Spicy beef and vegetable soup

Yukgaejang 육개장

I’m re-introducing the delicious and nutritious yukgaejang to you today: spicy beef and vegetable soup. This soup is smoky, spicy, and rich, with healthy hunks of sliced beef and plenty of vegetables that are soft, but not mushy—they’re full of earthy mountain flavor from gosari (fernbrake). Served with rice, it’s a satisfying, warming meal.

I made a video for this recipe years ago. It was on my first low-def camera, and eventually the music was removed in a copyright claim. Even though the video was rough, the recipe was very good and many people used it to make delicious yukgaejang. I thought the time was right to remake the video in HD and rewrite the recipe.

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When Koreans make yukagejang, they always make it in large batches to make it worth the effort. Extra yukagaejang is full of good stuff and never goes to waste: you can bring some to your friend’s house, or a close neighbor may get a knock at the door and find you there with some yukgaejang to share!

It’s also common for Korean moms to make a big pot of yukagaejang to keep their family sustained while goes away for an extended time. That way she can visit her own mom and not worry about her children and husband starving at home. It can keep in the fridge for 3 to 4 days, or up to 1 week if you reheat it every other day. One of my readers told me he divides it into portions and then freezes them, and then takes out a portion whenever he wants some for a meal. Good tip!

Homemade yukgaejang is always better than yukgaejang at a restaurant, because you can take care to add a lot of the best ingredients, perfectly prepared. Some restaurants might not include gosari, either. It’s an essential ingredient!

Enjoy my updated yukgaejang recipe and let me know how yours turns out!

Korean spicy beef and vegetable soup (Yukgaejang:(육개장)yukgaejang (Korean spicy beef and vegetable soup: 육개장)

Ingredients

  • 1 pound beef brisket, cut into several pieces along the grain 3 inch long, soaked in cold water for 10 to 20 minutes, washed, and drained
  • 4 dried shiitake mushrooms
  • 1 medium onion, cut in half
  • 12 ounces (about 3 cups) mung bean sprouts (you can grow your own!), washed and strained
  • 3-4 large green onions (dae-pa) or 14-16 green onions, cut into 2½ inch long pieces
  • 6 ounces of soaked (or fresh) gosari (about 2 cups), cut into 2½ inch long pieces
  • 8 cloves of garlic, minced

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Sauce

On the side

  • Extra salt

Directions

Start cooking the beef, mushrooms, and onion:

  1. In a large pot, bring 3 quarts (12 cups) of water to a boil. Add the beef along with the dried shiitake mushrooms and the onion.yukgaejang making (육개장 만들기)
  2. Cook for 1 hour over medium high heat.

While it boils, make the seasoning sauce and prepare the vegetables:

  1. Combine the sauce ingredients in a bowl and mix it well.
    yukgaejang-sauce
  2. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside.
  3. Put the mung bean sprouts, green onions, gosari, and garlic in a large bowl.Yukgaejang (육개장)

Make the soup:

  1. 1 hour later, check the beef. Take a sample chunk and split it with your fingers or fork. If it splits nicely, it’s done. If it’s a little tough to split, let it cook for 10 more minutes. As stock boils off, you want to maintain about 10 cups’ worth, so add some water.
  2. When it’s done, remove the beef, onion, and mushrooms with a slotted strainer.
  3. Let the beef and mushrooms cool down and discard the cooked onion.
  4. Mix the vegetables with the seasoning sauce by hand until well incorporated. Add to the boiling stock.Yukgaejang (육개장)
  5. Cover and cook 20 minutes over medium high heat until the vegetables are cooked through and tender, but not mushy.
  6. Slice the mushrooms and pull the beef apart into strips. Add to the boiling soup and cook another 10 minutes.
    yukgaejang-mushroomsyukgaejang-beef

Serve:

  1. Remove from the heat, ladle and serve. Prepare a small bowl of salt on the table, for anyone who wants to add some. Serve with rice and side dishes. Before eating, people can add a pinch of salt to their taste if they like.
    Korean spicy beef and vegetable soup (Yukgaejang:(육개장)

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150 Comments:

  1. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    Wing,
    Use the one on the right which is hot pepper flakes.

