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Bulgogi:
Korean Barbecued Beef

What's The Big Idea?

One of Korea's most popular dishes, not only in the country itself but internationally as well. It has the added advantage that - unlike many Korean recipes - most of the ingredients can be easily found in a western supermarket.

It is important to slice the meat as thinly as possible. Some people recommend freezing it first, and then slicing it as it is partially defrosted. Because the beef is sliced thinly, it doesn't take long to cook, but I find it's easier to manage the thin slices under the grill, rather than on a barbecue. Another alternative is to stir-fry the meat and onion in a very hot frying pan with only a little oil.

Shopping List

Here's the list of what you need:

  • 1lb good quality beef, sliced thinly (see above)
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced or very finely chopped
  • 3 spring onions, chopped
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons sesame oil
  • 3 tablespoons pear juice (or white wine)
  • 1 medium onion, sliced

What To Do

  • Mix all the ingredients together in a non-metallic bowl. Cover and regrigerate for at least an hour, longer if possible
  • Pre-heat the grill to maximum. Arrange the slices of beef and onion on the grill pan and grill, turning once, until cooked to your liking
  • It is traditional to keep the cooking time to a minimum, and the temperature as high as possible, so the meat is seared on the outside but still rare inside
  • Serve with boiled short grain rice and pickles

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