I have taken my current Korean food obsession to a new level. No longer content with satisfying my cravings whilst eating out, I somehow managed to convince myself to recreate some Korean dishes at home. Bearing in mind I’ve only just discovered this cuisine in the last few years and can barely pronounce some of the ingredients, let alone actually know what they are, this was definitely a step outside the comfort zone. The results? Mixed. And a little bit stinky…
The ‘stinky’ being the jars upon jars of homemade kimchi I now have in the fridge which give off a whiffy reminder of their presence every time the fridge door is opened. This is probably one of the few occasions where your food emitting a stench is not necessarily a bad thing… oh yes, my little babies are fermenting their hearts out but I’m still a little disappointed with my first attempt. Next time, that’s if a certain someone lets me have a next time, there will be a lot more gochugaru (Korean chilli flakes) going into the mix! In the meantime, I am throwing kimchi into all sorts of concoctions… so sing out if you’ve got suggestions!
Now, let’s talk about my more successful Korean food experiment with a little (ok, a lot) of help from Yogiyo Korean Kitchen; a Korean sauce range from husband and wife team Ben and Sue Youn. I first spotted them and their Korean sauces on Dragon’s Den, was pleased to see them strike a deal with Peter Jones, and later even more pleased to see Yogiyo sauces on the shelves at Sainsbury’s and now in my fridge! With very little clue on what to do with my sauces, I turned to the recipes on their site for a few ideas and settled on trying out the beef galbi stir fry!
Beef Galbi Stir Fry (adapted from Yogiyo Korean Kitchen)
- 200g thinly slice beef, ideally sirloin
- 4 tablespoons Yogiyo Galbi sauce
- 2 teaspoons sesame oil
- 2 spring onions, finely chopped
- 1 teaspoon minced ginger
- 1 red pepper, thinly sliced
- 50g shitake mushrooms, sliced
- rice or noodles to serve
Marinade the beef in 2 tablespoons of Galbi sauce for at least 30 – 60 minutes.
Heat the oil in a large fry pan then add the spring onions and ginger and cook on a low heat for 2 minutes until soft.
Turn up the heat then add the beef, capsicum,and shitake mushrooms, and stir fry for a 2 – 3 minutes.
Add the remaining Galbi sauce and stir fry until any liquid has evaporated and the sauce looks slightly caramelised.
Serve with rice or noodles.
I served mine with rice, a drop of the Yogiyo Gochujang dipping sauce, and some added extras because the beef galbi was such a breeze to make I had some time on my hands… just enough to lightly fry off julienned carrots, bok choy, extra shitake mushrooms, beansprouts, and an egg!
I kept all the elements separate and attempted to create my own bibimbap – it almost looks the part doesn’t it?! That lasted the whole minute it took to snap that photo, and then in true bibimbap style, we smushed everything up.
I liked that all the sauces had really bold flavours – the Galbi is quite sweet and fruity whereas both the cooking and dipping Gochujang sauces were richer and saltier. My only complaint would be that the Gochujang aren’t spicy enough; there was absolutely no heat for my tastes and definitely nowhere near the spice levels I’ve experienced in Korean food but that’s nothing a cheeky dash of sriracha can’t fix.
Overall, I think they are handy and versatile sauces to have in your fridge as I’ve found myself reaching for them when I’ve made fried rice or noodles lately as they are a quick and effective way of injecting some flavour into the dishes!
Do you have a Korean food obsession too? Tell me all your favourite dishes…
Thanks to Yogiyo Korean Kitchen for sending me a sample of their products, but as always, all opinions are mine and mine alone!