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Tag Archives: beef


Garlic and ginger short ribs

I’ve started lifting weights again now that Jeff and I finally bought a small set of adjustable weights for the house. I’ve noticed that now that my body is constantly breaking down and rebuilding muscle that I am craving protein much more, which makes sense, but has led to some really unusual dinners lately.

I left the farmer’s market the other day with 4 huge short ribs, something I haven’t bought in over a year. I got home and suddenly thought to myself, “How did I talk myself into buying all this meat?! What am I gonna do with all of it?!” As you may know, Jeff and I are not vegetarians, but meat is never a requirement and is rarely the focus of the meals I make. So to come home with several pounds of beef ribs as an impulse buy kinda made me chuckle at myself a little.

Short rib close up

Well, I had them, might as well make them awesome right?

I started making a flavorful marinade by heating up some garlic, ginger, scallions, and red pepper flake in sesame oil to release their flavors.

Heating aromatics for marinade

Then I added soy sauce, rice vinegar, mirin, and lemon juice. That got poured over the short ribs and left to marinate for about an hour.

Marinating short ribsMarinated short ribs

I got a grill pan searing hot and sizzled the ribs on it, about 5 minutes on each side.

Sizzling short ribsGrill marked short ribs

When those came off, I added some cubed pineapple to the grill pan and drizzled the leftover marinade over them. When the pineapple was nice and hot, it was time to eat!

Short ribs with pineapple and quick pickles

I served it with jasmine rice and some of the spicy cucumber quick pickles that I made the other day.

This cut of meat has a lot of fat on it and several bones to work around, so there are really only a few good bites of meat on it. That’s why I bought 4 for just the 2 of us and it really was just the right amount. We ended up having about one and a half each and then Jeff took the last one to lunch the next day.

Garlic and ginger short ribs

Short ribs coated in a flavorful asian marinade.

Prep Time: 1 hour, 10 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour, 20 minutes

Yield: 2 to 4 servings


  • 4 medium-sized flanken-cut short ribs
  • 3 large cloves of garlic (sliced)
  • a 1 inch piece of ginger (grated)
  • 2 scallions (sliced)
  • a pinch of red pepper flake
  • 2 tbsp. mirin
  • 1 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • the juice of 1 lemon
  • sesame oil

Cooking Directions

  1. In a small pot heat garlic, ginger, scallions, and red pepper flake with sesame oil until fragrant.
  2. Add liquid ingredients and allow to heat up but not boil.
  3. Pour over short ribs in a sealable container, shake to coat and leave to marinate for 1 hour.
  4. Grill short ribs on a very hot grill pan coated in sesame oil for about 5 minutes on each side.

This was a delicious combination of flavors. The ribs were so garlicky and flavorful, and the pineapple was bursting with sweetness.

Do you like fruit in savory dishes?


Thai basil beef

I have no idea why this recipe is not already on this blog. I make this about once every other week because it’s easy and because it’s one of my husband’s favorite meals.

Thai basil beef over rice

Thai basil is more aggressive and slightly more bitter than it’s sweet Italian cousin. Its bright and springy flavor melts in and permeates the salty sauce and gets soaked up by the hot fluffy rice.

Thai basil bunchIt’s easy to tell Thai basil from sweet Italian basil. Its leaves have streaks of purple and the stems are often purple too. If you can’t find Thai basil, Italian basil will work but you should plan to use more of it.

I start by sauteing an onion and a bell pepper in sesame oil…

Thai basil beef peppers and onions

Then I make a space in the center to brown the flank steak…

Thai basil beef simmering

Then I add the basil and garlic…

Thai basil and chopped garlic

Thai basil beef adding basil

And the sauces…

Rice vinegar, fish sauce, sweet soy

And allow it to heat through.

