulgogi meat readily available. If neither of these are available to you–no worries. Just stick your meat in the freezer for about 30 minutes to make it a little harder. This will make it easier for you to cut into very thin strips.

Ingredients:

1 lbs of meat

1 small onion

Mama Chong’s Meat Marinade:

  • 4 Tablespoons of soy sauce or coconut aminos
  • 4 Tablespoons of water
  • 2 Tablespoons of sesame oil, split
  • ½ Teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons of sugar (or for a healthier option, put ½ of an Asian pear or ½ of a ripe kiwi into a food processor and add)
  • 2-3 Garlic cloves, smashed and chopped (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder if you’re out of garlic)

Place the meat and sliced onion into a bowl, add the sugar or fruit puree and mix with your hands for 1-2 minutes to tenderize the meat. After that, you can add the remaining marinade ingredients and again mix with your hands. 

Cover and keep in the refrigerate for at least 1 hour, but overnight is best. 

To cook: put the oil into a pan and turn heat on high. Once the pan is very hot, add the meat. There will be a lot of juice that is released from the meat, do not remove from the pan until this has been evaporated/reabsorbed. 

At this point, you have multiple options. The first – garnish with green onion, the remaining teaspoon of sesame oil and roasted sesame seeds and serve with rice.

Other options: bulgogi tacos (recipe here), or you can set aside and then stir fry vegetables (recipe coming soon). You can even use this meat for a variation of a cheesesteak sandwich (recipe coming soon). 

Bulgogi

Dinner Korean
By Janice Yucel Serves: 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes Cooking Time: 10 Minutes Total Time: 30 Minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 lbs of meat
  • 1 small onion
  • Mama Chong’s Meat Marinade:
  • 4 Tablespoons of soy sauce or coconut aminos
  • 4 Tablespoons of water
  • 2 Tablespoons of sesame oil, split
  • ½ Teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 Tablespoons of sugar (or for a healthier option, put ½ of an Asian pear or ½ of a ripe kiwi into a food processor and add)
  • 2-3 Garlic cloves, smashed and chopped (or 1 teaspoon garlic powder if you’re out of garlic)

Instructions

1

Place the meat and sliced onion into a bowl, add the sugar or fruit puree and mix with your hands for 1-2 minutes to tenderize the meat. After that, you can add the remaining marinade ingredients and again mix with your hands. 

2

Cover and keep in the refrigerate for at least 1 hour, but overnight is best. 

3

To cook: put the oil into a pan and turn heat on high. Once the pan is very hot, add the meat. There will be a lot of juice that is released from the meat, do not remove from the pan until this has been evaporated/reabsorbed. 

4

Garnish with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, green onion, sesame seeds. Serve with rice.

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