Jangjorim (Korean Soy-Braised Beef)
Jangjorim is a chilled, Korean soy-braised beef dish that is salty and slightly sweet. While commonly served as a side dish, it can also be used to make some quick and delicious jangjorim bibimbap.
Jangjorim (장조림) is a salty and slightly sweet soy-braised beef that is served chilled as a side dish (banchan, 반찬).
It can be stored in an air-tight container in the refrigerator for up to 7 days.
Cuts of Meat
I use beef brisket in my recipe. However, some other popular meat cuts are beef eye round, flank steak, and shank meat. These are all relatively tough cuts of meat. However, if you cook them for a good amount of time (about 1 hour in this recipe) the meat becomes very tender.
Before I cook the beef brisket, I like to soak it in cold water to draw out some of the blood. This will give you a cleaner broth for the jangjorim sauce. After this step, I simmer the brisket with the aromatics (onion, garlic, whole black peppercorns, bay leaf, and ginger) for 45 minutes, and then another 15 minutes with the anchovy seafood dashima soup packet. The umami flavor from the dashima packet is important for the taste of the sauce.
Some recipes also add Korean radish (moo, 무) and mirin (rice wine), but I do not find these ingredients to be necessary.
The soy sauce is intentionally added near the end of the cook time. The salt from the soy sauce would otherwise draw out moisture and toughen the meat. Some coconut sugar is also added for some sweetness to balance out the saltiness. And just to note, this recipe uses less soy sauce than some of the other recipes I found online. I wrote this recipe to reflect the taste of my grandmother’s jangjorim, which is what I prefer.
I also like adding shishito peppers since it adds a mild pepper flavor without the heat. If you want spicy jangjorim, simply substitute the shishito peppers with one sliced jalapeño.
It is common to let hard boiled eggs (even quail eggs) marinate in the jangjorim sauce. I like to add soft-boiled eggs (see kimchi bibim guksu recipe for soft-boiled egg), which have a custard-like yolk. While the jangjorim beef can last up to a week in the refrigerator, I would eat the eggs within a couple days.
If I want to make a main dish out of jangjorim, I like to make jangjorim bibimbap (장조림 비빔밥). In direct translation, it means jangjorim mixed rice in Korean. It consists of some warm white rice mixed with butter, jangjorim, crushed, dried seaweed, charred green onions and shiitake mushrooms. The latter two are my unique additions. I like the smoky flavor from the charred green onions and earthy umami flavor from the shiitake mushrooms.
You will also find recipes mixing in some scrambled eggs. However, I find that added eggs makes the dish a bit too rich for my taste. Most recipes also add some sort of pickled vegetable component. I like to add some Korean pickled cucumber called jangajji (장아찌). I will post my jangajji recipe soon. While not necessary, it does cut some of the richness from the butter and adds a tangy flavor profile to this savory rice bowl.
When I was a kid, my grandmother used to make this pretty often for me. The butter is key in this mixed rice bowl. It adds richness and enhances the flavor of the jangjorim sauce.
Once the jangjorim is already made, it is easy to make this rice bowl on a whim for a quick meal. I recommend eating it with a side of kimchi.
Mise en place
If you make this Jangjorim I would love to hear your thoughts! Feel free to leave a comment and/or recipe rating at the bottom of this page. And if you have a photo of your food, be sure to tag me on Instagram!
Jangjorim (Korean Soy-Braised Beef)
- 1 ½ lb beef brisket (roughly 3" by 10" slices)
- 5 cups water
- 4 g ginger
- 15 garlic cloves, peeled
- ½ onion
- 10 whole black peppercorns
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 anchovy seafood soup packet
- ¾ cup soy sauce
- 6 ½ tbsp coconut sugar
- 14 shishito peppers
- roasted sesame seeds (optional garnish)
Optional Jangjorim Rice (1 serving)
- 1 cup white rice, cooked
- ¼ cup green onions, cut on the bias (about 2 green onions)
- ¼ cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
- ½ tbsp butter
- roasted seaweed sheets, crushed
- extra virgin olive oil (EVOO)
- Cut the brisket into 3×10 inch cuts. Soak the brisket in cold water for 1 hour in a large pot, changing the water once after the first 30 minutes. This will remove some of the blood from the brisket, resulting in a cleaner broth.
- Drain the water from the pot. (Make sure to disinfect any surfaces the discarded water may have touched e.g. kitchen sink, counter).
- Add the onion, ginger, and garlic, bay leaf, and the 5 cups of water (or enough water to cover the brisket) to the pot with the brisket, and bring it to a boil. Use a skimmer to remove any residue that boils to the top.
- Let it simmer covered with the lid on for about 1 hour or until the meat is tender. In the last 15 minutes, add the anchovy seafood packets.
- Pour out the broth over a colander into a heatproof bowl. Place the brisket back into the pot, and discard everything else in the colander.
- Let the brisket cool down a bit (but not completely) and shred the brisket. If you let it cool completely the brisket will toughen and be difficult to shred.
- Add 3 cups of the broth back into the pot with the brisket.
- Stir in the soy sauce and coconut sugar.
- Poke holes into the shisito peppers lengthwise using a fork. This will help the sauce marinate the peppers. Add the shishito peppers to the pot and let it simmer for another 10 minutes.
- Let it cool for about 30 minutes and transfer it to an airtight container.
- Store it in the fridge and serve chilled.
Optional Jangjorim Rice
- Heat a skillet over medium heat with some EVOO.
- Sautée the green onions until lightly charred.
- Repeat with the shiitake mushrooms, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.
- Add a cup of warm cooked white rice to a bowl. Mix in the butter, crushed seaweed, green onions, and shiitake mushrooms until the ingredients are well incorporated.
- Top with some jangjorim, jangjorim sauce, and roasted sesame seeds. Serve immediately.