A few months ago I went to my friend Christine’s house for an afternoon of Korean cooking. She is Vietnamese and Chinese and her hubby is Korean so she definitely knows her food. I know basically zilch about authentic Asian cooking but I do know that Asian food and Mexican food are a tie for first place in my world. So I really appreciated a lesson from Christine! We made gimbap and yubuchobap. I must say the results were really impressive.
After our day of cooking/eating, I couldn’t get bulgogi out of my mind. Christine and I put the bulgogi in our gimbap (we also made some with crab) and it was seriously amazing. Also, the fact that I just said ‘put the bulgogi in our gimbap’ is cracking me up. Who says that?! Anyways, after sneaking a few pieces of the meat as we were assembling our gimbap I quickly realized that it would be drool worthy just on it’s own.
Fast forward a few months and LLP finally decided to make bulgogi at home…in the form of lettuce wraps! After marinating and cooking the bulgogi all we had to do was serve it in some crisp green leaf lettuce. That’s all there is to it. Nothing fancy or time consuming, But so good. So so good.
Bulgogi Lettuce Wraps
- 1/3 cup soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sugar
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tbsp sesame seeds
- 1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
- 1 pinch black pepper
- 1 tsp fresh ginger, finely grated
- 1/4 cup Asian pear, finely grated
- 1 1/2 lb rib eye, thinly sliced
- 1/2 small white onion, halved and thinly sliced
- 2 green onions, finely sliced
- green leaf lettuce, for serving
- Place the rib eye in the freezer for 30-45 minutes before cutting. It is easier to cut the meat in thin slices if it is semi frozen.
- In a large bowl, combine soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, garlic, ginger, pear, sesame seeds, red pepper flakes and black pepper. Stir well until the sugar has dissolved.
- Add the beef, onions and green onions to the bowl and toss together so that everything is evenly coated in the marinade. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, preferably several hours.
- Heat a cast iron skillet to high heat and add the onions to the pan first. After they have softened for a minute or so, add the beef and cook until you reach your preferred level of doneness. It will cook fast because they are cut into small slices.
- Serve in green leaf lettuce wraps and garnish with extra sesame seeds and green onions, if desired.