Korean Bulgogi Beef

This week has been manic – I’ve not managed to make it home once before 11 and by Friday I was desperate to get in front of the stove so I could shake it all off and decompress.

Luckily my fridge was pretty stocked (having not been opened all week!!) so I knew I had everything I needed for the perfect comfort food fix – which in my case is always something Asian. And in this instance it was Korean.

Once upon a time I knew nothing about Korean food. It wasn’t something my parents had ever eaten and we didn’t have any Korean friends. So naturally when I found myself living with a Korean the first thing I did was bombard her with questions and sample every strange new dish or snack that arrived in the kitchen. It was great – we’d have breakfast Korean style, lunch Korean style, dinner Korean style and even drunk post-club carb-loading Korean style. That last one is where my love of Nongshim shin ramen came from. Can’t beat a steaming bowl of spicy instant noodles after one too many beers!

Now I have too many favorites Korean foods to list but amongst the top 5 is definitely bulgogi. I like to keep mine traditional with beef. But it also works great with chicken or tofu.

Thin slices of steak are marinated in a sweet mix of soy sauce, sugar, garlic, pears and sesame oil for a tender, melt-in-your-mouth beef dish. You can eat this as is or over a steaming bowl of rice, or wrapped in lettuce leaves. DELISH!

Below is my recipe for making the sauce from scratch but I’m not going to pretend I always use it. Lets be honest sometimes you just just want to grab and stuff. Luckily you can get some pretty decent bulgogi sauces at the supermarket (and I’m talking highstreet not asian) so have a look in your world foods aisle and don’t sweat if you need to cheat a little. We’ve all been there…



Korean Bulgogi

  • Servings: 2/4 (depends whether you will have other side dishes
  • Print


  • 450g Sirlion or Bavette Steak (aka as Flank Steak)
  • 3 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tbs sugar
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 2 tbs rice wine
  • 1 tbs sesame oil
  • 3 cloves of minced garlic
  • 1 tsp ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp sesame seeds
  • 2 chopped spring onion
  • 2 tbs pear/apple puree
  • 1 green pepper
  • 1/2 white onion
  • Gochujang, sesame seed and sliced spring onion to serve


Place the beef in a shallow dish. Combine sauce ingredients in a small bowl. Pour over beef. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 mins or overnight if you are more prepared then I ever am.

Slice pepper and onion thinly across the diagonal.

Quickly fry beef and vegetables on hot griddle pan (or normal frying pan if you don’t have one) until slightly charred and cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes per side.

Serve up with a nice steaming bowl of rice, a dollop of gochujang for some smokey spice, sesame seeds and spring onion.

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