Galbi, a popular Korean BBQ dish, has a savory-sweet marinade that caramelizes in a hot skillet or on the grill. NYC chef Hooni Kim uses garlic, ginger, soy sauce, and Asian pear for an authentic rendition of a Korean classic. (Note: This recipe requires overnight marination.)
Marinade: Peel pear, cut into pieces, and place into food processor (discard the core). Smash garlic cloves; trim root end, remove peel, and add to the food processor. Trim any dry patches off ginger knob; then use a spoon to scrape off the skin. Roughly slice (to about the same size as the garlic) and place in the food processor. Pulse to finely chop, about 20 seconds. Add sugar, mirin, soy sauce, and sake, and pulse several times to finish the marinade. Set aside.
Short ribs: Cut short rib slices into 2-inch pieces, making sure a bone is in each piece. Pour enough marinade into a baking dish to cover the bottom. Spread the sliced short ribs on the marinade; then pour remaining marinade on top to cover. Cover the surface of the ribs with plastic wrap and refrigerate, 12–24 hours.
Remove marinade from short ribs by draining them in a colander; discard marinade. Heat skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil in a thin, even layer. When the skillet is smoking, add short ribs, one piece at a time, in an even layer. (Cook in batches to avoid overcrowding.) Cook undisturbed until brown and caramelized on one side, 2 minutes. Flip over and cook another 1–2 minutes to brown and caramelize. (Note: To cook galbi on a grill, oil the grill grate, preheat to medium-high, and cook for 2 minutes per side.)
Remove beef to a serving platter. Wipe the pan clean with a paper towel and repeat with remaining oil and beef. Garnish beef with scallions. Serve with white rice or with lettuce leaves to wrap.
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