Tips on Making Galbitang in a Slow Cooker

Galbitang or Korean braised short ribs is a creamy but delicate Korean soup that is made from Korean radish, short ribs, and glass noodles or dangmyun. These glass noodles are usually made with sweet potato starch. Galbitang most likely originated about 800 years ago during the declining days of the Goryeo Dynasty. Because beef historically has been expensive in Korea, that is why back then, galbitang was only served on special occasions. And today, it is still commonly served at traditional Korean wedding receptions.

Galbitang or Korean braised short ribs are a hearty, substantial dish that is intended to fill you up. This dish takes a lot of time to prepare, and it includes pre-soaking the ribs to remove traces of blood. That is why if you’re going to make this soup, we suggest that you plan ahead and pre-soak the bones a day before you plan to serve galbitang.  

Korean braised short ribs have been a favorite dish to order at Korean restaurants. Maybe this is because they have the right combination of sweet, savory, spicy, and totally yummy taste. But, let’s admit, we can’t afford to eat out every night, that is why when life and low funds get in the way, we will teach you how to prepare short ribs in a slow cooker. Trust us, the result will be equally delicious, and you will have a homemade dish that has a beef so tender it falls right off the bone.

Making Galbitang 

Even if there are several steps on how to make Korean braised short ribs, it’s easier than you think. In fact, the only part when it comes to cooking this beef slow cooker recipe is waiting for the hours until the timer goes off and enduring the delicious aromas drifting through your house.

The first step that you should remember when making the most scrumptious Korean braised short ribs is choosing the right cut of beef. You need to know that beef ribs are butchered in two ways, the English-style and the Flanken-style. The Flanken-style short slabs are always half an inch thick, and it often has a cross-section cut. On the other hand, the English-style short ribs are always cut between the ribs. This leaves a thick hunk of meat that is sitting atop a bone. 

When you are braising short ribs by using any method such as the slow cooker, we suggest that you use the English-style cut. This is because it prevents you from finding and fishing out those smaller cross-cut bones when the beef softens, breaks down, and falls off the rib while you’re cooking it. More often than not, the meat will fall off the bone of English short ribs too. However, the bones are larger and more comfortable to remove them before serving. Flanken-style short ribs are great for grilling, and it makes the perfect Korean barbeque recipes such as the “Kalbi-style” ribs.

Before you place your short ribs in your slow cooker, you have to make sure that you season your them with salt and pepper then sear them in a heavy-duty skillet that is lightly coated with olive oil. This way, your beef will have the chance to caramelize on all of its exposed surfaces. Adding blooms spices or seasonings, can magnify and add depth of flavor to the finished dish.

If you want to add a little more to the robust, well-rounded flavor of your Korean short rib recipe, then we suggest you add a delicious “sauce.” This unique and tasty sauce is made with garlic, ginger, pureed onion, and Asian pear along with other condiments such as soy sauce, sesame oil, rice wine, and gochujang. You can commonly find these additional ingredients in the international aisle of the most mainstream, larger supermarkets.

After the timer is up and you see that the ribs are fall-apart tender, you’re ready to round out this dish and top it with toasted sesame seeds. You can serve with grilled scallions, brown rice, shredded carrots or any other vegetable you like and maybe some traditional kimchi.