As the weather finally starts to cool down a bit, we can look forward to spending time in the kitchen again and working on some comfort foods. This Stuffed Cabbage dish is a great project to tackle this weekend. Like Hambagu and Corn Potage, this read more
Tis the season to treat yourself and loved ones to a special occasion meal. These Braised Short Ribs look so impressive and are so full of rich, wintry flavors-like oranges and a sweet hoisin sauce- that your guests will have no idea they took only 20 minutes of hands on time. They taste even better the next day, making them ideal for a carefree dinner party. Beef is a bit pricey these days, but it’s the holidays, so let’s splurge together!
Secrets to a Great Braise
Braising is an easy way to coax tender flavor from tougher cuts of meat, but there are some secrets to creating a really great braise:
- using a heavy pot or dutch oven that maintains a steady heat
- getting a good sear on all sides of the meat; don’t overcrowd the pan and don’t rush this step
- deglazing the pan to get all those yummy browned bits into the sauce
- using deeply flavorful liquids to create a rich sauce
- adding aromatics like ginger, orange zest, cinnamon sticks really amps up the flavor
Sear the Short Ribs
I start making braised short ribs by getting a really good sear on all sides of the short ribs. A proper sear adds so much flavor, both to the meat itself and the sauce. Plus it makes the meat an attractive bronzed color. Sear the ribs in batches. Too many at once causes steam that prevents the nice brown crust we are looking for.
When all the ribs are seared, keep them in a bowl and heat more oil in the same pot. Now we sauté all the aromatics to make an umami rich sauce for the short ribs.
And at this point, all the hands on work is done, and we let time and low heat work their magic. After about an hour and a half, the meat should be fork tender. If not let it go for another 15-20 minutes. The sauce will be dark and glossy and so fragrant! I like to add some fresh orange zest curls as a garnish.
This lusty dish deserves some equally sexy costars:
- My Ginger Saketinis are the perfect adult beverage pairing
- Mushroom Dumplings for a fun starter
- Miso Maple Squash is a wonderfully seasonal side
- Vanilla Poached Fruit rounds out this stress free, largely make ahead, meal
Give these delectable Braised Short Ribs a try and let me know what you think. Rate and leave a comment, and tag us in your holiday feasts @funkyasiankitchen, we love hearing from you!
- 3 pounds boneless beef short ribs (also known as boneless flanken short ribs or boneless chuck short ribs)
- 3 Tablespoons neutral oil
- 1 large onion, sliced
- 2 inch piece of ginger, sliced
- 2 dried arbol chiles
- 6 cloves garlic, smashed
- 1 Cinnamon stick
- 2 star anise
- ½ cup hoisin sauce
- ½ cup ketchup
- ½ cup oyster sauce
- 1 cup orange juice
- 1 cup water
- ½ cup mirin
- 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 Tablespoon light brown sugar
- Trim the beef of any thick exterior fat and gristle. Cut the beef into 3-4 pieces. Set aside.
- Heat a dutch oven or deep heavy skillet over medium high heat for several minutes. Add 1 Tablespoon of oil and swirl to coat the pot.
- Add half of the beef to the pan, making sure the beef pieces do not touch and you are not crowding the pan.
- Cook the beef for 1-2 minutes untouched so that there is a nice dark brown sear. Turn the beef onto another side and again cook for 1-2 minutes. Repeat this for at least 1-2 more sides making sure each side has a good dark crust. Do not rush.
- Set the beef aside in a bowl and repeat with the remaining beef.
- Add the final tablespoon of oil to the pot and add the onions, ginger, garlic cloves, and chiles. Saute for 1 minute and then add the cinnamon stick and star anise. Continue cooking for another minute.
- Peel the zest off of the orange, excluding as much of the bitter white pith as possible.
- Wrap the onion and garlic spice mixture along with the orange peel in a piece of cheesecloth about 12” x 16” and tie it to close.
