Thursday, November 1, 2012

Braised Short Rib Stew

I will get back to the sweet stuff after this I swear (scouts honor) I just wanted to share with you one of my many favorite Korean foods.  I love this dish, it is the perfect cold weather rainy day food.  It was my go to comfort food in Korea.  I hope you enjoy it!

Based on recipe found in The Food and Cooking of Korea
What you will need:
        About 4 hours, you need to soak the ribs and this is a slow cooked meal so be sure to prep the night       before or have about 4 hours to make this delicious stew.

  • 2Ib short ribs cut into 2in squares (I used spare ribs and cut them to size myself)
  • 3 dried shiitake mushrooms, soaked in warm water for about 30 min. until softened (you could also use fresh if you can't find dried, I think the dried ones add a stronger flavor to the whole shabang)
  • 1/2 onion, roughly cubed
  • 1/2 carrot, roughly cubed
  • 1/2 potato roughly cubed 
  • 3oz Chinese white radish, peeled and roughly diced
  • 2 spring onions (scallions) finely sliced
  • 4 chestnuts (I left these out but feel free to add them)
  • 2 red dates (I used dried ones that were pitted, use what you can find, these do add a bit of flavor to the stew so I suggest adding them if you can find them.)
  • 2 tbsp rice wine (I just used a white cooking wine)
  • 4 ginkgo nuts, to garnish (I didn't bother with these, pine nuts would also work, I just sliced up a green onion for garnish)
  • 1/2 Asian pear 
  • 4 tbsp light soy sauce (I have a hard time finding different types of soy sauce here so I just use 2 tbsp regular and 2 tbsp low sodium, if you just use regular soy sauce you will end up with a salty stew)
  • 4 tsp sugar
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 tsp ginger, grated
  • 1 tbsp sesame seeds (I left these out because I am not a big fan, but they do add nice flavor if you like the little guys)
  • 4 tsp sesame oil 
  • ground black pepper to taste

All the veggies cut up
Seasoning Marinade 
  1. Soak the ribs in a bowl of cold water for about 3 hours to drain the blood.  Change the water 1-2 times as it becomes discolored.  
  2. Drain the ribs and place in a medium-large sized pot, cover with water and bring to a boil.  Once boiling remove ribs from heat, place them in a strainer and rinse with cold water.  Strain and reserve the boiling broth for later.  
  3. Slice the soaked shiitake mushrooms and throw out the stems.  Cut the rest of the vegetables at this time.  
  4. To make the seasoning peel the pear and grate, be sure to reserve the juice and the pear gratings.  
  5. Add the pear  (juice and all) into a bowl and mix in all the other seasonings.
  6. Use a knife to make deep cuts in the ribs and place them in the bowl of seasoning, work the seasoning into the ribs with your hands and then let sit for 20 min. (If you are in a hurry you can skip this step but it will taste much better if you let the whole thing sit)
  7. Transfer ribs and seasoning mixture into a large pan.  Add the veggies and pour in a scant cup of the boiling broth.  Set heat to high and bring stew to a boil.
  8. Once the liquid is boiling add the rice wine and cover the pan, reduce the heat and let simmer for 1 hour.  Keep an eye on the stew and add more broth as needed to ensure all the veggies and ribs are covered.
  9. Garnish wish sesame seeds, ginkgo nuts and sliced green onion.

Everything in the pot.
Serve this delicious stew with steamed rice and radish kimchi if you happen to have some. 

I hope you enjoy it as much as I do!