Korean food is known for its barbecued and grilled beef dishes, but pork is actually the most popular meat among Korean consumers. (This is probably more a matter of cost than of preference; beef is very expensive in Korea.)

The most characteristically Korean pork dish is samgyeopsal, a type of barbecued pork belly meat that I think of as Korean bacon. I’m not a fan of samgyeopsal, but I do like donyuk gui, which is sort of like Korean pork chops. Donyuk gui is also relatively easy to make and doesn’t require a grill. Here’s the recipe:

Donyuk Gui (Pork Fillets) — 돈육구이

Serves 4-6


  • 2 lb. pork tenderloin, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tbs. sesame oil

For marinade:

  • ½ c. soy sauce*
  • ¼ c. water
  • 3 Tbs. sugar
  • 2 scallions, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 in. piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped
  • salt and pepper

**To make this recipe gluten free, I substituted San-J Organic Tamari Gluten-Free Soy Sauce (available at Whole Foods or for $6.69 + shipping on Amazon.com.)


  • Combine all the marinade ingredients in a shallow dish and add the pork slices.
  • Baste well, then set aside at room temperature for 2 hours, basting occasionally.
  • Preheat oven to 375.
  • Remove the pork from the marinade and dry on kitchen towels. Reserve the marinade.
  • Coat the bottom and sides of a baking dish with the oil. Arrange the pork slices in the dish in one layer. Cover and bake the meat for 45 minutes to 1 hour or until it is tender.
  • Meanwhile, pour the marinade into a saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes or until it has reduced slightly.
  • Remove the meat from the oven and arrange it on a warmed serving dish. Pour the cooking juices into the saucepan with the marinade and bring to a boil again. Pour a little over the pork and serve the rest with the meat.

[Recipe from Foods of the Orient: Japan & Korea, now out of print]