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The story of bulgogi.

AUTHOR

Mackenzie Goodman

 

DATE

November 2019

AUTHOR:

Mackenzie Goodman

DATE:

November 2019

A Korean icon.

You may not know it by looking at it, but bulgogi, literally meaning “fire meat” (불고기), is a dish containing the history of Korea.¬

Bulgogi’s origins can be traced back to the Goguryeo era (37 B.C. to 668 A.D.), where it was known as maekjeok, a popular kebab-like dish. Through the centuries, maekjeok underwent several transformations before becoming the bulgogi we know today; first as seoryamyeok, which is marinated beef soaked in cold water, and then as neobiani, a dish made with marinated, thin-sliced, char-broiled beef.

Much like bulgogi, Korea itself underwent many transformations. During prosperous years (around the early 1900s), beef and bulgogi exploded in popularity. However, once Korea came under Japanese rule, prices for beef became too high for the average Korean citizen. Those who had regular access to beef and pork were considered a privileged class. It wasn’t until the 1960s, after war had subsided and Korea gained its independence, that meat became a more accessible ingredient.

Today, bulgogi is so loved that even McDonald's jumped on the bulgogi bandwagon. And while their bulgogi burger is essentially a regular hamburger served with a bulgogi-style sauce, it’s a good indicator of just how popular this dish has become.

The secret to making the perfect tender, savory-sweet meat is a special bulgogi marinade made with Asian pear, scallions, garlic, and soy. But everyone seems to have their own secret recipe, and their own twist: Bulgogi sushi. Bulgogi bibimbap. Pork bulgogi. Bulgogi tacos. Bulgogi risotto. Bulgogi pizza. The variations on this once-simple fire + meat creation have exploded, and for good reason: there’s nothing quite like it.

Don’t just take our word for it, though. Come taste for yourself.

New to the menu, and straight from the kitchens of Korea:

 
Korean Bulgogi Steak 

Korean Bulgogi Steak