Quick, Easy, Kind of Korean
It may be grilling season, but sometimes it still seems a little too time-consuming or wasteful to fire up the outdoor grill when you’re cooking for one or two people. For nights when I just want dinner to happen quickly, but I also want it to have char marks and smoke, I’m loving our new slab of cast iron. It’s smooth on one side—good for pancakes and eggs—and ribbed for your charring pleasure on the other, as you can see above.
I grabbed this recipe off Slashfood for something reminiscent of bulgogi. Standard Asian marinade—soy sauce, rice vinegar, ginger, garlic, sesame oil, sugar, black pepper, green onion. Hard to go wrong there. I might add some red pepper flakes next time. And then, instead of having a butcher cut the steak into thin strips or freezing and then cutting the steak, I just bought a 1-lb ribeye, marinated and grilled it whole and sliced it after resting.
I turned the burners up as high as they’d go about 10 minutes before cooking and cooked the steak for 5 minutes on each side, accompanied by thick slices of onion that had also been marinated. Then I rested the meat for 5 minutes before slicing it against the grain. We ate the meat and onions together, wrapped in romaine leaves with Sriracha. Totally inauthentic. Totally delicious.
Recipe: Bulgogi-ish Ribeye (adapted from Slashfood)
- a steak or two—something like ribeye or flank steak (you probably want about 8 oz per person, scale up the marinade if cooking for more than 4 people)
- one large white or yellow onion
- optional garnishes: lettuce leaves, hot sauce, steamed rice and pickled things
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 2 Tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 Tablespoon rice wine vinegar
- 1 Tablespoon sugar
- a thumb-sized knob of ginger, peeled and minced
- 4-5 cloves of garlic, minced
- one green onion, minced
- a pinch of black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, cayenne powder, or Sriracha (optional)
1. Whisk together the marinade ingredients and pour the mixture into a zip-top bag or other container large enough to accommodate the meat. Slice the large onion thickly and place the steak and onion slices in the marinade. Toss and turn or shake to cover and let sit for at least 30 minutes or refrigerate up to 8 hours or overnight.
2. Get your grill or broiler hot. Put the steak and onions on and let cook for 5 minutes. Turn both the steak and onion slices once and cook 5 minutes more on the other side. For a typical cut, that will turn out mostly medium rare (or, for uneven thickness, a range between medium and rare). Cook more or less if you like it more or less done. For thicker cuts, cook to 125 F in the middle for rare, 130 F for medium rare, 140 F for medium, 150 F for medium well, and 160 F for well). Or use the finger test.
3. Let the steak rest for 5 minutes, and then slice thinly against the grain.
4. Serve with garnishes.