Monday, August 22, 2011

Daeji Bulgogi (Korean-Style Grilled Pork)

Daeji Bulgogi (Korean-Style Grilled Pork)
As shared from the kitchen of Once Upon a Plate by Mari

Marinated and cooked on the grill, these thin slices of pork tenderloin are irresistible.  You can serve them with steamed rice, or wrapped in a lettuce leaf.  Traditionally kimchi and pickled vegetables are served along with this dish.
1 pound pork tenderloin, (remove any silver skin)
1/4 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons mirin or sherry (not cooking sherry)
2 tablespoons gochujang*
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil (Asian style)
1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger root
1 teaspoon dry red pepper flakes (more or less depending upon the degree of heat you enjoy)  I use about 1/4 teaspoon.
2 to 3 green onions, both green and white parts, minced
1 small onion, thinly sliced
For serving: 
Leaf lettuce of your choice
Pickled vegetables**
•For easier slicing, put the raw pork tenderloin in the freezer for 45 minutes to an hour. In the meantime in a small bowl, mix the soy sauce, brown sugar, minced garlic, mirin (or sherry), gochujang, sesame oil,  grated ginger root, pepper flakes and green onion. Stir to combine.
•Slice the pork into thin slices (approximately 1/8-inch).  The most effective way of marinating is in a plastic zipper-style freezer bag. Place the sliced pork and onions in the plastic bag, then pour the marinade in.  Massage bag gently to distribute the marinade on all of the meat. Place the bag in the refrigerator for at least 3 hours, or up to 24 hours.
•When ready to grill the meat, take the bag from the refrigerator and set aside while you light a charcoal grill.  When the charcoal is ready, clean and oil the grill grate. Place the slices of meat on the grill in a single layer, grill quickly (about a minute per side.) Serve immediately; tuck a few slices of meat in the lettuce leaf along with some kimchi and pickled vegetables, if desired.
* One of the key ingredients in the marinade is gochujan (fermented hot red pepper paste), which provides a majority of the flavor. Available in well stocked Asian grocery stores, it's worth searching out if you want to make bulgogi.  If, like me, you cannot find it locally you can order it through as I did:
It comes in different levels of 'heat' ~ I purchased level 3 (medium hot), and found it to be very palatable). I don't like to feel as if my mouth is on fire, and this one tastes just right to me. (If you would like the dish to have more spice, increase the amount of red pepper flakes.)
** Easy recipe for Quick Asian-style pickled vegetables can be found HERE at the Whole Foods recipe site.

I hope you enjoy!
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