Galbi (Korean Grilled Beef Short Ribs)

Score.  I found a great deal on short ribs at H-Mart, and excitedly scooped up a pack.  Actually, I scooped up TWO packs, but a little voice in my head told me not to be greedy, so I summoned all the willpower I had and put one back.

It was my first time getting my hands on cross-cut short ribs, so I was super excited.  I had been wanting to do this for two whole years now, and finally had everything:  the recipe (from a real Korean person!), the ingredients, and the all-important properly cut short ribs.  It didn’t matter that I didn’t have a grill…..I had our trusty cast iron pan + broiler <3 

As nicely as the cast iron pan + broiler worked, I would LOVE grilling this for real some day, for that awesome barbecued flavor.

Galbi (Grilled Beef Short Ribs)
Recipe from Angela Pau

1.  4 lbs. cross-cut beef short ribs
2.  1 large bottle of cold soda (I like to use seltzer because while it’s still acidic, it doesn’t contain extra sugar and other strange ingredients.)
3.  Marinade:

  • 1 small Asian pear, grated (The original recipe calls for a Korean pear;  If it’s soft enough, I just mash it with a fork.)
  • 1/2 small onion, grated
  • 1 tsp grated ginger (Not a huge fan of ginger, so I may cut back next time)
  • 2 Tbsp garlic, finely chopped
  • Green Scallion (I didn’t have this, so I left it out)
  • 4 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 Tbsp honey
  • 2 Tbps toasted sesame seeds
  • 2 Tbsp toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 cup Soy Sauce (not low sodium)
Prepare the meat
1.  Rinse the short ribs to get rid of lingering bone dust.
2.  Combine the short ribs and seltzer in a large bowl.  Sit for a few hours.  This does two things:  1) The acid from the carbonation helps tenderize the meat;  and 2) the cold soda helps drain the blood from the meat.
When you add the soda, all this stuff – fat and other things? – float up with the bubbles.  I found it kind of fascinating…
3.  Discard the soda, and do a quick rinse of the meat.  Set aside.

Prepare the marinade
In a bowl, combine the marinade ingredients and mix thoroughly.

Combine the meat + marinade
Place the meat and the marinade in a large ziploc bag, flipping several times to ensure the meat is fully coated.  Marinate over night.

Barbecue the meat on a grill, or broil in an oven.  If broiling like I did:
1.  Place meat in a cast iron pan.
2.  Place pan on a rack positioned near the broiler at the top of the oven.
3.  Broil for several minutes until meat is browned/sizzling.  I like it barely charred on the outside, and still a little pink inside (I would have liked positioning the oven rack one level higher, to get slightly more charring, and caramelization of the fruit/sugar without cooking the inside more, but my mom was convinced I would set the house on fire).

Oof, look at that lustrous layer of fat.


3 responses to “Galbi (Korean Grilled Beef Short Ribs)

  1. Looks wonderful! I recently found flanken cut beef ribs the other week for the first time. Wanted to do a recipe similar to yours, but couldn’t get Asian pears, so just sorta winged it. Grilled up in no time and everybody loved it. I’ll have to keep my eyes open for those pears and try your version. Thanks for sharing it.

    • Thanks, Griffinsgrub! Awesome! What did you end up doing? I feel like much of Asian cuisine is like that – winging it, no measurements and even switching up ingredients as one sees fit. I’ve actually heard of people using kiwi in place of the asian pear. Since the role of the fruit is to not only sweeten the marinade, but also to tenderize the meat, perhaps using any type of acid-containing fruit would work. If you try it out, let me know how it goes!

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