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Sunday, February 27, 2011

Korean BBQ Night

Korean BBQ Ribs
Adapted from Quick & Easy Korean Cooking by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee
2 Small onions, diced
10 Cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2/3 Cup soy sauce
1 Cup sugar
2 Cups pineapple juice
4 TBS sesame oil
5 LBS beef short ribs

Sauteed Spinach
Adapted from Quick & Easy Korean Cooking by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee
1 Package baby spinach
1TBS sesame oil
1 Clove garlic, minced
1 Green onion, sliced thin
1 TBS sesame seeds (plus more for serving)
Salt to taste

Spiced Poached Pears
Adapted from Quick & Easy Korean Cooking by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee
2 Bosc pears
10 Cups water
1 1-inch piece of fresh ginger, sliced thin
3 Strips of lemon zest
1 TBS whole black peppercorns
6 Whole cloves
1 TBS sugar
Vanilla ice cream for serving

We were in VT for the holiday weekend, and Saturday we stopped in a popular BBQ joint, Laney's. Naturally, we ordered the ribs with all the fixings (which were delicious). I had never attempted to make ribs before, but I was inspired.

I'm putting an Asian twist on these with a spicy-sweet marinade with tons of garlic, onion and pineapple juice from a Korean cookbook I recently purchased with some fabulous recipes. I found beautiful short ribs at the market, but you could also use this marinade for pork ribs too. And since I have the luxury of time, I'm cooking my ribs low and slow so they'll be extra tender. I'm making extra marinade, so I can turn it into a glaze for later. To go with my ribs I'm making sesame spinach, steamed rice and poached pears for a sweet finish.

Mix the half of the onion, garlic, soy sauce, sugar, juice and sesame oil in a bowl. Place ribs in a large shallow dish, and pour marinade over. Let sit in the fridge for several hours, or overnight. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Place ribs a roasting pan with a 1/2 cup water. Discarding marinade. Cover tightly with foil and cook for 2 hours. In the meantime bring the other half of the onions, garlic, soy sauce, pineapple juice and sesame oil to a boil in a sauce pan. Lower the heat and let reduce by half. Brush the sauce onto the meat after 2 hours, letting cook for another 20-30 minutes more uncovered.

Steam the spinach in 1/4 cup of simmering water for 4-5 minutes. Drain and rinse in cold water. Squeeze dry then toss in a bowl with the garlic, green onions, sesame seeds and sesame oil. Season with salt as needed. Serve along side of the short ribs, warm rice and plenty of sambal sauce.

For the pears. Simmer the water, ginger and lemon peel for 30 minutes. Strain the water, discarding the lemon and ginger. Add pears, cloves, peppercorns and sugar and bring to a boil. Reduce and let simmer for 15 minutes, or until soft. Serve warm or at room temperature with ice cream.

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The Hungry Yuppies, Annie and Rich, are a young couple from CT who are self-proclaimed foodies. Annie is the chef, and Rich is her willing taste tester. Juggling a full time job in the city wasn't going to get in the way of Annie's love for cooking. It's about eating well whether you have just 30 minutes on a Monday night, or all day on a rainy Sunday.