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. altodemanila Manila, Philippines joined 3/10 & has 3 comments

    Dear Maangchi,

    In the Philippines we usually have Galbi jim in a “saucier” or “brothier” version. What do we have to do to achieve this?

  2. jtlaharder joined 3/10 & has 1 comment

    Can I use boneless short ribs?

  3. hwangsnook joined 2/10 & has 1 comment

    Thanks for having a wonderful website of delicious recipes. I’ve tried several galbi recipes and yours was easy and great tasting. I’ve taken several Korean cooking classes in Korea with foreigners and it was so much fun that I’m longing to have one. Most of my foreign friends are back home so I’ll try to connect online w/your website. I’m so glad it’s in English, too… Great job, I’ll spread the news..

  4. crownzeal joined 2/10 & has 1 comment

    Oh wow, your site is so great! I can’t wait to try this recipe out. Thanks!

  5. Amber727 New Jersey joined 7/09 & has 36 comments

    Hello,

    Could I make this with only potatoes and carrots or with no veggies? I love veggies, but my boyfriend does not. I want him to try something new. lol I thought this would be a good dish to try.

  6. 부엉이& has 1 comment

    와. 한국에 소개되서 방문하는 사람이 많겠어요. 정말 좋네요.
    올해 구정때는 갈비찜 해봐야겠어요!
    행복하게 사세요! 우리 엄마 같아요^^

  7. Kyung& has 1 comment

    Thank you so much for your website! I have been going crazy with cooking Korean all last week and this week. I made galbijjim tonight and it was amazing! I’ll have to send you pics of all that I made so far.

    Not sure if anyone brought this up, but I found that using a microplane grater to be really convenient for shaping the carrots and radish into little spheres. (And you can use the radish gratings to put into memilgooksu! Kinda out of season but still delicious!)

  8. Joyce from Hong Kong& has 2,260 comments

    maangchi!!! i love your website so much!!!!

  9. Nan& has 2,260 comments

    Hey Maangchi,

    If I use beef stew meat instead what should I reduce the cooking time to so that it isn’t hard and overcooked?

  10. elle in california& has 1 comment

    i looked at the galbijjim picture and just had to ask my mom if i could make this when i go home this week. can’t wait! i’ve been telling her to experiment more with other dishes instead of making the same food for last several years. =P

    i can’t wait until next year when i move into a kitchen dormitory to make hankukeumshik for dinner. :D

  11. Julie& has 1 comment

    Can you cook the galbijjim in the crockpot?

  12. tata& has 4 comments

    Maangchi,few weeks ago i tried Korean curry in a restaurant,i was very delicious.Please,when you get the chance ,show how to make it
    Thank you

  13. tata& has 4 comments

    Maangchi,im cooking beef short ribs now
    cant wait to taste it)

  14. port vila& has 1 comment

    I just joined your helpful site. I made the japchae yesterday and my friends loved it. I can’t wait to cook this short ribs tomorrow! thx!!

  15. pw& has 1 comment

    i really want to try this recipe but only have boneless short ribs in my fridge. can this recipe be used for boneless short ribs? and would the recipe need to be adapted in any way? thanks!

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