- Put the beef back into the pan along with any accumulated juices and put the cheesecloth pouch on top.
- Add the sauce and water to the pot. Bring the sauce to a simmer over medium high heat and stir to blend all of the sauce ingredients, scraping the bottom to get all of the browned bits.
- Then cover the pot with a lid and lower the heat to medium low.
- Cook for 1 ½ hours, stirring occasionally. Use a fork to check the beef. It should slide into the beef easily. If not, then cook for an additional 15-20 minutes.
- Transfer the meat to a large platter. Turn the heat up to medium high and reduce the sauce for 5-10 minutes until it is thick and syrupy. Pour the sauce over the meat.
- Serve immediately.
*Like all braised dishes, this beef is even better on the second day. Leftovers keep in the fridge for several days. You can also freeze leftovers. Defrost in the fridge overnight and then warm over medium heat for 8-10 minutes.
Keywords: beef, short ribs, hoisin sauce, holiday meals, braise
Sukiyaki is a classic cold weather dish in Japan. It’s just the thing to get you through the last frigid days. My Sukiyaki Noodles take inspiration from that famous soy flavored hot pot. They are chockful of veggies, proteins, and noodles simmered in a luscious savory sauce. For my Sukiyaki Noodles, I use “miracle noodles”, or shirataki. These noodles, which are made from konjac yam, have zero calories AND are practically carb free, while still being totally yummy with a fun, bouncy texture. As an added bonus, they are gluten free, so this dish is great for anyone with gluten sensitivities.
One thing I love about Sukiyaki Noodles is their very Asian approach to meat. Meat is used as a flavoring ingredient, rather than the center of the meal. The one pound of beef used in this recipe serves up to 6 people, which is way more in line with recommended serving sizes of red meat, than the standard American way of serving an enormous steak per person. It is also an economical way to serve beef without it looking like you’re on a budget. Veggies also have a central role here: with burdock root, watercress, and two kinds of mushrooms providing great texture and earthy flavor. One bite and I know you will come to love this comforting one dish meal.
Sukiyaki Noodles follow a hybrid Japanese cooking technique of stir fry-braise, where items are first quickly stir-fried with a little oil to sear and concentrate flavors and then braised for a short time to allow flavors to meld. I like to have everything prepped and ready to go, so that I don’t forget to add any ingredients and I can just concentrate on the cooking.
Prep Your Ingredients
The first thing you need to do is rinse the noodles. If you haven’t tried Shirataki noodles before, you may be surprised by the slightly fishy odor. Don’t be alarmed. It’s normal and does lessen when you rinse it. And when it’s cooked, you won’t notice it at all, trust me.
Then move on to the rest of the prep: clean the mushrooms, slice the burdock, and prep the beef…once you have everything prepped the dish comes together quickly. Mushrooms are an excellent addition to these noodles. Feel free to experiment with different kinds. Here we are using shimeji and enoki. Both come in small packages with growing medium at the base, which needs to be cut off. Then break them into small manageable clumps before adding them to the pan.
Burdock root is an earthy root vegetable that is common in traditional Japanese cusine. Look for firm fresh roots that are not shriveled or too dark. It needs to be scrubbed free of soil with a clean vegetable brush or sponge and well rinsed. Make sure to have a bowl of water to keep the cut burdock. Burdock oxidizes quickly in air. Burdock root is usually sold with several in the pack. If you have some left over, try this quick stir-fry called Kinpira Gobo.
Japan has excellent beef that is well marbled with fat for exceptional flavor. Ribeye is a great stand in. I usually buy it pre-shaved (in fact I can find it at both Trader Joes and Costo), but if you are slicing the ribeye yourself then freeze it first for about a half hour-this makes it much easier to get really thin slices. (It is also helpful to have a properly sharpened knife. Subscribe and get a free how-to on professionally sharpening knives!)
Let’s Get Cooking!
