Some nights ago, I made dinner for my parents and they really liked it (for the first time). Haha… Well, I’ve made stuff for them before but it always seemed like I messed up too much. But this time turned out so well, I decided it’s good to post. I’ll share the recipe too, it might be somewhat difficult if you’re not used to tasting. Well, most Vietnamese foods, you have to make sure it’s not too salty (that’s my problem, most of the time) or too sweet.
Caramelized Pork Ribs
- 3 lbs. pork ribs
- 4 tsp. ground pepper
- 1/3 cup fish sauce or to taste
- 1/3 cup black soy sauce or to taste
- 2 shallots (small red onions)
- half a bulb of garlic minced (and skinned, duh!)
- 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 stalks of scallions (green onions)
- 1 tsp. sesame oil
- 1 tbsp. rice wine
- Marinate the ribs in fish sauce, black soy sauce, minced shallots, garlic, and pepper. Refrigerate 30 minutes to 1 hour.
- In a skillet or deep pan and make sure to equip it with a lid to shield yourself from burning flecks of oil doom!! It hurts like a bizatch… Now turn the heat on high and wait for it to heat it and then add the oil. I personally like olive oil because it is aromatic and it’s healthier than most oils. Seseme oil works too, it just can’t be overheated or it will lose that flavor and smell. Anyway, we take our fairy dust — just kidding! I mean sugar… and we toss that in there with the oil. Wait for it to caramelize, don’t turn your head away either! Sugar is easy to burn, man. As soon as it turns brown, you toss those ribs in even the marinade. But don’t forget to equip your shield! Although your one arm extending out might have to be sacrificed.
- For extra spice, you can toss in some cut up pieces of chili pepper. I use Thai chili for effective mouth-burning. I usually cut them vertically or cut off the top only if I’m serving for people who don’t like super spicy.
- Anyway, right now you should be tossing the porks around for 3 minutes or something or until the outside it turning brown. You get your shield and cover the top of the pan, turn the heat down to med-low and let the ribs simmer for 20 minutes.
- Open it occasionally to swish it around and make sure the sauce is coating the ribs evenly. Throw in a splash of rice wine, scallions and seseme oil.
- Mix it around and turn the heat back to high heat and stir. The sauce will begin to thicken and stick to the meat. When there is little sauce left, turn off the heat.
- To avoid eating the oil, carefully tilt the pan high and separate the meat, the oil should flow down and away easily. If you did it right, the sauce should all ready stick to the ribs leaving only the oil. Or if you like oil (eh… ew..) then you can keep it…
If the fish sauce and the soy sauce seems too much, I’d be careful to poor in more rice wine or just water to dilute it and forget about thickening the sauce all the way. Leaving it somewhat saucy is good too. The rice wine I used wasn’t Chinese, it was Japanese Michiu, which I think has a stronger smell. If you’re not old enough like me, you can get your dad to buy it for you! Yay!
This is the green vegetable soup. It’s totally Vietnamese and hella good for you because that’s why we live so damn long. Anyway…
I don’t remember what that vegetable is! D: …. Well, spinach works too. It is very easy.
- Spinach, cleaned and cut into small pieces
- 8 pieces of shrimp, cleaned and de-veined.
- 1 green onion, cut into small pieces
- couple pieces of cilantro also cut into small pieces
- fish sauce
Grab a big pot and fill it with water, depending on how many people are eating, if it is 3 people, probably a big bowl and a half of water. Add 1 tsp salt and 2 tsp sugar or if you like organic stuff like me, than use about 2/3 teaspoon of agave syrup. When it boils, throw in the shrimp and take out the foam as it forms on the top of the water. Toss in the green onion and then the spinach. As it boils, immediately turn off the heat and put in about 1 tbsp of fish sauce and sprinkle pepper on top.
Eat with rice. I like sticky white rice, but I’m interested to try brown rice since it’s more healthy. Anyway, there’s certain asian vegetables that works well like the soup above with shrimp. Bok choy is another vegetable that is good to use.
So yeah, that’s it… There’s a lot of versions out there, but this one is something that I use now.