In my attempt to diversify from consuming mostly muscle meat, I’ve picked up a bag of beef short ribs from the butcher. They’ve turned into a Southeast Asian inspired, fall-of-the bone tray of goodness that would satisfy even the most epicurious souls.
Beef short ribs are larger and usually more tender or meatier than the pork ribs and are much more nutritious. Cooking with bones, connective tissue, skin and fatty bits that you will find in short ribs is a great way to get the benefits of such nutrients as glycine – amino-acid – which is missing when you just eat lean cuts of meat all the time. Glycine is fantastic for our wellbeing, promoting healthy gut, skin, hair and longevity – especially when you’ve slow-cooked the meat parts to get all the gelatine and nutrients out of the bones and ligaments. Plus, you’ll be getting a great meal for half the cost.
This recipe is very easy however it does require you to keep an eye on the time and turn the ribs over a few times. That’s as hard as it’s going to get!
Cook’s notes: You can make this recipe in a slow-cooker/pressure cooker but I still recommend transferring the whole batch to a tray at the end and roasting uncovered for 30 minutes to get the meat browned. If you can’t find Chinese five-spice powder, you can replace it with a star anise, a little cinnamon, a clove and some fennel seeds. You can easily make this without lemongrass if you can’t find any.
- 1.5 kg / 3.3 lb beef short ribs cut into 5-6 pieces (ask your butcher)
- 5 lemongrass stalks
- medium knob of fresh ginger, sliced (8-9 slices)
- 4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
- 1 medium brown onion, sliced
- peel of 1 large orange
- juice of 1 large orange
- juice of ½ lime
- 2 tablespoons fish sauce
- ½ tablespoons sesame oil
- 3 tablespoons tamari sauce (or coconut aminos)
- generous pinch of sea salt
- generous pinch of chilli flakes (omit for AIP)
- generous pinch of black pepper
- ½ teaspoon of Chinese five-spice powder
- 1½ cup of water
- You will also need foil and large oven tray
- ½ lime juice to drizzle at the end
- 1 head of broccoli, broken into florets and steamed or boiled (or other Asian greens)
- Fresh coriander for garnish
- Preheat oven to 200 C / 395 F.
- Place the ribs in a large deep oven try and scatter lemongrass, orange peel, garlic, ginger and onion around. Squeeze orange and lime juice over the ribs and the rest of ingredients. Combine fish sauce, sesame oil and tamari sauce and pour over the ribs. Sprinkle with sea salt, pepper, chilli and Chinese five-spice powder. Then pour the water over the top of everything.
- Cover the tray tightly with foil and place in the oven for 30 minutes at 200 C / 395 F. Remove the tray and gently fold the foil to turn the ribs over. Cover back with foil and place back in the oven for another 20 minutes at 200°C.
- Then reduce the oven to 170 C / 335 F and cook the ribs for 2 hours, turning over half way.
- Finally, remove the tray from the oven and uncover the foil. Cut the meat off the bone where it starts to come away (it will). Turn the heat back up to 200C / 395 F, and cook the ribs exposed for a further 20 minutes.
- Finally steam or boil some Asian greens or broccoli and serve with the beef drizzled with extra lime juice. Sprinkle fresh coriander over the top if you like.