Saturday, December 1, 2012

LA inspiration: asian short ribs

Quick note to my vegetarian friends, I'll get back to you later this week.  Working on a kale salad and some other recipes that will not freak you out.  Now, for my omnivore friends let's talk slow cooked beef.  For years I'd have to ask the butcher what was the best cut of beef for braised, roasted, and slow cooked dishes.  I could never keep them straight.  So I don't even bother wracking my cluttered brain, I just buy beef short ribs (usually boneless, but bone-in are of course fine if not better), brown them and then slow cook them in a covered Dutch oven either on the stove or in the oven.  Never fails.  Like butter.  So tender.  So flavorful.  Done.  No more queries to the butcher.

Years ago I found a bottled red chili pepper sauce at Williams-Sonoma and occasionally splurged on a bottle for cooking up a savory and spicy batch of Asian flavored beef short ribs with carrots and onions.    I was newly inspired to make them at home from scratch after my visit to see Kelly in LA.  She took me straight from LAX at midnight my time to a (very) late dinner at Chego!.  A whole in the wall strip mall spot that she found on Yelp.  Chego! (yep, there's an exclamation point there) is "chillax peasant food for the soul".  Or you could say they mix up some pretty amazing bowls with mainly rice bases and then just fascinating layers of flavor combinations.  And you have to start with Ooey gooey fries  which are beer battered fries topped with sour cream sambal, monterey jack and cheddar cheeses, cotija, cilantro and pickled garlic.  Oh yeah, they are worth it.  Especially after midnight.  Kelly had the sour cream hen house:  grilled chicken bowl with fried egg, Chinese broccoli, sour cream sambal, Thai basil, sesame and red jalepeno.  I had the Leafy T:  fried chili garlic tofu rice, fried egg (yes indeedy, I gave that to Kelly), water spinach, Chinese broccoli and fried shallots.  Find it if you're ever out in Los Angeles.  What I'm getting to, is everything is apparently better with some sour cream and served "bowl style".  So this time when I slow cooked my Asian style beef ribs, I served them with sour cream, sriracha, scallions and cilantro.  If I had Thai basil that would have been awesome too.  If you get inspired by restaurant food, take a photo, take a menu and bring some of their genius ideas into your cooking at home.  Or, wait for me and I'll try to do it for you.  Fair warning:  I don't eat out very often.


Ooey Gooey Fries at Chego!

seating at benches along a mirrored wall for this awkward selfie (it was about one in the morning)
note how there is nothing awkward about Kelly, she is a professional

Leafy T Bowl at Chego!

It's that time of year.  Slow roast some meat in your oven and make your house smell savory and warm.  Splurge on some good short ribs.  You'll thank me later.

Asian-Style Beef Short Ribs

3 to 4 pounds boneless beef short ribs
flour
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 T olive oil
one white or yellow onion, sliced vertically
5 cloves garlic, minced
2 C chicken broth or stock
1/4 C lower sodium soy sauce (Tamari)
1/4 C mirin (rice wine)
1 tsp chili garlic sauce or sriracha
1 T brown sugar
2 tsp minced fresh ginger or 1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 C chopped scallions (white and tender green parts)
sour cream
sriracha sauce
cilantro

Preheat oven to 300 degrees*.  Sprinkle ribs with flour, salt and pepper.  Heat olive oil in dutch oven over medium high heat and brown the short ribs on all sides (only takes a couple of minutes per side).  Add onion and garlic to pan and stir for a minute.  Pour in broth and stir in soy sauce, miring, sriracha, brown sugar and ginger.  Bring to a boil.  Cover pan and slow cook in oven for at least 3 hours until meat shreds easily with a fork.  Remove from oven, shred meat and serve over brown rice, if desired and top with sour cream, scallions, sriracha and cilantro.

*These could easily be made in a crock pot.  Brown your short ribs in a deep pan on the stove and then place them in your crockpot with all the ingredients through the ginger.  Cover and cook as directed (surely your crock pot came with a recipe for something similar with beef).  I am guessing 6-8 hours on low.  That is a guess!

Serves 4-6

I really need to stop being so hungry, that I forget to take pictures.  I have my blogger photo situation resolved, but no short ribs to show.  Owe you another one.


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