I made Chinese braised spare ribs for a dinner party yesterday and it became one of the favourite dishes of the night.
Here is how I made it.
- 500 grams of spare ribs (about 1.1 lb), chopped to about 5-7 centimeters (2∼3 inches) in length
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 small ginger, washed, peeled and smashed
- 2 scallions split lengthwise and cut in 4 large chuncks
- 1 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup Chinese cooking wine, such as Shaoxing
- 10 Sichuan peppercorns
- 2 star anise
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 bay leaf
- salt to taste
- 12 midsize shiitake mushrooms, cut in half (wash and soak in warm water if fresh ones are not available)
- Soak the ribs in cold water for 5 minutes.
- Drain the water and pat the ribs dry with paper towel to remove any excess moisture.
- Heat the oil on high heat until it starts to smoke.
- Throw in ginger and scallions and let it sauté for 30 seconds.
- Add the ribs, in batches (be careful, it may splash) and fry until all sides are golden brown.
- Add soysauce, Chinese cooking wine and all the spices. Do not add salt yet. Make sure the ribs are submerged under the liquid.
- Let it come to a boil, then turn down the heat to medium low, add mushrooms and let it simmer for about 1-1.5 hours.
- When the meat almost fall off the bones, add salt as needed.
- Turn up the heat. Once it boils, it is ready to be served.
- The shiitake mushroom will soak up the flavour from the both and taste even better than the ribs.
- The broth is also good with the addition of potatoes, frozen tofu, napa cabbage or rice noodle.
Coming up next: Algarve, Portugal