Steamed Black Bean Spare rib – RECIPE

steamed black bean spare ribs

May 23, 2014

in Food, Recipes

Dim sum is one of my most favourite meals. Piling into a crowded dim sum house on a Sunday morning with aunties pushing metal carts singing in melodic condescension the contents of the steamers they pimp is the best way to start the day. These carts are filled with delicious dumpling delights made with pork and shrimp, seafood wrapped in bean curd, various braised meats in deep rich aromatic sauces, as other carts display fried dumplings, golden and crunchy fried calamari or octopus and other battered fried goodies. One of my favourite dishes is the steamed black bean spareribs, and it will be yours too!

When I first got the recipe I thought that someone was jerking me around because the ingredient list seemed quite… short. Most Chinese recipes require an ingredient list that looks like a packing list like when you were sent to sleep away camp. To spite myself and prove that something was missing from the recipe, I made it… and it turned out delicious.

blackbeanribsIngredients:
2 pounds of rib tips (chopped into 1/2 inch pieces)
3 cloves of garlic (minced)
1 stalk green onion (finely chopped)
1 tablespoon red bell peppers (dice)
1 1/2 tablespoons fermented black beans (roughly chopped) or equivalent of store-bought black bean paste
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon oyster sauce
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
2 tablespoons cornstarch slurry – 1:1 of cornstarch and water


blackbeanribs-2
Rib tips are located in the lower end of a slab of baby back ribs – the flap of meat that is triangular in shape and contains the long bits of soft cartilage. If you can’t find them in your local grocery store – check out my list of Asian grocery stores. Or you can ask your butcher to slice the ribs into smaller riblets – that will work as well. Chop or have them cut into half-inch pieces. Soak in cold water in 10 mins and rinse a couple of times to get blood off the meat.

blackbeanribs-7
In a bowl, combine ribs, garlic, bell pepper, blackbeans, salt, sugar, osyter sauce, shaoxing wine, and cornstarch slurry and mix. Marinade for about 5-7 minutes – or as long as it takes for your steamer to get to a rolling boil and sprinkle green onions on top.

blackbeanribs-8
Line a heat-proof plate with the ribs in a single layer. Here’s the trick – if your rib tips are cut to 1/2 pieces, steam at a rolling boil for exactly SEVEN (7) minutes; not six, not eight, but seven. Why? I don’t know. It’s the sweet spot I’ve found for this recipe. Then again, you’ll have to use your own judgement; if you’re rib tips are cut a big bigger, add an extra minute to a minute and a half.

blackbeanribs-11This dish can be prepared in under 20 mins – painless and simple, serve this dish with rice.

blackbeanribs-4I tweaked this recipe from one that I initially got from a Chinese chef that incorporated a lot more kitchen swearing and cigarettes in the original version. This will be one of the many dim sum inspired recipes I plan to add to the blog in my Dim Sum Series of recipes. Any particular recipes you’d like to see? Let me know!

If you’ve never had dim sum before, here is my guide to some of the more popular dim sum dishes featured at Dim Sum houses around the city.

Steamed Black Bean Spare Ribs
Recipe Type: Dim Sum
Cuisine: Chinese
Author: Jason Lee
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 4
One of my favourite dim sum dishes; this dish can be prepared and eaten in under 20 mins. Painless and simple, this dish is served best with rice.
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds of rib tips (chopped into 1/2 inch pieces)
  • 3 cloves of garlic (minced)
  • 1 stalk green onion (finely chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon red bell peppers (dice)
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fermented black beans (roughly chopped) or equivalent of store-bought fermented black bean paste
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon oyster sauce
  • 1 1/2tablespoon Shaoxing wine
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch slurry – 1:1 of cornstarch and water
Instructions
  1. Rib tips are located in the lower end of a slab of baby back ribs – the flap of meat that is triangular in shape and contains the long bits of soft cartilage. Chop or have them cut into half inch pieces. Soak in cold water in 10 mins and rinse a couple of times to get blood off the meat.
  2. In a bowl, combine ribs, garlic, onion, bell pepper, blackbeans, salt, sugar, osyter sauce, shaoxing wine, and cornstarch slurry and mix. Marinade for about 5-7 minutes – or as long as it takes for your steamer to get to a rolling boil and sprinkle green onions on top.
  3. Line a heat-proof plate with the ribs in a single layer. Steam at a rolling boil for seven minutes. Use your own judgement; if you’re rib tips are cut a big bigger, add an extra minute to a minute and a half.
  4. Remain sexy

 

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