Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Pai Gwut - Steamed Spare Ribs

Winter is here with a vengeance and it makes me want to eat. The obvious - stews, roasts, toasts and mashed potato - are all featuring heavily but I also love chilli hot and ginger bright at the end of almost any kind of day. Robust flavours combined with interesting textures, both texture and flavour multilayered making every mouthful wonderful.

I was having a craving for black beans, was actually thinking beef and black bean, one of my favourite dishes when done well. Checked Steamy Kitchen and found, instead a recipe for spare ribs steamed with black beans. I know already that steaming pork is an unutterably fabulous thing to do so figured a new version could only be a bonus.

How right I was.

Though it was a Tuesday I fancied making a few dishes, the ribs were very quick to prep, and I already planned to steam the last of the cabbage I had in the fridge but even with rice I wanted one more dish. Aubergine because I love aubergine, thinking sea spiced but came across this on my own blog and the hit of chilli in it was the perfect addition for a seriously fab dinner. Man said he wasn't hungry when he got home, but still managed to eat the whole bowl full in no time.

Steamed Spareribs in Black Bean Sauce

You need to ask your butcher for spare ribs, maybe order them in advance if you are definitely planning this dish, otherwise you may be disappointed

Serves 4 with a couple of other dishes also great next day cold for lunch

500g (ish) pork spareribs
2 tablespoons black beans
1 tablespoon Chinese rice wine (or dry sherry)
2 teaspoons cornflour
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon sesame oil

1 teaspoon sugar

Cut the spareribs crosswise into 2-4cm sections or ask the butcher to do it for you. Combine the rest of the ingredients. Transfer spareribs and sauce into a shallow, heatproof pan and leave to marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes.

To cook in a steam oven set temperature to 100C and steam for 25 minutes.

Or set a steaming rack inside of your wok and fill with water almost up to height of rack. Turn the heat to high and when water is boiling, turn heat to medium-high. Set pan with spareribs on top of a steaming rack in wok. Steam on med-high heat for 18-20 minutes until ribs are no longer pink.

Serve with rice and one or two other dishes for perfect winter treat.

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