Asian Beef Short Ribs

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Meltingly tender Asian Beef Short Ribs, perfect for entertaining or a comforting family meal.

asian beef short ribs

As meat is very expensive where we live, I am always on the lookout for cheap cuts, and my recent discovery has been beef short ribs. There’s an old saying that, “the closer to the bone, the sweeter the meat”, and what is particularly marvellous about beef short ribs is not only the tender chunk of meat on the bone, but the lovely layer of fat in each piece which renders down during cooking to add delicious flavour to the sauce. In addition, the bones help to add a meaty richness to the dish, making beef short ribs pretty much the perfect cut of meat for braising or slow-cooking.

asian beef short ribs

I think you could use beef short ribs in almost any recipe which calls for a cut of meat which needs slow-cooking, such as brisket or chuck steak, but you will need to adjust the amount accordingly to allow for the weight of the bones.

I was unable to find the translation for “beef short ribs” into German, so it was rather amusing to discover that, not only did my butcher readily supply this cut, but that they had adopted the English name, seemingly because it was only the foreigners who were buying this cut!

asian beef short ribs

I love stews and braises with Asian flavourings, and whilst these Asian Beef Short Ribs are typically something I would make in winter, we love it at all times of the year. In fact, there’s something comforting about sitting down to a dish like this one during the week, especially if you might be working from home and can simply pop this into the oven to cook slowly during the day.

asian beef short ribs

Due to the rich and flavourful sauce which accompanies the meat, the best accompaniment is plain steamed Jasmine rice and either some steamed broccoli or Asian greens such as pak choy. Our children are going through an oddly surprising phase where they can’t get enough steamed broccoli (or other vegetables, for that matter!), so I am taking full advantage of the situation and serving them as a side dish wherever possible!

I think beef short ribs have a way of making stews and braises more elegant, so I think this recipe would be perfect for entertaining. In fact, I have tried making my Vietnamese Beef & Carrot Stew with beef short ribs, and it is a winner!

asian beef short ribs

Asian Beef Short Ribs

asian beef short ribs

5 from 3 reviews

  • Author: eatlittlebird.com
  • Prep Time: 15 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours
  • Total Time: 3 hours 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4-6

Ingredients

  • 1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1.5 kg (3.5 lb) beef short ribs
  • 2 large brown onions, thickly sliced
  • 4 cm (2 inch) piece of ginger, coarsely grated
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • 1-2 teaspoons Chinese five spice powder
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, plus more to taste
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar (light or dark)
  • 4 cups (1 litre) chicken stock
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 4 star anise
  • fresh coriander (cilantro), finely chopped
  • red chillies, finely sliced

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 160°C (320°F).
  2. Heat the oil in a large ovenproof pan (which has a fitted lid) over medium-high heat.
  3. Sear the short ribs until they are browned and golden on all sides. You may need to do this in batches. Remove the ribs to a large dish and set aside.
  4. Turn the heat down. Add the onions, ginger and garlic to the pan. Sauté for a few minutes until the onions have softened.
  5. Add the Chinese five spice powder and cook for about a minute.
  6. Add the soy sauce, hoisin sauce, sugar, chicken stock, cinnamon stick and star anise. Bring the mixture to a gentle simmer.
  7. Return the short ribs to the pan, along with any juices which have settled in the bowl.
  8. Cut a piece of baking or parchment paper to fit the pan, and cut a small hole in the centre to allow the steam to escape. Place the baking paper directly on top of the stew – this helps to keep everything submerged while it’s cooking and to prevent the loss of too much moisture.
  9. Cover the pan with a lid and place in the oven for about 2.5 hours, or until the meat is falling off the bone.
  10. Use a slotted spoon to gently remove the ribs to a large dish.
  11. Skim as much fat as possible from the sauce in the pan.
  12. Place the pan over medium-high heat on the stove and let the mixture simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until it has reduced and thickened slightly.
  13. Serve the ribs with steamed Jasmine rice and steamed broccoli (or other Asian greens), with the sauce drizzled over the meat.
  14. Garnish with coriander (cilantro) and red chillies.

Kitchen Notes

If your pan does not have a lid, simply cover with aluminium foil.

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 6
  • Calories: 575
  • Sugar: 12.4g
  • Sodium: 949.3mg
  • Fat: 29.3g
  • Carbohydrates: 23.1g
  • Fiber: 1.6g
  • Protein: 55.3g
  • Cholesterol: 201.9mg

Share your photos!

If you have used this recipe, I would love to hear how it turned out! Please leave a comment below and share your photos by tagging @eatlittlebird on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and using #eatlittlebird

17 Comments

  1. Dahn 25 August 2017

    wow these short ribs look great and that sauce looks so rich and delicious. I actually have quite a bit of chinese five spice powder and think I will give this a try

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 August 2017

      I sometimes bump up the Chinese five spice powder if I want it more heavily spiced. But if the children are eating this dish, I tend to use just 1-2 teaspoons.

      Reply
  2. Kim @ Three Olives Branch 25 August 2017

    These look amazing! And I love the idea of using these Asian flavors for a short rib. Perfect for the coming colder months!

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 August 2017

      Indeed! I will definitely be making this dish again throughout winter 🙂

      Reply
  3. Calleigh - TheForkBite 26 August 2017

    One of the things I love about slow cooking is the wealth of creative possibilities it offers. Cooking ingredients for prolonged periods of time at controlled temperatures can yield appealing textures & flavorful cut of meat like beef short ribs.

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 August 2017

      I absolutely agree! I think beef short ribs are my new favourite cut, too!

      Reply
  4. Mary 26 August 2017

    I love this flavor profile! Short ribs always feel like a treat, but the oven does most of the work! This looks great!

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 August 2017

      Yes, aside from the short prep time to sear the meat, the oven does most of the work here. I love this type of hands-off cooking 🙂

      Reply
  5. Patty @ Spoonabilities 26 August 2017

    I can’t event begin here! What a great recipe creation and your photos are excellent!

    Reply
  6. Cynthia 26 August 2017

    You found beef short ribs in Zürich?!? That’s fantastic! May I ask the address of your butcher? I have been looking for beef short ribs forever here and never found them. I even looked for them in France and Germany but no luck.
    Your recipe looks absolutely amazing! It’s still early in the morning but it makes me hungry and I wouldn’t mind having this for breakfast!

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 August 2017

      Hi Cynthia! Yes, I found beef short ribs at the butcher downstairs at Jelmoli. I first bought them there several years ago, but only started to buy it regularly during the last winter. They usually have it behind the counter, but if I plan on cooking them for guests, I will pre-order them, just in case.

      Reply
  7. Tabitha 11 September 2017

    Slow cooking really is a winner if you’re after strong, intense flavours and there’s so much creativity to be had with these asian flavour combinations! Looks like a great recipe whatever your time span!

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 September 2017

      Hi Tabitha,
      I agree! There’s something really delicious and comforting about using these Asian flavours in slow-cooking. I love it!

      Reply
  8. […] I have mentioned before, cooking with meat on the bone lends so much more flavour to a dish as it helps to add more […]

    Reply
  9. Kate Lim 26 September 2017

    Hi Thanh! This dish looks delicious and amazing! I would love to try this. However, I don’t have any cinnamon stick on hand. Can I bump it off? Or it will greatly affect the flavor? Thanks a lot! 🙂

    Reply
    • Eat, Little Bird 26 September 2017

      Hi Kate,
      The cinnamon lends a gentle spice to the dish, but I don’t think it will affect the flavour much if you leave it out 🙂 There’s also cinnamon in the Chinese five-spice powder, so I think you should be fine. Enjoy!

      Reply

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