Thursday, August 28, 2008

Daeji Bulgogi (Spicy Korean Pork Barbecue)

I adore pork in its many incarnations -- bacon, ham, ribs, bacon, sausages, bacon, and the list goes on. Among the most versatile are pork loin and tenderloin, which we use a lot on the grill because they absorb flavor so well, are healthy, and stay very tender.

This evening we made Daeji Bulgogi, which is a Cooking Light recipe for pork that is marinated and stir-fried on the grill in a grill wok or pan. The marinade is very easy and has incredible flavor. And I love pretty much anything with dark sesame oil.

You can buy a variety of chile pastes, and their heat levels vary. I've tried this with a jarred chile paste with garlic, which I found in the Asian foods section, and this gives the pork a milder flavor. To punch up the heat level significantly, use sambal oelek, a Thai chile paste. You could omit the crushed red pepper flakes in that case, but hey, live a little. And keep a glass of milk handy.

Daeji Bulgogi
Serves 3-4

1 lb. pork loin or tenderloin, halved lengthwise and cut in 1/4" slices
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
1 1/2 Tbsp. chile paste
1 tsp. fresh ginger, grated
1 tsp. dark sesame oil
1/2 tsp. crushed red pepper
3 garlic cloves, minced
Cooking spray

1. Combine the sugar, soy sauce, chile paste, ginger, oil, crushed red pepper, and garlic. Add to pork in a zip-top bag. Refrigerate 1 to 4 hours.

2. Heat grill on medium-low to medium.

3. Coat grill wok or pan with cooking spray and place on grill rack. Add pork to wok or pan.

4. Grill about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until pork is cooked through.

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