Finished thai basil beef

Thai basil beef

Thinly sliced beef and veggies in a salty-sweet sauce infused with fresh Thai basil.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 2 to 2 1/2 servings


  • 2 portions flank steak
  • 1 large red bell pepper
  • 1 medium onion
  • 1 large bunch thai basil (about 10+ stems)
  • 2 large cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp. sweet soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup fish sauce
  • a pinch of chili garlic sauce
  • 2 tbsp. rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp. sesame oil
  • garnish with toasted sesame seeds

Cooking Directions

  1. Slice onions and bell pepper and saute with sesame oil.
  2. Slice flank steak thinly across the grain.
  3. Push vegetables to the outside of the pan and saute steak in center.
  4. Brown steak on both sides then mix in with vegetables.
  5. Add garlic, sauces, and thai basil torn into small pieces.
  6. Allow to heat through and serve over rice.

This is as good as what you would expect to get in a restaurant. I’ve made it with tofu too, and while it’s not the same dish without the beef juices melting into the sauce, it’s still really good.

Thai basil beef over rice

What’s your favorite dish to eat over rice?


Beef gyudon

So you’ve got a handle on making donburis now right? You know, make rice, put stuff on top of it? Yeah, that.

Time to graduate to the next level, which involves cooking by simmering some or all of the ingredients in a flavorful liquid. It’s easy, trust me.

Here’s a simple method to making the Japanese classic, gyudon (beef bowl.)

Like so many dinners I make, it started with sauteing an onion and a red pepper in sesame oil.

While those were softening up, I got to work on making a stock to simmer the beef in. I put one small piece of kombu seaweed in a pan with enough water to cover. Kombu is the seaweed you use to make dashi stock, and while I haven’t seen it at any of the major grocery stores, it’s pretty accessible in any health food store, asian market, and I think I’ve even seen it at Whole Foods before. It’s ok if you don’t wanna track it down though, I’ve found that a small handful of dulse works pretty well and is more widely available, but you can do without seaweed entirely and still make a tasty dish.

I let that come up to a simmer for a few minutes before removing it. Don’t ever boil kombu, it makes the broth really slimy if it gets too hot. Just gently steep it like you’re making tea.

Next, I flavored it with miso.  This “red” miso, as opposed to your standard “white” or “mellow” miso, is just what I happened to have on hand.  Any kind you can get your hands on is fine.

I added a big dollop like this…

…and whisked it into the hot liquid.

It’s like a lava lamp watching the miso roil away in the hot broth.

At that point I took some strips of flank steak that had been marinating for a few hours in soy sauce, mirin, and rice vinegar, and swirled them around in the broth to partially cook.

This is the fun part. Turn up the heat on both pans to medium high. As the beef gets cooked through, start transferring it to the veggie pan along with a ladle-full of the broth. As the pan of broth boils away getting more and more concentrated, your veggies are soaking up their own broth and quickly about to start burning on the pan. Add another ladle of broth and wait for the meat and veggies to soak it all up before doing it again. When everything is cooked through and coated in a sweet glaze made by the concentrated broth, cut the heat and serve it up!

You can serve this over sushi rice or plain white rice. Don’t forget to spoon over some more of the delicious cooking liquid and garnish with sesame seeds!

Whatever you do, don’t throw out the remaining broth. It makes a delicious soup base to add mushrooms, scallions, and noodles to. I’ve got some in my freezer right now saved up for a rainy day.

This was one of those dishes that had us saying “Mmmm” the whole time we were eating it. Definitely one for the “make over and over again” file!

Beef gyudon

A simple take on a Japanese classic. Thinly sliced beef in a rich sauce with peppers and onions.

Prep Time: 10 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 25 minutes

Yield: 2 servings


  • 2 portions flank steak (sliced thinly)
  • 1 small red bell pepper
  • 1 small onion
  • 1 medium piece kombu seaweed (optional)
  • 2 tbsp. miso
  • 1 tbsp. each soy sauce, rice vinegar, and mirin
  • sesame oil for sauteing

Cooking Directions

  1. Let steak marinate in soy sauce, mirin, and rice vinegar.
  2. Fill a pan 1/2 way up with water and slowly heat kombu in it. Remove kombu before it boils.
  3. Saute peppers and onions in a separate pan until starting to soften.
  4. Add steak to seaweed water along with marinade and allow to cook through.
  5. Add steak to peppers and onions along with some of the liquid.
  6. As the liquid gets soaked up, add more several times until a rich sauce is formed.
  7. Serve over rice and top with toasted sesame seeds if desired.