Pressure Cooker Braised Oxtail (Kkorijjim)

Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail!

I have a new favorite kitchen appliance! Thanks to many of you who have asked for pressure cooker (or Instant Pot) recipes, I finally bought an Instant Pot, and I’m very pleased with it! The Instant Pot is a multi-function gadget that pressure-cooks, slow-cooks, steams, etc. To start out, I made this braised oxtail (kkorijjim or ggorijjim, 꼬리찜) using its pressure cooking function. Amazing!

Oxtail is a tough cut of meat that usually takes hours to bring out its tenderness, but it only takes 45 minutes in the pressure cooker. Stovetop pressure cookers may take less cooking time. 

Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail!

In Korea, oxtails are common but very expensive. They are typically braised (kkorijjim) or made into soup (kkori gomtang, 꼬리곰탕), both of which are extremely popular as nourishing dishes. Lucky for us, oxtails are relatively affordable around here. Look for a package with larger pieces.

For those of you who’re not familiar with oxtail, it is the tail of a cow which is bony, fatty, and highly rich in connective tissues and collagen. Slow or pressure cooking breaks down the collagen into a rich, flavorful gelatin, making the dish incredibly delicious and satisfying!

Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail!

As I mentioned in my slow cooker galbijjim recipe, the Korean traditional braising technique does not involve initial searing of the meat. However, since I’m using one of the latest technology kitchen gadgets, that has the “Sauté” function, I decided to try it and sear the meat. You can skip this step if you want.

The braising liquid is similar to the one used for galbijjim (braised short ribs). As a sweetener, I like to use honey (or a combination of honey and sugar) for a richer flavor, but you can use all sugar or all honey. Here, I also used a little bit of Korean green plum syrup (maesilcheong), which is a staple in modern Korean cooking as a sugar substitute. It gives the dish slightly acidic, fruity sweetness which rounds up the flavors nicely. Pineapple juice can be a good substitute, or simply use sugar and/or honey.  

Pressure cooker Kkorijjim (Korean braised oxtail)!

DSC 1834 150x150 1 - Pressure Cooker Braised Oxtail (Kkorijjim)

Pressure Cooker Braised Oxtail (Kkorijjim)

4.21 from 44 votes
Servings: 4
Print Recipe

Ingredients

  • 3 to 4 pounds oxtail
  • 1/2 medium onion cut into large chunks
  • 1 to 2 carrots cut into large chunks
  • 3 to 4 dried shiitake mushrooms briefly soaked and quartered (omit if unavailable)

Braising liquid

  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice wine or mirin or dry white wine
  • 1/2 medium Korean/Asian pear, grated or 1 bosc pear or apple
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 2 teaspoons grated ginger
  • 4 tablespoons honey or sugar (or 2 tablespoons each)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons maesil cheong (Korean plum extract) - optional
  • pepper to taste

Other additions and garnishes

  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 scallions roughly chopped (and some finely sliced for optional garnish)
  • sesame seeds - optional

Instructions

  • Trim off excess fat. Rinse the oxtail pieces and let them sit in cold water for 10 to 20 minutes to draw out excess blood. Drain well, and pat dry with paper towels.
    Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail (kkorijjim)!
  • Press the “Saute” button on the Instant Pot. When the pot is hot, add 1 tablespoon of canola or vegetable oil. Sear the oxtail pieces in two batches, browning all sides. (Parboiling alternative: Place the oxtail in the Instant Pot, add 2 cups of water and cook for 5 minutes on the Manual setting. Quick release the steam, discard the cooking liquid, and rinse the oxtail pieces and the pot.)
  • Mix together the braising liquid ingredients. Place the oxtail pieces in one layer in the pot, and pour the braising liquid over.
    Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail (kkorijjim)!
  • Add the vegetables.
    Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail!
  • Close the lid tightly. Press the “Meat” function, and using the “+” button, increase the time to 45 minutes. When finished, the Instant Pot will automatically turn to the “Keep Warm” mode. Leave the pressure cooker alone for about 10 minutes before opening the lid.
    Pressure cooker Korean braised oxtail!
  • Remove the meat and vegetables from the pressure cooker. Strain the cooking liquid into a bowl to skim off the fat. I use a fat separator. (See note.) At this point, you can reduce the sauce in the Instant Pot using the Saute function if desired. Return the oxtail to the pot, and stir in the scallion and the sesame oil. Serve with the optional garnish.

Notes

You can use a fat separator to remove excess fat. You can also cool the sauce in the fridge or freezer until the fat solidifies to spoon off, and then reheat the sauce. 
Tried this recipe?Mention @koreanbapsang or tag #koreanbapsang!
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