Let’s Cook! Spicy Korean Ribs

June 20, 2010

A few weeks ago the announcement that South Korea would be one of the new additions to this years Epcot Food & Wine Festival caused quite a stir around the Eating and Drinking Around the World kitchens – we celebrated by (how else?) making a few Korean dishes (okay, there were cocktails as well…).

We shared the Korean-inspired burgers from the Goddess Jaden Hair (Let’s Cook! Korean BBQ-Style Burgers), and now it’s time for another dish – Spicy Pork Ribs.

And yes, these are the same ribs made for the non-traditional Thanksgiving meal shown in Happy (not) Turkey Day… and promised “we’ll share the recipe shortly”…. so if you hadn’t figured out yet the Eating and Drinking Around the World definition of the word “shortly”… well now you know.

This recipe comes from yet another female cook, Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee, and her book “eating korean”. This is what I like to call a great “reading” cookbook, as it contains not just recipes, much much of the history and backstory behind them, and the author’s life as well.

So let’s get down to it….

Spicy Korean Back Ribs aka Dwaeji Galbi (adapted from “eating korean” by Cecilia Hae-Jin Lee)

5 Lbs Pork Back Ribs (normally I’m a Spare Rib fan, I think they have more flavor, but for this dish the meatier and more tender backs works well, especially for the “fast cook” method)

1” piece ginger root, peeled and finely minced

1 garlic clove, finely minced

1 cup Korean Chili Paste (this is the one thing you really must have for lots of Korean recipes – you may see it called Hot Pepper Paste or Chili Pepper Paste – you likely won’t find this in your local market, but any Asian grocery will have tons of it… and I’m sure you can find easily online)

1/2 cup Korean Malt Syrup (mool yut, similar to corn syrup)

1/2 cup granulated Sugar

2 Tbl Soy Sauce

3 Tbl Sesame Oil

1 Tsp Black Pepper

1 Tsp to 1 Tbl Hot Pepper Flakes or Cayenne Pepper (optional)

1) Separate the meat into individual ribs and put into a big zip-lock bag.

2) Combine all the remaining ingredients – the paste is fairly spicy for most tastes, but we here like it extra hot, so we add pepper flakes as well… use your own judgement on this – we will not be held responsible for any spice-related injuries. Add the marinade to the bag, zip closed and lovingly massage the good stuff into the ribs. Stick in the fridge for as long as you have… overnight is preferred, but if only for a couple of hours, so be it…

3) Allow to come to room temperature and cook the ribs…

Okay, guess we need to be a bit more specific about that…

The original recipe says to: “Grill the ribs over medium-high heat until done, about 5 to 6 minutes per side”. It’s against my religion to do pretty much anything but “low-and-slow” on ribs –

Preparing the Big Green Egg for indirect cooking…

Drip pan and grill in place…

so I cooked on low indirect heat (about 275-300 degrees) for about 3 or 4 hours, turning and rearranging whenever the mood struck…

Ribs going on the Egg…

Meat done… mmmm… meat good…

As an experiment, I did take a few and cooked quickly under the broiler, and I will admit they were pretty good, but not quite as tender as the slow-cooked ones… you probably couldn’t get away with this on spares, but works okay on the back ribs.

In any case, you do need to watch carefully as with the sugar and syrup in the marinade, these puppies can burn easily, even when cooked indirect…

So there you have it, another good dish to try, and dream of what’s to come during Food and Wine…

I hope you try this one, and let us know what you think!

Now back to the kitchen… if you’ve enjoyed this recipe, please be sure to “like” and “share“!

One Response to “Let’s Cook! Spicy Korean Ribs”

  1. marissa Says:

    looks delish Andy! Maybe we’ll give this recipe a shot since it’s grill season in VA!


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