Jang Jorim (Korean beef)
I love the concept of Korean side dishes. If you walk into a Korean restaurant and order a big two pound flank steak (to share of course), you will get what you ordered but also a plethora of smaller dishes. These dishes will range from salty, wilted spinach to elbow pasta salad. In most Korean homes, dinner will consist of rice and at least five or six other dishes. As someone who likes to try new foods, I am in love with this concept.
Jang jorim is one such side dish. Many Korean beef recipes are some variant of soy sauce marinated beef, and jang jorim is no exception. Unlike bulgogi or galbi (Korean BBQ) however, jang jorim is incredibly salty, in a good way. Also, jang jorim is one of the only meat dishes that I prefer cold rather than hot.
So anyways, what does jang jorim taste like? Well, as you may have guessed, jang jorim tastes like soy sauce. However, there are hints of added spice and wisps of garlic flavor in jang jorim. My dad made the jang jorim dish featured in the photos, and the one he made had traces of ginger flavor also. The complex blend of spiciness, saltiness, and bitterness combine to create an irresistible savory dish.
Jang jorim is also healthy from a weight-loss perspective. Although the beef itself can vary from high to low marbling (streaks of fat in meat), jang jorim generally has low fat and high amounts of protein. The caveat is that jang jorim is loaded with sodium. Of course, jang jorim is a side dish so hopefully, all that sodium is mitigated by other low-sodium foods such as rice.
- 1 lb beef such as top round roast
- 3+ eggs
- 10+ white button mushrooms (you can use alternatives)
- 0.5 cup of soy sauce
- 4 or more garlic cloves
- 1 white onion
- 3+ stalks green onion
- 10+ more serrano peppers
- 4 cups water
As evident, most of the ingredients are variable. You can add more or less garlic, peppers, eggs, mushrooms, soy sauce, etc to suit your tastes. I recommend adding spinach or any other vegetable that tastes good wilted.
- Cut beef into 1-2 inch cubes and soak in cold water for 15-20 minutes. The soaking will allow blood to exit the meat.
- Boil eggs and peel their shells.
- Slice mushrooms.
- Boil beef in 4 cups of water until its excess rises to the top. Discard excess.
- Add soy sauce to beef broth, and add more water as needed but remember that the mixture should be very salty.
- Throw the remaining ingredients into the broth and let simmer for 2+ hours.