My husband and I love this dish so much that it was part of our wedding festivities. Our wedding was a dream – took place in the very scenic, unique, picture perfect landscape of the Adirondack’s. We were fortunate to have the best of the best early fall weather on Labor Day weekend. We knew that loved ones would be traveling far to celebrate the long awaited nuptials with us (I think my parents had almost begun to think marriage wasn’t going to happen) and we wanted to make it a weekend full of festivities.
For the first night, we had our rehearsal dinner immediately followed by a welcome reception, both at my parents’ home in Saranac Lake. We wanted the menu to be homey and reflect us, so it was a fusion of my American upbringing with the Palmateer Family’s tradition of grilled sirloin piled high on buttery garlic bread and topped with the trademark Pop’s pickled red onions (recipes will come, I promise – these are super special) and George’s Korean roots with skewered bulkogi and daeji bulkogi grilled to perfection with kimchee on the side. It was perfect.
In Korean, “Daeji” means pork and “bulkogi” literally translates into fire meat. The most traditional way of making this dish is using very thinly sliced pork butt, which looks similar to the thinly shaved ribeye in my bulkogi recipe. It’s a little spicy, a little sweet, a little salty, a little garlicky, and a lot yummy. 🙂 When I can’t find the thinly shaved pork and I don’t feel motivated enough to do it myself, I use boneless pork chops and pound them with a meat mallet until it’s nice and thin. Tastes just as good and is perfect for an outdoor grill (I actually only pan fry the thin stuff because it will cause a bit of a mess on the grill).
The thought of this recipe puts a smile on my face and my belly growl in anticipation. But this marinade is actually incredibly versatile… A friend once referred to it as the “Korean barbecue sauce” and he couldn’t have summed it up more perfectly. This sauce works perfectly on chicken too, so to call it the Korean barbecue sauce is spot on.
If you like spicy food, I guarantee you will enjoy this spicy porky goodness. (as a note, if you make this pork, it is actually really awesome in the Kimchee Fried Rice recipe in place of the pork belly.)
- 6 boneless, center cut pork chops, pounded to a 1/4 inch thickness
- 3 heaping T. of gochujang (Korean hot pepper paste)
- 2 T. soy sauce
- 1 T. sesame oil
- 1/4 C. mirin
- 1 tsp. red pepper flakes (or 1/2 tsp. cayenne)
- 2 T. honey
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 3 scallions, chopped finely (or one small onion)
- 1/2 tsp. fresh ginger, minced finely (or 1/4 tsp powdered ginger)
- 1/4 – 1/2 tsp. black pepper (depending on your preferences)
Pour mixture over pork and marinate for at least one hour or overnight for best results. Grill about 2 min. on each side – do not overcook as it will dry out. For a complete Korean meal, serve with rice, roasted seaweed, kimchee, tofu, and spinach or lettuce for wraps.
- To make this Gluten Free, just use GF soy sauce… As always, everything else is safe!
- Seriously, this marinade is good on anything, especially chicken. Marinate the chicken for the same length of time and it just permeates the meat.