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Saturday, December 6, 2008

Galbi for dummies

I'm not a huge fan of Korean food. There's nothing explicitly wrong with it but unlike Thai, Japanese or Vietnamese food, few foods in the Korean diet excite me. It's certainly not something I'd want to eat for the rest of my life.

That said, there are a few Korean foods that I enjoy: ho dduk, bibimbap, mandu and galbi among them. I blogged before about my obsessive love of ho dduk but want to bring you along for a crash course on cooking and eating galbi.

The place we frequent is all-you-can eat for about $6.50. You get as much meat as you want (pork and beef) and an extraordinary number of side dishes, from kimchi and mushrooms to rice and many unidentifiable foods.

You cook the meat at an open grill on your table, adding garlic and onions for extra flavor.

The trick here is making sure the meat doesn't burn -- I'm getting better at managing that aspect but usually still end up with charred pieces in the corners of the grill. The meat cooks fairly quickly and you use large meat scissors to cut it into bite-sized pieces.

Once the meat is cooked, you wrap it in a lettuce leaf along with some greens, kimchi, rice, sauce, chillis -- whatever strikes your fancy. Wrap it up and yum, pop it in your mouth.

No galbi experience is complete without a bottle or two of Korean rice wine served in bamboo containers. And a large serving ho dduk or two for dessert.


  1. Yum, sounds so good. I have had that kind of meat at a sushi restaurant here and it is mighty nice.

  2. have you had duk boki off a street cart yet? I hear it's amazing when you buy it on a skewer!