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Braised Beef Brisket, in Korean style

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April 19, 2011

Braised Beef Brisket, in Korean style


If you go to upscale Korean restaurants you will often see this braised Korean beef as a side dish along with the other 500(?) on your table.
It is meant to be served as side dish, usually chilled or at room temperature, but can be served as simple meal with some rice.

So tender and slightly sweet, this is the one side dish that will be gone as soon as it hits the table.
You can ask for more, but just letting you know, they will give you THE look that you don't wan to see.
After all, it is beef no matter how cheap the cut is...

The dish is called "Jangjorim (장조림)", typically made with beef brisket or beef eye round.
Some makes with pork but I like beef better. It is glorious "banchan (side dish)" on any table.

You can make a batch and store in a air tight container in the fridge for as long as a month. 
When you are in a rush or too tired to cook, you will be glad that you have this cow soaked in delicious sauce waiting for you.

And, of course, it's not that difficult to make at all. A little patience is all you need...


Let's check out the ingredients.
Beef, leek, ginger, peppercorn, bay leaves, Korean soy sauce, soy sauce, rice wine, and sugar.

I used beef eye round this time. Brisket is another wonderful choice.

Boil the beef in plain water for 5 minutes. Drain and discard the water. Why?
This step will get rid of the yucky scums and some fat from the meat.

Now, let's start with clean pot again.
Pour about 5 cup of clean (I mean real clean...) water and add the flavor crews.

Boil and simmer for 30 minutes, covered.

Strain and reserve 2 1/2 cup of stock.  Discard the veggies.
But keep the main actor, the beef!

Cool down the beef a little and shred them into bite sizes.

Now, put the beef back into the pot and add the reserved stock.

Mix soy sauces, sugar, and rice wine.

Add into the pot to mingle with beef.

Bring to boil and simmer over medium-low heat, UNCOVERED, for 20 minutes or so until...

the liquid reduces this much.

Throw some chili peppers if you like the gentle kick in the flavor.
The overall flavor (even with chilies) is mild enough that even my kiddos can handle.

Continue to reduce the liquid, COVERED this time, about 5-10 minutes.
Done! Beautiful!

Cool them down first and store in the airtight container. You can keep them in the fridge as long as you want, but I promise you that it won't last that long.
It only lasted 2 days in my house until every single drop of juice went into our stomach.

Note: You will see some particles of fat floating on top after chilled. If that bothers you, simply microwave for 10 seconds.

Tenderness? -- checked!
Flavor balance? -- checked!
Taste? -- Oh, Lord!

Braised Beef Brisket
(소고기 장조림, sogogi jangjorim)

1 1/4 lb beef brisket or beef eye round
1 leek or 1 medium onion, roughly diced
2 bay leaves
2 tsp black peppercorn
4 garlic cloves
3 slices ginger (about 1/4" thick)
3-4 chilies, cut in half
5 cups water
6 Tbsp soy sauce
2 Tbsp Korean soy sauce
3 Tbsp sugar
2 Tbsp rice wine

In a medium sauce pan boil beef in water for 5 minute. You will see lots of scums floating in the pan while boiling. Take the meat out and discard the water.
Place the partially cooked meat in the clean sauce pan again and add 5 cups water, leek, bay leaves, peppercorn, garlic, and ginger. Let it boil and simmer, covered, for 30 minutes.
Remove the meat from the pan and set aside to cool down a bit. Strain the stock through a mesh and reserve 2 1/2 cup.
Shred the beef into bite size. Place them back in the pan and pour the reserved 2 1/2 cup stock. Add the soy sauces, sugar and rice wine, mix well. Bring the pan to boil over medium heat and reduce the heat to medium low. Continue to cook down the liquid, uncovered, for about 20 minutes. When the liquid is reduced about to the level of beef, add chilies and cover the lid. Continue to simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and cool completely.
Serve at room temperature or chilled. 
The beef should be kept in an airtight container and can be stored in the fridge up to a month.

Note: Once chilled you will see a little bit of fat particles floating on top. If that bothers you, microwave for 10 seconds and you will get a clear juice again.

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At April 19, 2011 at 10:13 PM , Anonymous Jennifer said...

Thanks for the recipe. What ratio do you recommend for Korean soy sauce and (regular?) soy sauce? Also, would Chinese dark soy sauce substitute well for Korean soy sauce? Is Kikkoman soy sauce acceptable for the regular soy sauce? Thanks.

At April 19, 2011 at 11:37 PM , Anonymous julie {chef julie yoon} said...

jangjorim reminds me of my mom. She'd always make it and bring a batch for me when I was in college. Your recipe for it looks so delicious and clean. Yeah I always hated that it would congeal with fat particles when chilled...gross. But nothing beats jangjorim, rice and kimchi!


At April 20, 2011 at 6:47 AM , Anonymous beyondkimchee said...

I am glad that you mentioned about the ratio. I totally forgot to add the
amount of Korean soy sauce (gook-ganjang) in the recipe. I fixed it and it
should be on the post.

I would not recommend Chinese soy sauce in any Korean recipe since it has
very different flavor. Kikkoman is, however, great to substitute for regular
soy sauce (not the Korean style, gook-ganjang soy sauce).
I know it sounds confusing but Koreans use two types of soy sauce. One is
just regular typical soy sauce that most people use, like Kikkoman.
And the other is called goo-ganjang, the Korean style soy sauce. It is
thinner and saltier. You can sub with 1/2 amount of fish sauce if you can't
find it.

Hope this helps.

At April 20, 2011 at 6:48 AM , Anonymous beyondkimchee said...

Yup, that's how I usually enjoy. So good together.

At April 23, 2011 at 9:22 AM , Anonymous Cooking gallery said...

This looks great! I have never had this side dish, usually I get kimchi or spicy potatos as side dishes when I visit a Korean restaurant. I am sure I will give this recipe a try sooner or later, it looks too good to miss! Thanks for sharing this wonderful recipe :).

At May 3, 2011 at 6:59 AM , Anonymous Katherin said...

Beef and spices. This is like the perfect recipe! It is delicious! Thanks for sharing!

At May 3, 2011 at 6:41 PM , Anonymous beyondkimchee said...

You're welcome. I am glad you like it.

At January 11, 2012 at 5:38 PM , Anonymous Christine Lee Zilka said...

I LOVE your site, and every single recipe here. I am so grateful--there are foods that I have yet to find in cookbooks, that I grew up with. Thank you for sharing! I've been clicking all over your site, and bookmarking so many recipes.

At January 12, 2012 at 4:53 AM , Anonymous beyondkimchee said...

Thanks Christina. I am happy that you found many recipes you grow up with. Hope you can try some soon.


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