Once all your ingredients are prepped, making sukiyaki noodles is a snap! Start by heating the oil in a large pan with a lid. Then ingredients get added one at a time. By adding each ingredient separately, nothing gets overcooked and you ensure a vibrant beautiful dish.
Serving Sukiyaki Noodles
Now it’s time to and serve! You can either serve it family style directly from the pan and let everyone dig in, or you can serve it in individual bowls with a nice sprinkle of the scallion garnish. Make sure everyone gets some of the delicious sauce.
Please rate the recipe, and scroll down to leave a comment. Of course, if you post a picture of your beautiful Sukiyaki Noodles, we want to see! Tag us in your insta pics @funkyasiankitchen; show us the goods!Print
- 1 pound shaved (or very thinly sliced) rib eye steak
- 2 packages of shirataki noodles (16 oz. each)
- 3 tablespoon neutral oil
- A large onion, peeled, halved and cut into 1/4” slices
- 1 burdock root (approximately 8 ounces)
- 1 ½ cup mirin
- ¾ cup soy sauce*
- 1 package hon-shimeji mushrooms (you can also use shiitake or oyster mushrooms)
- medium bunch watercress
- 1 package enoki mushrooms
- 4 scallions, cut on the bias
- If your beef is not already sliced, you will need to prepare it first. Freeze the rib eye steak for 20-30 mins. until slightly firm but not frozen solid. (This will make the steak easier to cut).
- Cut off any thick pieces of fat, but leave a little fat or you will lose a lot of the flavor. Cut it in half lengthwise and then across the grain as thinly as possible. Set aside.
- Drain the shirataki noodles in a colander and rinse with running water. Set aside.
- Scrub the burdock root with a clean kitchen sponge and rinse off under running water. Trim the dried ends off and discard. Fill a bowl with water. Cut the burdock root on the diagonal in thin ¼ “ pieces. Put the burdock into the bowl of water to stop the oxidation, which will turn it brown.
- Take the fish cake out of the package and pull it off of the wooden board. Cut the fish cake into ¼” slices. Set aside.
- Open the package of enoki and cut off the bottom 1/2 inch growing medium. Break apart the enoki mushrooms into small manageable clumps and set aside.
- Open the package of shimeji mushrooms and break apart into small clumps and cut off the growing medium at the bottom. Set aside.
- Wash the watercress well, drain, and roughly chop into 2 “ pieces. Set aside.
- Heat a large saute pan (I used a 12” deep cast iron enameled skillet with a dome lid) over medium high heat, add the oil and swirl it around to coat the pan. Add the onions and saute, stirring occasionally, until soft and lightly caramelized, about 5 minutes.
- Add the burdock root and continue stir frying for another 5 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Add the soy sauce and mirin. Stir to mix. Pour the sauce over the burdock and onions.
- Put the shirataki noodles on top of the onion mixture and push down a little on the noodles to submerge them in the sauce.
- Cover with a lid, lower the heat to medium, and cook for 10 minutes. Open the lid once in a while and stir/flip the noodles to fully coat the noodles in the sauce as it cooks.
- Remove the lid and add the shimeji mushrooms and the fish cake. Cover again and cook for 1 minute.
- Add the beef and using chopsticks or tongs, separate and peel apart the beef, so it does not cook in one big clump. Cook with the lid off for about 1 minute until the beef is medium rare.
- Add the watercress and enoki and again cover the pan for 1 minute.
- Top with the scallions and serve.
- You can either serve this in the pan, like a hot pot, and have everyone dig into it or you can portion the noodles into 4-6 bowls, topping each evenly with the meat and the veggies. Divide up any sauce. Serve immediately.
*To keep this dish gluten-free, be sure to choose a soy sauce without any wheat.
* If you’re using meat that you have cut by hand, it will naturally be thicker than machine cut shaved beef. In that case, cook the beef for a minute or two longer to desired doneness.
Keywords: sukiyaki, noodles, gluten free