Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

I have wanted to cook cross-cut short ribs for a very long time. They always seemed so cute! And being able to enjoy short ribs without hours spent tending a dutch oven seemed too good to pass up, plus they’re a really great canvas for Asian-inspired flavors. David and I recently ate grilled short ribs at a Korean BBQ place in NYC, and they were off-puttingly crunchy (not in the cooked and crispy kind of way). They actually would have benefitted from a few hours in a dutch oven! This recipe gets around the too-crunchy problem with an acidic pineapple juice marinade that breaks down the meat before it ever meets heat. The finished result is short ribs with a pleasant bite- you won’t be able to resist eating them with your hands. And then licking your fingers.

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

To make them, get 1 pound of bone-in cross-cut short ribs. This amount serves 2 as main course, but cut each bone apart, and they would make a really great appetizer.

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

To mix up your marinade, stir together 1/2 cup of pineapple juice, 1/4 cup of soy sauce, 2 tablespoons of rice vinegar, 2 tablespoons of sesame oil, 2 tablespoons of toasted sesame seeds, 2 teaspoons of black pepper, 5 garlic cloves (grate into a paste using a microplane), and 1 small grated onion.

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

Add the marinade to your short ribs, cover them, and refrigerate them for 45 minutes. A loaf pan was perfect for holding my short ribs and marinade, but a plastic bag would work just as well.

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

Once marinated, cook your short ribs, either on a grill or on a sheet pan under your oven’s broiler. Cook the short ribs for about 5 minutes per side until they are charred in spots (or longer, if you prefer).

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

I served my short ribs with crisped fingerling potatoes– a really nice combination. You can find the recipe for those potatoes here.

Charred Cross-Cut Short Ribs

To serve, place your short ribs somewhat over your potatoes, drizzle them with spicy gochuchang sauce (or lightly with sriracha, if that’s more accessible to you), and garnish them with more toasted sesame seeds and some sliced scallion. Eat away!

This recipe is from Saveur.

Shopping list:

  • Cross-cut short ribs- 1 pound
  • Pineapple juice- 1/2 cup
  • Soy sauce- 1/4 cup
  • Rice vinegar- 2 tablespoons
  • Sesame oil- 2 tablespoons
  • Sesame seeds- 2 tablespoons+
  •  Black pepper- 2 teaspoons
  • Garlic cloves- 5 garlic cloves
  • Small onion- 1
  • Gochuchang
  • Scallion
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Home-Cured Lox!

Home-Cured Lox!

Repeat after me: In Ina We Trust. Years ago, I saw Ina Garten cure her own salmon on her TV show, and the idea has been politely biding its time in the back of my head ever since. I realized that hosting a mothers day brunch would be the perfect opportunity to finally try out the technique (and now my true motivation for inviting family over has been revealed). I’m not about to spend $60 and 3.5 days to risk serving raw fish to my entire family based on any bozo’s recipe, but Ina’s? I was in. And it was worth it! Somehow, my aunt hadn’t heard that I cured the fish myself, and I woke up to this wonderful email the next morning: “Subject– Lox; Message body– That was the best I’ve ever had. If it’s not a secret can you tell me where you got it?” Talk about a compliment!

Home-Cured Lox!

To make the lox, get 3 pounds of highest quality salmon you can find.

Home-Cured Lox!

In a bowl, mix together 1/2 cup kosher salt, 1/2 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons of crushed peppercorns, and 1 tablespoon of crushed fennel seeds.

Home-Cured Lox!

Cut the salmon so you have two equal-sized portions. Place one half, skin-side down, in a deep dish. Cover the salmon with a ton of fresh dill.

Home-Cured Lox!

Pour the salt-sugar mixture evenly over the dill.

Home-Cured Lox!

Top the salt-sugar mixture with the other half of the salmon, skin-side up.

Home-Cured Lox!

Cover the salmon with plastic wrap, and weight it down with something like a heavy cast-iron skillet.

Home-Cured Lox!

Put the salmon in the refrigerator for 2 to 3 days, and flip the salmon over every 12 hours. You’ll see it release a lot of juices over time.

Home-Cured Lox!

When you’re ready to serve your salmon, scrape the dill and salt-sugar mixture off. Use a long, sharp knife to very thinly slice the salmon cross-wise, on a diagonal. Arrange your salmon slices nicely in little piles, and serve it with bagels, cream cheese, tomatoes, onion, cucumber, and extra dill. The fish is so delicious and flavorful, and according to my aunt who knows these things, better than regular lox. A minimal amount of work for a major payoff…refrigerator “cooking” agrees with me!

Shopping list:

  • Fresh salmon- 3 pounds
  • Dill- lots
  • Kosher salt- 1/2 cup
  • Sugar- 1/2 cup
  • Peppercorns- 2 tablespoons
  • Fennel seeds- 1 tablespoon
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Tasty Taro Chips

Tasty Taro Chips

I am still trying to figure out how to manage my life in Philadelphia, so I sometimes get my groceries delivered from an online service. Frequently, I end up with far too much of something. Right now, it’s rhubarb. But a few weeks ago, it was taro. Whenever I buy those bags of assorted root vegetable chips, I always love the taro chips the most. They’re the white ones with almost purplish-looking squiggles. There are never enough taro chips in the bag, especially when my sister is around, because they’re her favorite too! I saw taro was available from my online grocer and thought I’d try making chips for my sister. But the taro was priced by the pound, confusingly cheap, and I ended up with too much…too much. Fortunately, the chips are delicious!!

Tasty Taro Chips

Get a bunch of taro. It’s pretty hairy and coconut-like on the outside.

Tasty Taro Chips

Peel the taro using a vegetable peeler. This is the most difficult part of the whole process, because the taro flesh is really slippery. Rinse the taro off.

Tasty Taro Chips

Since the taro are so slippery, I don’t recommend slicing them manually. Instead, use a food processor’s slicing attachment, adjusted to the thinnest setting, to slice the taro into chips. It’s super fast and easy and makes up for all that time spent peeling!

Tasty Taro Chips

The taro is so slippery because it is full of starch. To prevent the taro chips from sticking together during frying, let them soak for a bit in a large bowl of cold salt water. The salt water will flavor the taro chips and rinse off the excess starch.

Tasty Taro Chips

It’s important to dry the taro thoroughly before frying it. Spread the taro evenly between layers of paper towels to get the job done.

Tasty Taro Chips

Heat about 1 inch of oil in a cast iron skillet over medium/medium-high heat. Grapeseed oil is great because it isn’t prone to smoking. It’s expensive, but when you’re done frying, you can strain it and use it again and again. When a small bit of taro sizzles as soon as you drop it in the oil, you’re ready to start frying. Drop a large handful of the taro chips into the oil, and give them a stir to spread them out.

Tasty Taro Chips

When the taro chips have lightly browned around the edges, remove them with a mesh skimmer, and transfer them to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain. If you want to salt them more, now is the time to do it. The taro chips will crisp up as they cool.

Tasty Taro Chips

Continue frying all of your taro in batches. Once they are all drained and completely cool, you can store them in crimped brown paper bags for a few days- if they last that long. To help keep them crisp and fresh, you can put some dried rice grains in a fillable tea bag (or cheesecloth) and drop that in the bag of chips to suck up any moisture. A word of warning- you can’t eat just one chip, so definitely don’t try one before dinner! My sister and I both made that mistake 🙂

Shopping list:

  • Taro root
  • Oil
  • Salt
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