korean beef stew
This Korean beef stew is packed with umami flavor, thanks to some of my favorite ingredients: beef tips, tomato paste, soy sauce, and red wine.
I’m not professing that this is authentic Korean food by any means. Like many of my recipes, it is simply an amalgamation of ingredients I find delicious (or simply available in the fridge after a full day of work) combined in ways that excite me and puts a hot, healthy-ish meal on the table. My mom calls this type of dish “boh-khor o nah-porse”. In Farsi this means “eat and don’t ask” and is used to describe a recipe-less dish that was created out of hunger and necessity. This “korean” beef stew is my boh-khor o nah-porse. I was inspired by a recipe in Bon Appetit that combined soy sauce and red wine and wanted to use the organic beef tips burning a hole in my freezer. The result was a savory, slightly sweet hearty beef stew that is Korean adjacent. Served over rice alongside roasted asparagus or broccoli, this is a perfect weeknight dish regardless of national origin.
- 1 ½ teaspoon sea salt
- ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 pounds beef tips
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons canola oil
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 5 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon grated ginger (or ginger paste from a tube for convenience)
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- ½ cup red wine
- 4 cups low-sodium broth (chicken or beef)
- 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, sliced
- ¼ cup soy sauce
- ½ teaspoon red chili flakes
- 1 tablespoon brown sugar
- 8 ounces frozen peas, don’t defrost
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1–2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
- ¼ cup green onions, chopped on a bias
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped plus extra for garnish
- Combine the salt and pepper in a small bowl. Place the beef in a large bowl and toss with the salt and pepper to evenly coat. Once evenly coated, toss with flour to evenly coat the beef.
- Heat half the oil in a 12 inch diameter dutch oven or heavy bottom pot over medium high heat until the oil begins to ripple.
- Brown the beef in a single layer (cooking in batches if necessary) 5-8 minutes per side. Transfer the browned beef to a large plate.
- Heat the rest of the oil in the now empty pot and add the sliced onion. Stir with a wooden spoon and cook until the onions are softened about 5 minutes. If the bottom of the pot is turning dark brown, add a splash of water to deglaze and scrape up the brown bits with a wooden spoon.
- Add the garlic and ginger and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
- Add the tomato paste and cook, stirring frequently until the paste is dark red, about 3 minutes.
- Add the red wine and cook until the liquid evaporates, scrape the bottom of the pot using your wooden spoon to release food stuck to the bottom.
- Add the broth and mushrooms to the pot along with the browned meat and any juices that have accumulated in the plate. Bring to a boil then lower the heat to low so the stew is at a steady simmer.
- Add the soy sauce, chili flakes, and brown sugar to the pot.
- Cover the pot with it’s lid and simmer for an hour over low heat.
- Check on the stew once every 20 minutes and stir with a wooden spoon, scraping the bottom to make sure nothing is sticking to the pot.
- After 1 hour, remove the lid and stir in the frozen pea. Whisk together the vinegar and cornstarch and stream into the stew while stirring.
- Simmer the stew uncovered until the stew has thickened and the peas are warmed through, about 20 minutes. Drizzle sesame oil into the stew (start with 1 teaspoon and add one more if desired after tasting).
- Sir in the green onions and cilantro. Taste and add more salt and pepper if necessary. Serve over white or brown rice.