Recipe: Korean-Style Beef and Broccoli Bowl

Recipe: Korean-Style Beef and Broccoli Bowl

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

The sweet-savory flavors of Korean barbecued meats lure me in every time — especially when served alongside a big bowl of fluffy rice. The combination of honey, soy sauce, and sesame transforms affordable flank steak into a dish that rivals the one at your favorite Korean restaurant.

Here's how to skip the grilling and make a delicious one-pan bulgogi-style beef rice bowl on a busy weeknight, complete with broccoli so that you don't have to make an extra side dish or vegetable.

Sauce That Doubles as a Marinade

This quick dinner is made possible by stir-frying so that food cooks quickly and all in one pan. One of my favorite tricks for easy stir-frying is to use some of the stir-fry sauce to quickly marinate the sliced meat. And by quick, I mean that the meat only needs to sit in the marinade for a few minutes (don't worry — it still soaks up tons of flavor!). One sauce, two uses.

Instead of breaking out another pan to cook the broccoli, I just steam it in a little bit of water first in the wok or frying pan. The key is covering the pan so that the broccoli cooks quickly. When the broccoli's ready, just drain it and then use the pan to finish up the stir-fry. The beef and broccoli are tasty over rice, but you can also serve them over noodles or even wrapped in lettuce and topped with kimchi.

(Image credit: Lauren Volo)

Korean-Style Beef and Broccoli Bowl

Serves 4

For the beef and sauce:
1 pound flank steak, trimmed of excess fat and sinew
1/4 cup tamari or soy sauce
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
1 tablespoon water

For the stir-fry:
1 pound fresh or frozen broccoli florets
3 teaspoons vegetable oil, divided
1 tablespoon peeled, minced fresh ginger
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon toasted sesame seeds (optional)
Steamed white rice or brown rice, for serving

Marinate the beef and make the sauce: Cut the steak crosswise (with the grain) into 2- to 3-inch-wide strips. Cut each strip across the grain into 1/4-inch-thick pieces. Place the beef in a medium bowl; set aside.

Whisk the remaining ingredients in a small bowl until the cornstarch and sugar are fully dissolved. Transfer 2 tablespoons of this sauce mixture to the bowl of beef and toss to coat the meat; set the beef and remaining sauce aside.

Make the stir-fry: Fill a large frying pan halfway with water and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the broccoli, cover, and cook, stirring halfway through, until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes total. Drain and set aside.

Wipe the pan dry and heat over medium-high heat until a drop of water vaporizes immediately on contact. Drizzle in 1 teaspoon of the oil, then add half of the beef and spread into an even layer. Cook undisturbed until the beef begins to sear, about 1 minute. Using a metal spatula, stir-fry until the beef is lightly browned but not cooked through, about 30 seconds more. Transfer to a large plate. Repeat with another teaspoon of oil and the remaining beef.

Drizzle the remaining teaspoon of oil into the pan. Add the ginger and garlic, and stir-fry until the garlic is fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broccoli and beef and any accumulated juices, and stir to combine. Whisk the sauce again to recombine and dissolve the cornstarch, then add to the pan. Stir-fry until the beef is just cooked through and the sauce thickens and is glossy, 1 to 2 minutes. Transfer to a serving dish, sprinkle with the scallions and sesame seeds if using, and serve over rice.

Recipe Notes

  • Make ahead: The sauce can be made and stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days. Re-whisk before using to dissolve the cornstarch.
  • Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
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