Braised beef short ribs

Galbi-jjim 갈비찜

Galbi-jjim (braised beef short ribs) is one of the most popular Korean dishes. It’s made with beef short ribs and is often prepared for special occasions.

Traditionally it’s a dish for special occasions such as Korean festival days like Chuseok, New Year’s Day (Seollal), or family’s birthdays, but you can make it for any occasion or as a weekend dish. It’s kind of a challenging recipe but the result is amazing: the meat is almost falling off the rib bones and is tender, sweet, savory, and irresistible.

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This is a recipe from my new cookbook, Maangchi’s Big Book of Korean Cooking, and it’s the first recipe I am posting in 2020, a remake of a recipe and video from 2008! This one is even more traditional than the one I posted 12 years ago, and includes ginkgo nuts, pine nuts, chestnuts and jujubes.

Choose good quality short ribs for this recipe, with lots of meat attached to the ribs. Remove the blood, excess fat, and impurities by soaking and blanching the ribs. If you skip this process, the final dish may smell off. Peak season for chestnuts is late fall, so if you use fresh chestnuts, that’s the best time. Fresh frozen skinned chestnuts are available all year round though, and available in the frozen section of Korean grocery stores. They also sell frozen ginkgo nuts, if you can’t find fresh ones.

I hope you enjoy this recipe, and make it for your friends and family! If any special guests coming over this will be a colorful center piece on the table. It’s January 5, 2020! I hope you are having a happy new year so far, and a prosperous and healthy new decade, too!

Ingredients

Serves 4

For the seasoning sauce and vegetables:

  • 4 dried shiitake mushrooms, washed and soaked in 2½ cups cold water for 3 to 4 hours, until soft
  • ⅓ cup soy sauce
  • ½ cup mirim (aka mirin), or water
  • ¼ cup sugar (white or brown, or swerve)
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 8 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 teaspoon minced peeled ginger
  • 1 medium size Korean radish (8 ounces to 12 ounces) or daikon, peeled
  • 2 large, thick carrots, peeled

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For the beef short ribs:

  • 2 pounds beef short ribs (8 pieces), rinsed and soaked in cold water for 30 minutes to 1 hour, changing water a couple of times
  • 12 peeled frozen chestnuts or fresh chestnuts (see how to skin fresh chestnuts below; frozen are sold pre-skinned)
  • 2 tablespoons rice syrup
  • 8 large dried jujubes, pitted

For garnish:

  • 12 pine nuts, tips removed (optional)
  • 12 frozen ginkgo nuts, shelled and cooked (optional); see how to shell and cook ginkgo nuts below

Directions

How to skin fresh chestnuts:

  1. Lay the chestnut on the flat side and slice off the flat end, then slice off the pointed end.
  2. Using a paring knife, slice down both of the narrower sides, removing the dark skin inside the shell.
  3. Peel off the remaining shell with your fingers. Trim away the dark skin on the outside of the chestnut so that it is a uniform creamy color.

How to cook ginkgo nuts:

  1. Heat about 2 teaspoons vegetable oil in a skillet over medium-high heat and add some shelled ginkgo nuts.
  2. Add some salt and stir-fry until the skins loosen and the color of the nuts changes to golden or bright green.
  3. Transfer to paper towels, fold the paper towels over the nuts, and gently massage the nuts to remove more skin.

Make the seasoning sauce and vegetables:

  1. After soaking the mushrooms, place a strainer over a bowl and drain.
  2. Measure out 2 cups of the soaking water. If it can’t make 2 cups, fill it with cold water. Transfer to a medium bowl; discard the remainder if you have.
  3. Add the soy sauce, mirim, sugar (or swerve), ground black pepper, garlic, and ginger and mix well with a spoon. Set the seasoning sauce aside.galbi jjim sauce
  4. Remove the stem from each mushroom and reserve for future use, like stir-fried rice. Cut each mushroom cap into quarters and transfer to a plate.
  5. Cut the radish into 1½-inch cubes and round the edges of each cube with a paring knife to make approximately 1-inch balls. Make 10 to 12 balls. Add to the plate with the mushrooms.radish balls
  6. Cut the carrots into 1½-inch cubes and round the edges of each cube with a paring knife to make approximately 1-inch balls. Make 10 to 12 balls. Add to the mushrooms and radish balls. galbijjim vegetables

Cook the beef short ribs:

  1. Fill a large, heavy pot halfway with water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Drain the ribs, rinse again, and add to the boiling water.
  2. Blanch for 5 minutes, stirring a few times. Drain and rinse thoroughly with cold water. Wash the pot with soapy water nicely.
  3. Put the ribs back to the pot and add the seasoning sauce. Cover and cook over medium-high heat for 20 minutes.
  4. Stir in the mushrooms, chestnuts, radishes, and carrots. Cover, turn down the heat to low, and cook for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
  5. Stir in the jujubes and rice syrup.galbi jjim (Korean braised beef short ribs)
  6. Cover and simmer for another 10 minutes, or until the meat is just about falling off the bone. Thicker short ribs will take longer. To check, poke the meat with a wooden skewer. If the meat is tender enough to serve, the skewer should go through easily. If it does not, add some water (about 1 cup) and cook a little longer, anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes, depending on the thickness of the short ribs.
  7. Increase the heat to high and spoon any remaining broth from the bottom of the pot over the meat and vegetables for a few minutes, until most of the sauce has reduced and the meat and vegetables are nicely glazed. galbijjim (Korean braised beef short ribs) 갈비찜

Serve:

  1. Transfer to a large platter, sprinkle with the pine nuts (if using) and ginkgo nuts (if using), and serve with rice and more side dishes.galbijjim (Korean braised beef short ribs) 갈비찜

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206 Comments:

  1. Webstar NY joined 2/19 & has 1 comment

    Thanks for the recipe! Still holding strong circa 2019!


