The first time I had ever eaten Korean food was when a few friends took me to a Korean restaurant for my 18th birthday. I remember being blown away by the flavors and just how insanely good it was. It’s one of those foods you just can’t stop eating. Since then I’ve had the fortune of going to South Korea many times and gorging on authentic Korean food, but in recent days I’ve been living in an area where the nearest Korean restaurant is almost 100 miles away so…not enough Korean food. As a result I learned to make my own respectable kimchi and other little dishes like kimchi pajeon (kimchi pancakes) and soondubu jigae (tofu stew) but whenever I attempted bulgogi it just never came out right.
And then I found this recipe on allrecipes.com posted by TNCOUCH. As soon as I read, “Just like my Korean mom makes it!” I had to try it.
Watch the video to see it in action and don’t forget to subscribe below!
The biggest challenge with making this dish, or any other dish that requires thin-cut meat (like the Japanese sukiyaki or shabu-shabu) is obtaining thin-cut meat. I once went to the butcher section of the local supermarket and asked for the thinnest sliced beef they can provide. I ended up with something that was thin enough for schnitzel but way too thick for my purpose. Thin-cut beef can be easily found at Asian supermarkets, but if you are like me and don’t have one nearby, you can cut it yourself!
I just get a big chuck roast (recipe calls for flank steak, but this is not absolutely necessary) and freeze it. You don’t want it to be frozen solid, but sort of half-solid. I bought a 3-pound chuck roast and had it in the freezer for 6 hours which for the size of the meat was just the right texture for easy cutting.
You also need a sharp relatively big knife. Do not try to do this with a dull knife. Dull knives are dangerous!
After getting the meat all sliced up, the rest of the recipe is a cinch! For some reason I always thought bulgogi was really complicated, but this recipe was simple and quite delicious!
I have heard from people and food shows that the secret to a great bulgogi is not only the meat but adding secret ingredients like Asian pear, but I thought this recipe tasted great without pear or anything fancy!