Chinese braised short ribs
Savory, sweet, and braised to perfection, this healthier version of the Chinese food classic will knock your socks off.
On that note, happy Chinese New Year! To celebrate this new year of the Dragon, I encourage you to embrace your innovative, brave, passionate, and self-assured side. Venture out from your default sodium laden Chinese food takeout and try something new and healthy. The flavorful and fulfilling homemade versions may amaze you.
I put a healthy spin on my mother’s famed Chinese braised short ribs and came up with the following recipe. Tasting just like the original, these ribs are finger licking good and are sure to become a family favorite.
The ribs take about 2 hours to cook, so get started early. It involves a simple dry-rub and then basting with the sauce. Serve alongside some Asian coleslaw (will post later this week) and be sure to grab a few napkins.
Chinese braised short ribs
1 rack of pork ribs
¼ cup chopped cilantro
¼ cup fresh green onions
1 T white sesame seeds
3 T Chinese 5 spice (Or you can make your own by blending together equal amounts of cloves, star anise, cinnamon, fennel seeds and white pepper.)
2 t sea salt
2 t cracked black pepper
¾ cup low-sodium soy sauce
½ cup white rice vinegar
2 T honey
1 large orange juiced
¼ cup ketchup
1 T almond butter
1 T sesame oil
4 cloves of garlic smashed
1” cube of fresh ginger smashed
1 Serrano pepper – cut in half and deseeded (optional)
Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil.
Pat the rack of ribs dry and sprinkle each side with the salt and pepper.
Cover the rack in the Chinese 5 spice powder until it is completely coated.
Place the ribs in the oven for 90 minutes.
After the ribs have been in the oven for about an hour, start on the sauce.
Combine all the sauce ingredients into a sauce pan together and simmer on low. Keep stirring to help the almond butter break up and the other ingredients melt together. Note: the garlic, ginger, and pepper are simply in the sauce to release flavor.
After the 90 minutes are up, paint the ribs with a generous coating of the sauce.
Place back in the oven (still at 300 degrees) for another 30 minutes.
At the end of this 30 minutes, take the ribs out and apply another generous coating of the sauce.
Set the oven to “broil.”
Once the oven is ready, place the ribs in for only 4 minutes. This will help the sauce form the famous candy-like coating on the ribs.
At the end of the 4 minutes, take the ribs out of the oven and cut each rib apart with a large knife.
Pull the garlic pieces, ginger, and Serrano pepper out of the sauce.
Pour the remaining sauce over the cut ribs.
Sprinkle with the cilantro, green onions, and sesame seeds.
Time: 2 hours 15 minutes