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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214 Comments:

  1. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    THU,
    Thank you! Don’t forget to let me know how your galbijjim (beef short ribs) turns out. : )

  2. THU& has 1 comment

    hi maangchi, I love your video . It’s simple and easy to make.. iam going to use your video to make kimchi and beef short ribs today…keep up your work!!!!

  3. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    juliet,
    Happy New Year! : )

  4. juliet& has 1 comment

    hi Maangchi, It seems that i search so many website for korean recipe and i`m not satisfied… thank god i saw one of your recipe in youtube.your recipes looks really delicious.and thank you also you have your own website for preparing the menu.Belated,HAPPY NEW YEAR(saeae bok manni patuseyo!)more power

  5. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    James,
    If your galbijjim is not cooked well but it’s burning, you will have to pour more water. I think you should turn off the heat before it burns.

  6. James& has 2 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    I recently cooked using this recipe, but I found that the bottom of the pot burned slightly… it this supposed to happen or should I have used more water?

  7. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    Portugalbear,
    Any cooking rice wine will be ok. I sometimes just use wine for drink. Yes, mirim sounds good, too.

  8. Portugalbear& has 16 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    Can you also post a picture of the rice wine you used in this recipe. Is this the same as the Japanese mirin?

  9. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    John,
    Please read my answer the above!!!
    Follow the recipe tightly. Did you use corn syrup?

  10. John Chung& has 1 comment

    Maangchi,

    I have tried to make the galbi jim a few times and the problem that I keep having is that I end up with more water. So the galbi jim looks and tastes like soup. I cook the galbi jim for about 2 hours. How do you get it so black and shiny?

  11. sara_smile& has 2,260 comments

    Been checking out all your recipes and going to buy your book on amazon as everything looks absolutely postively delicious!!! Thank you for sharing your gift of cooking…as we say in Hawaii, Mahalo Nui Loa :)

  12. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    john,
    actually I’m making galbijjim now because my friends are coming for dinner tonight.

    When your galbijjim is cooked tender enough, heat it up over high heat to evaporate excessive liquid. Don’t forget to open the lid and pour the liquid on the bottom of the pot over the top of galbijjim.

  13. john& has 2,260 comments

    Hi Maangchi,

    I’ve tried to make the galbijim twice following your recipe, but, it comes out to watery. I tried to cut down on the water and increase the soysauce. Any advice?

  14. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,865 comments

    Candice,
    You don’t need to soak them if you use fresh mushrooms

  15. Candice& has 2 comments

    Hi!
    If I get fresh shiitake mushrooms, should I still soak them?
    Thanks:)

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