Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Korean Sesame Rib Marinade

By Paul Briand

My wife Jane and I had family over for dinner the other night and we served chicken kabobs with chicken and vegetables that had marinated in some store-bought marinade. Shame, shame, shame ... I know.

But during my shopping this week I found some lovely looking country-style pork ribs and promised myself a marinade that I'd make, and I found this one, although to be honest I'm not sure what is so Korean about it.

Asian, yes. Korean? I don't see anything in the ingredients that necessarily classify it as being particularly Korean. But that's how the recipe described itself so I'll have to respect that.

The key to a successful marinade is giving it time to work its magic. The marinade needs time to break down the meat (or chicken or fish or whatever) to start infusing it with the marinade's flavors, which in this case are the tang of some garlic and scallions, the sweetness of the brown sugar and some smokiness from the sherry.

The recipe I found called for regular sugar, but I substituted it for brown sugar. I just like it better in marinades and sauces.

1/2 cup soy sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 scallions chopped
3 tablespoons sherry
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon fresh grated ginger
2 tablespoons roasted sesame seeds

1. Mix the ingredients in an amply sized mixing bowl, reserving the sesame seeds for later;
2. Place your meat (in my case 2 pounds of the ribs, but whatever it is you want to marinade) into a gallon Ziploc bag;
3. Poor the marinade into the bag and carefully expel as much of the air as you can then seal the zip;
4. Work the marinade around the meat, and lay the bag into a large baking dish or whatever you have to contain a possible (but not likely leak). This is a piece of advice I picked up from Guy Fieri and his "Guy's Big Bite" show on the Food Channel;
5. Let the marinade work for two hours minimum, longer if you can;
6. Extract the meat and cook as desired;
7. Sprinkle cooked meat with sesame seeds.

A lot of people will toss the marinade. I don't. I put it in a sauce pan, heat it through to a boil and use it as a side sauce.
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