"Fire meat" is what Bulgogi literally translated means, a word from the dialect of Korean called Pony'ng. When one speaks of Bulgogi, it does imply to be prepared with beef, unless specified to be any other kind.
Small pieces of beef, chicken or dwaeji~pork, are often used to perpare bulgogi which is served up with sticky rice or rice noodles and enjoyed with chop sticks. Often a cucumber salad is offered with it.
Originally created for royalty this is referred to as a rich mans food. With the culinary world closer and familiar than ever before, bulgogi is now available all over the world in varied versions. Here is one you can prepare in your own kitchen.
|Dak Bulgogi on sticky rice garnished with sesame seeds and green onions|
1 large peeled pear
4 cloves of fresh garlic
3 tbsp fresh, peeled ginger root
1/2 cup soya sauce
4 tsp crush chilli flakes
4 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp corn syrup, maple syrup or honey
4 tbsp rice wine vinegar
6 tbsp sesame oil
Marinate in the above marinade for a minimium of 2 hours or up to overnight
2.2 lb 1 kg chicken thighs in small pieces
You will also need
oil to pan fry
For the garnish
4 green onions, sliced
2 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
In a hot skillet add a tbsp of oil, heat for a minute and add the pieces of chicken to sizzle and cook. Turn it once or twice. Keep adding the marinade as needed. Lower the heat and allow it to cook through. There should be little sticky gravy left at the end of the cooking.
Pour all of it over the bowl of rice or rice noodles.
Garnish it with green onions and the toasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.
Serve this with a bowl of plain or sticky boiled, jasmine or basmati or sushi white rice.
A bowl of rice noodles is another alternate.
Also serve thinly sliced cucumber, salt, tossed in rice wine vinegar with red radish or seaweed nori pieces.
If using beef, slice the flank steak against the grain in bite size pieces. If using short ribs keep them small enough to pick with chop sticks. You can consider using duck as well. Generally duck breast is a better choice to cook with.
There is no salt in this recipe because of the soya, (especially if one is not using the light variety) and sesame oil but you may adjust it according to your palate. Generally chicken needs some, while beef can do without.
The corn syrup, maple syrup or honey makes the gravy sticky. If you wish to reduce the sweetness cut down the sugar not the syrup.
For more recipes from Niloufer's Kitchen click to purchase my new cookbook on Parsi Cuisine.
Photo courtesy Shamineh M.