If you're a vegetarian, ignore what I'm about to say--otherwise, drop whatever you're doing and get yourself to the market to buy the ingredients for these incredibly flavorful and tender soy-braised short ribs. If you're still reading this, you're moving too slowly! Hurry! They're that kind of good!
No one in my family is much of a meat eater. For years my kids wouldn't touch the stuff which was fine with me because I didn't really care for it all that much myself. Give me the side of veggies and I'm a happy girl. But I have entirely different feelings about these short ribs. In short, I LOVE THEM! And that's actually an understatement! These are so meltingly fall-apart tender and "right" for cold winter nights with a wonderful Asian flair. My family, well, at least the 3 of us that were home when I made this (sorry boys, I'll have to make it when you're on break again) all sat in silence as we inhaled the meal.
And quite possibly, one of the best parts is that it's incredibly easy to prepare. Sure it has to cook for a bunch of hours, but all you have to do every so often, is flip and rotate the ribs in the sauce. Not much effort for a gangbuster reward!
And it's not just the ribs that are amazing, but also the veggies which get infused with that wonderful sauce and become so tender and flavorful. Make a pot of rice and you've got a complete meal in a bowl!
Truly, if you try one new dish this winter, let it be this. Yes, short ribs are a little bit pricey, but as a once-in-a-while treat they are so, so worth it! Now stop reading this and hurry to the store! Go!!
Amazing Soy-Braised Short Ribs
Makes 6 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes: Cook Time: 2 1/2-3 hours
1 cup apple juice
1 cup mirin
1/2 cup sugar
1 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1 head of garlic, cloves smashed and peeled
1 bunch scallions
6 pounds bone-in beef short ribs
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into chunks
1 pound small potatoes, cut in half if large
1 teaspoon sesame oil
Black pepper to taste
1. Into a large pot with a tight fitting lid or a Dutch oven, mix together the juice, mirin, sugar, soy sauce, garlic and scallions. Arrange the short ribs, meaty-side down, the liquid and add enough water to cover the ribs. Turn the heat to medium-high and bring the liquid to a simmer. Then lower the heat to maintain a gentle simmer and partially cover the pot. Cook for about 2 hours or so, turning and rotating the ribs every now and then, until the meat is very tender. You can now continue with the rest of the recipe or let the contents of the pot cool and refrigerate for up to 3 days. This is what I did--most stews or braised foods only improve with age and chilling the mixture allows you to remove the excess fat.
2. Remove pot from fridge, spoon off the fat and discard. Remove the ribs from the pot and set them aside. Set the pot over low heat so that the jelled mixture becomes liquified again and strain out the scallions and garlic. Discard. Return the ribs to the pot and add the carrots and potatoes. Cook,uncovered for another 20-25 minutes until veggies are fork-tender. Stir in the sesame oil and season to taste with pepper. Serve immediately.
3. We loved this on it's own but it would be great over rice or pasta as well.
4. Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one week.
Note: Recipe adapted from Lucky Peach by Peter Meehan.