COUNTRY:                           SOUTH KOREA

DISH:                                     BULGOGI

CONTRIBUTED BY:            Embassy, Mission in Pretoria  


Bulgogi, which literally means “fire meat”, refers to a traditional Korean dish made by grilling beef or (rarely) pork after shredding or slicing it and marinating it in sweet soy sauce mixed with a great variety of condiments. It is one of the rare meat dishes to have developed in Korea, where people were generally more accustomed to eating vegetable dishes, and has won many enthusiasts outside the country. Bulgogi has recently been adopted by fast-food restaurants in Korea, resulting in the emergence of bulgogi hamburgers and pizzas.

Ingredients (serves 4)

600g stripped or shredded beef (sirloin)


100g pear

30g onion

8g kiwi

3 tablespoons (48g) minced garlic

4 tablespoons (56g) minced green onion

3 tablespoons (36g) sugar

30 ml cheongju (refined rice wine)

2 tablespoons (36g) soy sauce

½ teaspoon (1g) crushed pepper

2 tablespoons (38g) rice grain syrup



Put pear, kiwi and onion into a blender to grind and then mix with the rest of ingredients for the marinade.

Get rid of excess blood from the beef, seal into a container and infuse with a smoke gun to add a smokey flavor until smoke disappears.

Marinate the smoked beef, let it sit for about 1 hour.

Pan-fry the marinated smoked beef.

Serve with warm buns, bread or steamed rice.