Maeun Bulgogi 매운 불고기 (Spicy Korean Barbecue Beef)


Prep time: 25 minutes
Cook time: 10-15 minutes
Marination time: minimum 8 hours to overnight
Ingredients: Serves 4 people
2 lbs rib eye steak
5 tbsp sugar
1 cup soy sauce
2 tbsp sesame oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp ginger, minced
2 tbsp Mirin (cooking wine)
4 tbsp gochujang (red pepper paste)
1 tbsp gochugaru (red pepper flakes)
1 onion, julienned
1 carrot, julienned
3 green onions, cut into 2-inch pieces
sesame seeds (garnish)


1. Try to cut the beef into paper-thin slices, set aside in glass bowl.
2. Mix all the sauce ingredients together minus the gochujang (red pepper paste). Add the sauce to the meat, coat well by hand. Marinate in the refrigerator for a minimum of a few hours, although overnight refrigeration is recommended.
3. After marination, cook the meat on medium high heat using a non-stick skillet or frying pan (adding a little oil is optional). Add 1 tbsp of gochujang (more if you want it spicier) for each serving. Cook until meat loses its pink color or until browned, about 5~7 minutes. Add vegetables during the halfway mark to retain their crispness.
4. Serve hot with rice and banchan (side dishes) including lettuce varieties for wrapping. Red leaf lettuce, Boston bibbs, and romaine lettuce work best.
*For easier slicing of the beef, stick the beef in the freezer for about 20~25 minutes. This will make cutting much easier; we’re looking for paper-thin slices.
**Although selecting premium cuts of meat is recommended for better taste and quality, my mom often uses cheaper cuts like chuck and blade which work just fine.


After being pleasantly surprised with the visit to K-Peppers (Korean fusion restaurant) in Middleton, I had to try and copy their delicious, spicy version of bulgogi (thinly sliced barbecue beef, or translated literally as “fire meat”). For those who don’t know what bulgogi is, it’s thinly sliced rib eye steak (or another prime cut of meat) that is marinated overnight with a main combination of soy sauce, sugar, garlic, ginger, Mirin, and sesame oil. How’s the taste you ask? Basically, it’s the most tender and juicy meat (from the long marination) that can only be described as sweet, savory, and full of rocking flavors. The sweetness is especially appealing to foreigners, who usually end up falling in love with this dish and other Korean BBQ variations (yah!). At most restaurants, you’ll usually find this grilled right in front of you on an iron cast griddle right smack in the middle of the table; however, it’s more than acceptable to cook it on the stove top. And like most Korean BBQ dishes, it is served with a variety of lettuce (red, green, and perilla leaves are my favorite), which is then wrapped with the cooked meat, ssamgjang (dipping sauce) and other namul banchan (vegetable side dishes). Oh, and I almost forgot to include how it turned out (sorry, I digress a lot). The family loved it with Sis giving a big thumbs up. As for me, nothing I cook really tastes that awesome (the downfalls of cooking) but I must say that it did closely mimic the spicy version at K-Peppers! ^^

Other Names:

bulgogi, korean bbq, beef




Wednesday, March 5, 2014 - 8:10pm


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