Our first ever taste of bulgogi jeongol was in a drunken haze in the middle of a frigid South Korean winter. The clear hotpot, akin to Japanese shabu shabu, was comforting and hearty, but clean and exquisite. I'd been hankering to recreate it since then, but I didn't know what it was called, and restaurants in Singapore don't serve it either.
Until a serendipitous work thing put me in touch with our Korean counterparts who very kindly enlightened me on the name of the dish, and badabing badaboom, I've got another go-to soup to make whenever the day has been interminably dreary.
Although this dish is traditionally a hotpot that's cooked tabletop, I find this making it on the stovetop a lot less fussy. I suppose that would make this more a "bulgogi-tang" than a "bulgogi jeongol" huh.
Ingredients (feeds 4):
400gms of the best quality sukiyaki beef you can get (we love Meidi-Ya for its selection of beautifully marbled wagyu), marinated in bulgogi for at least 1 hour
cabbage, roughly chopped into large pieces
2 large carrots, shredded
1 large yellow onion, sliced thinly
10 shitake mushrooms, sliced
1 cup bunashimeiji
1 cup oyster mushrooms
1 head maitake mushrooms
a handful enoki
a handful dangmyeon (Korean potato starch noodles)
5 pieces kelp
10 cups water
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp canola oil
1) Make stock, boiling the kelp in water for about 45 mins.
2) Separately, fry onions in sesame-canola oil on medium-high heat until fragrant and translucent, about a minute.
3) Add carrots, fry until just softened, about 40 seconds.
4) Add cabbage, fry until just wilted, about 2 minutes.
5) Add mushrooms, toss through, about 2 minutes.
6) Remove the kelp from the stock, and transfer the sauteed vegetables into the stock. Bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer for 45 minutes.
7) 5 minutes before serving, put in the dangmyeon and beef, with 2 tbsp of the bulgogi marinade and stir-through.
8) Garnish with sesame seeds.