Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Bulgogi's Back in Town

When Harris Teeter recently advertised a London Broil special, "Buy one, get one free", I quickly grabbed up two heavy bundles. I paused, then grabbed two more. Bulgogi is serious business, after all.

I had my first bulgogi experience years ago, on the tail end of an anemia-filled vegetarian phase. Slowly, I came 'round to fish and chicken, but hadn't yet dabbled in honest-to-goodness meat. Then a friend invited me over for dinner, where Mom was cooking bulgogi and kimchi.

That night, with wide eyes and fluttering stomach, I crossed the great beef barrier, and never looked back. The 'national' dish of Korea had completely won me over, and I made sure I got the invite any time bulgogi was back on the menu.

Before I moved, I requested and gratefully received the recipe for both treasured dishes. And, almost as promptly, lost them. In my mind's eye, it had been easy enough to prepare, but nothing I did throughout the years came close to lighting those tastebuds with quite the same passion.

Last week, I found this recipe, and shortly thereafter, went on that fateful grocery trip.

Finally, all those years of waiting seemed to have paid off.


Rich, savory, sweet, and untraditionally shot through with garlic-chili paste, it was like being 22 and iron-deficient, all over again.

This time, the recipe's mine. Unless the Internet goes down. Now, to continue my search for the kimchi...


BULGOGI (REAL BULGOGI)
adapted from cooks.com and Tina. I vouch not for the authenticity of the recipe, only it's soul-satisfying flavour.

2 lb London Broil, thinly sliced
1 tbls sesame oil
1/4 cup sugar (or little bit more or less, depending on how sweet or salty you want it)
4 green onions, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 cloves fresh garlic, minced
2-4 Tablespoons garlic-chili paste
4 cups LOW-SODIUM soy sauce
pepper, to taste

In a bowl mix sesame oil, sugar, both onions, garlic, garlic-chili paste and soy sauce, until everything is well combined.
Add the meat, and make sure it is completely submerged.
Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Grill to desired degree of doneness.

s'kat's notes: I took the leftover marinade and boiled it for about 5 or so minutes to use as a sauce for the finished dish. While I'm not entirely sure how safe that is (comments?), nobody got sick. We had this with a bit of rice, wrapped in lettuce leaves.

15 Comments:

Blogger Kevin said...

S'kat,

That sounds great! And I just got a new grill. As for the sauce, shouldn't be any problem at all after boiling it.

April 05, 2006 4:49 PM  
Blogger Michele said...

Mmmm! That looks good. I'm always looking for different ways to prepare London Broil and I will be trying yours soon! Thanks for sharing!

April 05, 2006 11:11 PM  
Blogger nosheteria said...

WooHoo! Bring on the Bulgogi! I've had it out, but never tried to make it on my own. Thanks for the recipe.

April 06, 2006 12:47 AM  
Anonymous sher said...

Years ago I had this in a Korean restaurant in Chicago. It was wonderful--but I couldn't remember the name of it. Thanks!! It looks fabulous!

April 06, 2006 4:06 AM  
Blogger s'kat said...

Thanks for the re-assurance Kevin! I'll have to hop on over to your blog, and check out what you christen your new darlin' with.

Michele, I certainly hope that you'll enjoy this!

Nosh, it is stunningly easy, and so good! This was the first time my husband had the homemade version too, and just loved it.

Sher, glad to bring back the memory of a good meal!

April 06, 2006 7:35 AM  
Blogger iamchanelle said...

i can't get over the serving platter! WHERE did you find that? way cool!

April 06, 2006 9:23 AM  
Blogger s'kat said...

iamchanelle, it was a holiday gift, but I'm pretty sure that it was purchased at T.J. Maxx.

April 06, 2006 10:28 AM  
Blogger Mona said...

S'kat, that looks amazing. And your timing couldn't be any more perfect. Swimster is Korean and he's been dying for me to try and cook Korean with him. Now we have somewhere to start from. Thanks so much. It looks like it came out awesome...the pictures are mouthwatering indeed!
Bulgogi here we come!

April 06, 2006 11:33 AM  
Anonymous vanessa said...

s'kat, you would've made my mother proud :)
as a girl who grew up with it, i say honestly that it looks delicious!

April 06, 2006 1:15 PM  
Anonymous terisa said...

Bulgogi rocks! I like to mix up the marinade, then reserve half. Put the marinade in a heavy-duty plastic bag, add the meat, squeeze out as much air as possible and seal the bag. Then squish everything around and put the bag in the fridge. You can take it out and squish it around every so often to make sure all the meat is getting well-sauced.

That leaves the other half of the marinade to be slowly and safely reduced into a nice thick flavorful sauce that even your veggie friends can enjoy over rice.

April 06, 2006 4:22 PM  
Blogger Barbara (Biscuit Girl) said...

I LOVE bulgogi! I'm gonna have to try your recipe.

April 06, 2006 7:56 PM  
Blogger s'kat said...

Mona, that's awesomely serendipitous! I've also got a gal bi recipe I'm hoping to make soon... if so, I'll post it as well.

Aww, Vanessa, thank you so much!

Terisa, great idea on reserving half the marinade upfront! I'm also very fond of using plastic bags to marinate my meat. :)

Barbara, a little side of kimchi would make this the perfect meal.

April 07, 2006 9:05 AM  
Blogger eatdrinknbmerry said...

S'kat, that looks great. Regarding the reduced sauce, should be ok b/c the heat will kill the 'bad guys' in the marinade. I'd like to know how your recipe taste with the kalbi beef ribs. Mmmmm.

April 11, 2006 2:33 AM  
Blogger Unalicious! said...

This is always one of my favourites, and bless my mom for giving me the recipe (as well as making some and freezing it for me whenever she comes to visit!)

If you don't have a grill, you can just dump the entire lot into a pan, marinade and all. It's great in the winter over rice because the marinade will reduce down into a sauce.

As well, use Japanese soy sauce, which is lighter and sweeter than Chinese soy sauce. Brown sugar instead of white sugar gives it another depth of flavour. Be sure to use the roasted sesame oil. Regular sesame oil just doesn't compare.

Good luck finding a kimchi recipe!

April 28, 2006 11:21 PM  
Blogger s'kat said...

ed&bm: I'll bet that would be righteous!

unalicious! Thanks for the advice on type of soy sauce. The first time I made this, I used an unrecognizable brand with characters all over the front- perhaps it was Japanese? It was definately 'lighter'. Thaks for visiting the blog!

May 03, 2006 1:53 PM  

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