While it is easy to find Bulgogi marinades in supermarkets these days, I learned how to make my own Bulgogi marinade last year. The bottled marinades may be flavourful but in reality, homemade Bulgogi doesn't need to have a strong BBQ-y taste. Instead, it should have a harmony of balanced flavours that doesn't overwhelm.
For the recipe below, you will need half a kilo of Beef. Tenderloin, Sirloin or Rib-Eye would be good options.
What You Need for the Marinade Sauce:
4 tbsp of soy sauce
4 tbsp of water
3 tbsp of sugar
2 tbsp of honey
2 tbsp of sesame oil
1 tsp pepper
4 cloves of garlic, minced
What You Need to Finish Off the Dish:
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
2 stalks of green onion/shallots, chopped (alternative: white onions)
Salt and Pepper, to add flavour
What To Do:
- Slice half a kilo of beef into thin strips.
- In a bowl, throw in the ingredients of your Marinade Sauce, then mix it with the sliced beef until well coated.
- Marinate for at least 2 hours and keep it in the refrigerator. I leave it overnight for maximum flavour.
You can cook your Bulgogi-marinated beef in two ways:
(1) Grill the beef. After grilling, transfer to a plate or cast iron plate. Sprinkle it with shallots and sesame seeds. (see my previous post: Weekend BBQ Party with Friends)
(2) Stir-fry the beef in sesame oil, garlic and onion. Saute for a while then throw in mushrooms, carrots and green onions. Add salt and pepper if needed. Once the beef and vegetables are cooked, transfer to a plate or bowl and sprinkle with sesame seeds (see photo below).
Note: Measurements of ingredients are based on estimates so these only serve as guides. If you want stronger flavours, you may choose to add more. The key is to taste as you go along.