  2. Wing& has 2,253 comments

    here is the pics. I forgot to copy the link in the last comment.

    http://i383.photobucket.com/albums/oo280/jeffesonm/031409_14091.jpg

  3. Wing& has 2,253 comments

    Hello Maangchi,

    I am in Hawaii, and I went to Korean store in here, I only found 2 kind of hot pepper power. which showed you below.

    Which one should I use it to Yuk Gae Jang? Was I bought the Mild hot or very hot?

    Thanks
    Wing

  4. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    ahrum,
    haha, you added more hot pepper flakes and soy sauce? You did a good job! I always encourage ppl to adjust my recipes to their taste.
    Gosari namul is very delicious, too. Check my bibimbap recipe where I show how to make kosari namul. You will love it. https://www.maangchi.com/recipe/bibimbap

  5. ahrum& has 2,253 comments

    Maangchi~ Thank you so much for your videos. My fiance just made yukgaejang today and it was delicious! My fiance and I spent a year in Korea together and we ate Korean food every day. Yukgaejang is one of our favorites but there are no Korean restaurants in NC. You have brought Korean food into our lives again! :-)

    One thing we noticed was that we think the yukgaejang we had in Korea was a LOT more spicy than your recipe so we just added more gochugaru and soy sauce. Also, we prepared TOO MUCH gosari than needed so we have a whole plastic bag of gosari in our fridge! The dried gosari really expands a lot! We’re going to make bibimbap tonight to use the rest of the gosari.

    Again, we both love your videos and we’ll be making a lot more Korean food because of it. Thank you!

  6. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    Wing,
    You can use either hot pepper flakes or hot pepper powder. I use hot pepper flakes.

    Your kimchi is not spicy enough? I think you got mild hot pepper flakes” (덜매운고추가루). https://www.maangchi.com/ingredients/hot-pepper-flakes

  7. Wing& has 2,253 comments

    Hi

    As your recipe, you said we should use hotpepper flakes, but in the video, you said power, which one is right? Since I used flakes to make it, but its too much hotpepper flakes at the end, and I might bougth the wrong one, because it was not spicy! haha!! BTW thanks for your video..it is very good!!!

    THanks

  8. sarah& has 2,253 comments

    wow, maangchi. you are doing a great job. i love love love your website. you are the bomb!

  9. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    idlehouse,
    wow, it looks good! hot and spicy! : )

  10. idlehouse& has 1 comment

    Hi Maangchi, I used your recipe and made a pot just as big as the one in your video! YUM!
    http://www.flickr.com/photos/idlehouse2004/3302576650/

  11. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    Klyn,
    Thank you very much!

    Nova,
    sure, bossam recipe will be included in the list of my upcoming video recipes. Thanks!

  12. Nova& has 2,253 comments

    Hi Maangchi :D I looovveeee your recipes! I became inspired to cook korean dish and in fact, I’m gonna buy the ingredients at korean market tomorrow. :) I <3 yukgaejang! oh, and do you have any bosam recipe?

    Thankssss so muchh!

  13. klyn& has 2,253 comments

    hi,
    ur amazing maangchi!ur so cute and ur voice to.
    i like ur video coz,i can learn more about the
    korean food,thnks to you!!!

  14. Maangchi New York City joined 8/08 & has 11,633 comments

    LD,
    I hope your “yukgaejang” turned out good!

    Shila,
    How did you know this soup is good for cold! You are very smart! Yeah, if kosari is not available, skip it then.

  15. sheila& has 2,253 comments

    Hey maangchi, thanks for the recipe for this dish. I made this for my boyfriend when he was sick and I think it really helped him in getting over his cold. The only thing I didn’t have was the kosari, but I think it still tasted good even without it. As you said, this dish is good for those cold days when you just want to warm up inside… thanks again =)

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