Published : 2013-12-13 19:30
Updated : 2013-12-20 19:33
|Seolleongtang (beef bone soup) (Korean Bapsang)|
Seolleongtang is a milky beef bone soup that’s made by boiling beef leg bones for several hours until the broth becomes rich and creamy white. Yes, it takes time, but most of it is stove time. You can do other things around the house while this is boiling away in the kitchen. The results are totally rewarding! A couple of kilograms of beef bones make lots of rich and nourishing soup. Legend has it that this soup was created because King Seongjong of the Joseon Dynasty wanted to feed a large number of people after an ancestral worship ritual involving a sacrificial cow. The King had the right idea!
In making a Western-style beef stock or Vietnamese pho broth, the cooks aim for a clear, brown broth by simmering beef bones for many hours. In contrast, the goal in making seolleongtang is to achieve a milky white broth. What’s done differently? It’s the heat level! For a clear broth, the bones are gently simmered over low heat. Simmering, by definition, is cooking at a temperature below the boiling point with bubbles gently rising to the top. For a milky broth, you need to boil moderately, not simmer, throughout the cooking time.
● 1.5 to 2 kilograms beef leg bones (including marrow and knuckles), cut up
● 600 to 800 grams of beef brisket (yangjimeori) or shank meat (satae)
● Cooked rice
● Cooked somyeon (or glass) noodles
● Thinly sliced meat (boiled in the broth)
● Lots of chopped scallions
● Salt and pepper
Soak the bones in cold water for about 2 hours (or longer if you have time) to draw out as much blood as possible. Rinse well, and drain.
Soak the meat in another bowl for about 2 hours to draw out as much blood as possible. Drain. Keep it in the fridge until ready to use.
Add the bones to a large stockpot with enough cold water to submerge them. Bring it to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium, and boil for 5 minutes.
Drain. Rinse the bones, and clean out the pot to remove any brown bits. Return the bones to the pot.
Fill up the pot with cold water, leaving a little room for boiling. Bring it to a boil over high heat, and reduce the heat to medium. Cover, and boil until the broth becomes rich and milky, for about 3-4 hours (or longer if you have time). Adjust the heat a little, if necessary, to maintain a moderate boil. Add more water once or twice while boiling so that the bones are under the water level.
Add the soaked meat and more water if needed. Boil until the meat is tender, for 1.5-2 hours. Remove the meat. Once cooled, thinly slice the meat to add to the soup when serving.
Pour the broth through a colander into another pot or a large bowl to cool. You can use a fat separator to remove the fat, or keep it in the fridge (or out on the deck or balcony in the winter) until the fat solidifies and then spoon off the fat.
Optional step (highly recommended): Fill up the pot with the used bones and fresh water again. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat to medium. Cover, and boil until the broth becomes rich and milky, for 3-5 hours. Reduce the heat a little, as necessary, to maintain a moderate boil. Add more water if the liquid reduces too quickly while boiling. Pour the milky broth through a colander into the pot or large bowl that contains the first batch. You can repeat this one more time, if desired. Just mix them all at the end to even it out.
To serve, place some rice and, if desired, some noodles in a serving bowl, add the meat pieces and then ladle the hot broth on top. Typically, chopped scallions, salt and pepper are served separately so each person can season to taste. Serve piping hot with kimchi.
See more recipes at www.koreanbapsang.com.
By Ro Hyo-sun