Yes, I know I have not one, but two of these already. I did notice that it was four years between the first and second. And heck, guess what? It's been another four years already. So I guess it's just about the time again......
Actually, it was an email from frequent commenter (and hopefully reader) "Soo" that sent me down this road. It was a simple question about Kalbi, which made me realize that I hadn't made it in a while. I'd been wanting to try a different version and this seemed like a great time to do it.
So I bought some meat........
And the other ingredient, a new one......Sierra Mist. I'd been hearing about folks using lemon lime soda in their kalbi for quite a while. It's supposed to help tenderize the meat....though like most of everything else, I'm not sure how true that is. I believe it was Thomas Keller who debunked the acid as tenderizer theory. Yes, who am I to say this wouldn't work or taste good?
Still, the addition of other acids (i.e. mirin) and the standard Asian Pear which has the enzyme papain which does indeed break down protein. I know something about that since I had two chymopapain injections when I was younger. Though too much papain can make your meat really mushy.
Anyway, I started with a baseline, and just built on it by taste of the marinade. One big change in how I make this. I now grate everything by hand. A couple of years back I decided not to use the food processor/blender for this anymore. It was whipping in too much air, adding too much heat, making the marinade taste a bit different for me.
Enough of that; here's Kalbi Three:
- Combine all ingredients.
- Marinade ribs overnight
The flavor was more light and fruity than sweet. Even though I used Haeundae cut, Angus beef ribs, these were on the chewy side. Still, the Missus enjoyed the flavor. I need to do a taste-off of my various recipes with the addition of one that does a milk marinade for tenderizing first. I've heard a couple of "my grandma's kalbi recipe" stories of milk being used to tenderize the beef. Anyone know of this?