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[Holly’s Korean Kitchen] Korean beef bulgogi hot pot

Korean beef bulgogi hot pot (Holly Ford)
Korean beef bulgogi hot pot (Holly Ford)
As I review fond memories of wintertime in Korea when I was growing up, I think of my mother preparing this delicious, savory bulgogi hot pot for dinner.

A large shallow pot is adorned with a beautiful arrangement of Korean beef bulgogi meat, along with a variety of leafy vegetables, mushrooms and Korean glass noodles, known as dangmyeon. Then a slightly sweet and savory broth is poured over it all.

My mother placed the pot on a portable burner in the middle of the table. The entire family of seven sat around the table and watched with anticipation as the hot pot steamed up and then began to boil.

Bulgogi jeongol cooks up fast. Within a short few minutes, this comforting and delicious Korean beef stew is ready. We each rushed to pick out, with a ladle, our favorite ingredient from the hot pot -- for me, it was the mushroom -- and dip it in the sauce on our individual plate.

What is jeongol?

Jeongol is a Korean word for hot pot. It’s one of the sophisticated Korean stew dishes cooked right at the table. There are a variety of ingredient options for jeongol, such as marinated beef (bulgogi), fresh seafood, dumplings, mushroom, tofu and fish cakes. Whichever option you choose, always add leafy vegetables to balance the dish.

How to make bulgogi jeongol at home

For savory broth

• 7 large dried anchovies

• 1 large dried sea kelp (dashima)

• 4 dried jujube (daechu)

• 2 tsp whole peppercorn optional

• 6 cup water

• 2 tbsp Korean soup soy sauce (gukganjang)

• 2 tbsp sweet rice wine (mirim)

• salt to taste

For bulgogi hot pot

• 450 grams Korean beef bulgogi marinated

• 85 grams Korean glass noodles (dangmyeon)

• 1/4 napa cabbage sliced

• 225 grams baby bok choy halved

• 115 grams each mushroom (shiitake, oyster and enoki mushroom) or use other favorite mushrooms

• 1/2 medium onion sliced

• 4 green onion sliced

For dipping sauce

• 6 tbsp soy sauce

• 4 tbsp rice vinegar

• 1 1/2 tbsp sugar

• 2 tsp Korean mustard (yeongeoja) or dijon mustard

• 1/2 white onion thinly sliced, optional

Instructions

For the savory broth

1. For the savory broth, simmer together dried anchovies, dried sea kelp and dried jujube over low heat for 10 minutes. Remove the sea kelp halfway through your simmering time. Discard the anchovies and jujube, and reserve the stock.

2. Season the broth with Korean soup soy sauce and sweet rice wine. Taste and add salt as needed. Be careful not to overly season and set it aside.

For the hot pot

1. Soak Korean glass noodles in warm water for 15 minutes. Drain and set aside.

2. Prepare other hot pot ingredients in large bite-size pieces and set aside.

3. In a braiser pan or shallow pot of about 3-4 quarts, assemble the hot pot ingredients, placing them in a pleasing way for presentation, and then pour the savory broth over them. The broth should not reach all the way to the top. You can add more stock as you cook.

4. Place the pot over the portable burner in the middle of the table and let it boil over medium-high heat. When the broth is starting to boil, spread the beef around so it cooks evenly.

5. When the meat is cooked and the vegetables, mushrooms and noodles are tender, dish the items onto your serving dish and serve with dipping sauce and crisped raw onion (optional).

For the dipping sauce

1. If you are using the onion, I recommend soaking the thin onion slices in cold water for a few minutes to crisp them up.

2. Combine soy sauce, vinegar, sugar and Korean mustard in a small jar and shake vigorously to emulsify the sauce.

By Holly Ford (https://www.beyondkimchee.com)

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Hye-gyoung Ford (aka Holly) is a well-known Korean food blogger and the author of “Korean Cooking Favorites.” Born and raised in Korea, she has lived in many countries. She shares her recipes and food memories in her blog, Beyond Kimchee. - Ed.

By Korea Herald (khnews@heraldcorp.com)
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