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This year’s holiday countdown has overlapped with the countdown to my wedding in early December. It’s a little over thirty days away and I can’t believe it’s already here, much like how I feel at the end of every year when it’s almost time to celebrate Thanksgiving!
Korean braised short ribs (or galbi jjim) are what I think of when I think of cozy, cold weather dishes for celebrations. This is not an everyday dish but something you serve during the holidays or a special occasion like lunar new year, Chuseok, or a birthday.
And speaking of special occasions, a version of this dish was actually served at my parents’ wedding in Korea. My aunt cooked it for the reception for everyone to enjoy and my dad still says it was the best galbi jjim he ever had.
When I have gatherings at my home, I like to offer both red and white wine so that people can drink whatever they prefer. These short ribs are delicious with Sonoma-Cutrer’s 2015 Russian River Valley Pinot Noir and their 2014 Les Pierres Chardonnay. The pinot noir’s bright, velvety finish and aromas of cranberry, red cherry, and plum pair perfectly with the richness of the ribs. The chardonnay’s bright citrus aromas and flavors cut through the richness of the beef and the hints of roasted nuts, spice, and mineral notes complement it perfectly. Both of these wines were easy to order off of Sonoma-Cutrer’s website.
These beef short ribs simmer in a salty sweet mixture, mirin, sugar, garlic, ginger, onion, and apple for a few hours until tender and richly flavored. Carrots, daikon, and mushrooms are added for the last thirty minutes and the stew is ready when the vegetables are tender.
I recommend cooking the ribs a day or two before serving- braised dishes always seem better the next day. It also gives you a chance to defat the sauce by letting it cool completely and simply scooping the fat off the top. I don’t mind fat in sauces but in this case the ribs are super rich and make the sauce a bit too greasy if you don’t remove the fat.
- 3 pounds of short ribs
- ¾ cup of soy sauce
- ¼ cup mirin
- ¼ cup sugar
- 1 small onion, chopped into big pieces
- 1 small apple, peeled and chopped
- 10 cloves of garlic, peeled
- 3 inch piece of ginger, peeled
- 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into 2 inch large chunks
- 2 cups of daikon radish cut into 2 inch large chunks
- 8 oz fresh shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and halved if large
- Soak ribs in cold water for about 30 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
- Meanwhile, take the rest of the ingredients and blend it in a blender or food processor until smooth.
- Put the mixture in a large dutch oven, add 3 cups of water and bring to a boil.
- Add the ribs and lower to a simmer and cover with a lid for at least two hours until the ribs are tender.
- Add carrots, daikon, and mushrooms and simmer for another 30 minutes.
- Skim the fat off the top, or use a fat separator for the sauce. You can also cool and store in the fridge overnight and remove the fat off the top. Reheat over low heat.
- Serve with steamed white rice and kimchi.