Korean Barbecue Portobellos


Bill Kim's mother makes a version of this marinade for her bulgogi, thinly sliced Korean-style short ribs. The sweet-and-savory marinade is also great with meaty portobellos — the longer they marinate, the better. 

Active Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs


  • 1/2 small onion, halved

  • 1/2 Asian pear, cored and quartered

  • 1 small kiwi, peeled and quartered

  • 8 garlic cloves, smashed and peeled

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh ginger

  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar

  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar

  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil

  • 3/4 cup soy sauce

  • 1 1/2 cups water

  • Six 6-ounce portobello mushrooms, stemmed and gills scraped


  1. In a blender, combine the onion, Asian pear, kiwi, garlic, ginger, both sugars, sesame oil, soy sauce and water and puree until smooth.

  2. Arrange the mushroom caps in a shallow baking dish and pour the marinade on top. Turn the mushrooms to coat them completely with the marinade. Let the mushrooms stand at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or refrigerate for up to 24 hours.

  3. Light a grill. Lift the mushrooms from the marinade, shaking off the excess. Grill over moderately high heat, turning occasionally, until tender, about 12 minutes.

Make Ahead

The marinade can be refrigerated for up to 3 days.


Variation The marinade is great for thinly sliced flanken-style short ribs or steak.

Serve With

Steamed rice, lettuce leaves and kimchi.

Suggested Pairing

Fresh, peppery Côtes-du-Rhône.

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