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  2. Feli INFIRES by Korea Singapore joined 10/16 & has 2 comments

    MAANGCHI MAANGCHI !!! I made this galbijjim !!!! I am 15 this year making this galbijjim for my family and its sooooo delicious!! Thank you for the recipe .


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  3. sanne Munich joined 8/14 & has 208 comments

    I will make something similar one of the next days – But more important, I wanted to wish all of you

    Merry Christmas!

    Bye, Sanne.

  4. Ekarolina Denmark joined 8/16 & has 1 comment

    Maangchi, i cooked it last night for my parents in law, and everybody loved it, thank you for sharing this awesome recipe. Love from Denmark


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  5. elfximworl94 joined 5/15 & has 2 comments

    I made this for lunch today!! It was so delicious! I put some potato in it, it turns out a little bit mushy but it fits well with meat!!! The beef short rib is really tender and juicy with rich flavor in it!! Thanks Manngchi!!


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  6. julio-covarrubias joined 5/15 & has 1 comment

    Hello Maangchi,

    I am from Mexico … and I have made some of your recipes they are delicious, my family and I are very grateful with you for sharing your knowledge about Korean food!!!

    Tomorrow I will try this side dish Galbi Jjim… One question … What’s the name of the music/song in your video while you and your friend are preparing the Galbi Jjim ???
    I would be grateful if you could tell me the name of that music/song I like it a lot :-)

    Your website is very nice and very professional … Congrats!!!
    Thanks and Regards from Mexico!!!

  7. Lovetocook San Francisco joined 12/12 & has 14 comments

    Hi Maangchi, how many pieces/pounds of radish do you use? It does not say in the recipe or the video? Thanks!

    • Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,798 comments

      This video was filmed a long long time ago! Use 1 or 2 medium size carrots and the same amount of radish. It will turn out good. And check out my another easy galbijjim recipe, too. https://www.maangchi.com/recipe/makgalbijjim

      • Lovetocook San Francisco joined 12/12 & has 14 comments

        Ah okay. Thank you Maangchi. I will definitely try both of your recipes. They look so delicious! I will upload some pics after I make some. Thank you again.

      • Lovetocook San Francisco joined 12/12 & has 14 comments

        Hi Maangchi, I recently tried making this recipe and the meat came out very hard and chewy, not tender at all!! I followed the directions for your recipe exactly as said but the meat was very hard to eat…….. ;'(

        • Lovetocook San Francisco joined 12/12 & has 14 comments

          Hi Maangchi or anyone who sees my comment. I want to make this again so any tips, help or advise on this dish would be great. My first try was not that good. Thanks!! :)

          • aru103 joined 11/15 & has 1 comment

            Hi Lovetoocook, my galbi also turned out not tender but rather chewy and hard. So I asked my mom for tips and she told me to boil longer at med/low heat then the meat came out very tender that it was coming out of the bone w no effort. Hope this helps. Galbijjim is one of my favorite food and hope yours turn out well next time you try. :)

          • Lovetocook San Francisco joined 12/12 & has 14 comments

            Hi aru103, thank you very much for the advice. How much longer did you boil it for?

  8. everybodyneedsalinda kansas city joined 8/14 & has 1 comment

    my mom told me that she rounds out (root) vegetables so that when they cook the edges don’t get mushy and keeps them evenly cooked (and handsome looking).

  9. alohanoa HI joined 3/14 & has 3 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    Thank you so much for sharing this. I made this tonight, and tasted so good, and so genuine. I only did a couple of things differently:

    1. Instead of par-boiling the meat, I dusted the meat with corn start and browned them first.
    2. Then I threw everything in the slow cooker and put it on Low for 6 hours (I read from another poster that’s what they did for the slow cooker).
    3. After that, I put the entire thing on the stove and boiled it to thicken the soup.
    4. Instead of corn syrup, I used molasses, because that’s what I had on-hand.

    I am ethnically Korean, but have never been taught to cook Korean food, and so I was so excited to find your site. I will definitely be trying more of your delicious recipes!

  10. byungsun montreal joined 10/12 & has 2 comments

    Is there a substitute to rice wine?

  11. SteIIa United Kingdom joined 8/13 & has 1 comment

    Maangchi, I once had this pork kalbi when I went to Nepal for a holiday. The meat was thinly sliced like in your spicy pork recipe. And the bones were within the meat, thin and edible. Do you have a recipe for that? Or know how to make it?

  12. rc137 San Francisco joined 6/13 & has 1 comment

    If I want to use more short rib, increase amount of other ingredients?

  13. globug IL joined 4/13 & has 1 comment

    In one of the comments you mentioned this could be made using the crockpot. Should I set it on high or low? How long should I let it cook? Do I put all the ingredients in at one time? I love browsing your website for dinner ideas!!

  14. Aznslaya7 USA joined 1/13 & has 3 comments

    How many people does this serve? Four?

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