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MasterChef New Zealand


Braised Ribs

Soy Braised Angus Short Ribs with Kasundi, Cucumber and Coriander Salad
Recipe by Michael Lee

Preparation Time: 20 Minutes, plus pickled ginger made three days in advance and kasundi started one night ahead
Cooking Time: 55 Minutes
Serves 2
Special equipment required: Pressure cooker

Pickled Ginger
8cm stem of ginger, peeled and sliced very thinly
3 tbsp Homebrand white vinegar
1 lime, juiced
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp Homebrand sugar

6 Angus short ribs, meat removed from bones in one piece, sinew trimmed
6 shitake mushrooms, sliced
8 star anise
2 coriander roots
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1 piece of ginger, 5cm long, sliced
5 cloves of garlic, peeled
1/2 cinnamon quill
4 tbsp soy sauce
4 tbsp Homebrand brown sugar

6cm piece of ginger, peeled, roughly chopped
4 cloves of garlic, peeled, roughly chopped
1 tbsp black mustard seeds, soaked overnight in water
1/4 cup palm or Muscavado sugar 
1/4 malt vinegar
1 tsp ground cumin
4 tbsp fish sauce
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 large red chillies, finely chopped
1 tsp chilli powder (optional)
1 425g can Homebrand diced tomatoes

Cucumber and Coriander Salad
1/2 telegraph cucumber, peeled
2 tbsp salt
1/2 tbsp fish sauce
1 lemon, juiced
1 lime, juiced
1 mandarin, juiced
1 tsp Homebrand sugar
20 coriander leaves
1 tsp black sesame seeds, to serve

Steamed Sunrice rice, to serve

1. To make the pickled ginger, bring a medium sized saucepan of water to the boil and blanch the sliced ginger for 15 seconds. Drain the ginger and refresh in cold water. Mix the vinegar, lime juice, salt and sugar until the sugar has dissolved. Place the ginger in the pickling solution and allow to pickle for at least three days.

2. For the ribs, heat the base of a pressure cooker over high heat and sear the ribs on both sides until browned. Add the mushrooms, star anise, coriander roots, fennel seeds, ginger, garlic, cinnamon, sugar, soy and enough water to cover. Place the lid on the pressure cooker and cook for approximately 50 minutes according to manufacturer's instructions.

3. For the kasundi, place all the ingredients, except the tomatoes, into a food processor. Blend until a smooth paste has formed. Heat a saucepan over medium low heat and add the blended mixture. Cook slowly, stirring regularly, for approximately 8-10 minutes, or until the paste becomes very thick and dark in colour. Add the tomatoes and cook until the tomato loses its raw flavour, approximately 10-15 minutes. Set aside.

4. For the salad, use a vegetable peeler to peel the flesh of the cucumber to create ribbons. Work your way around the cucumber evenly and stop peeling when you reach the seeds. Discard the seeded portion of the cucumber. Place the ribbons of cucumber in a sieve and sprinkle with the salt. Let sit for 10 minutes.

5. To make the salad dressing, combine in a small bowl, the fish sauce, lemon juice, lime juice, mandarin juice and sugar and mix well.

6. Rinse off the cucumber in cold water and discard the liquid which has leeched out of the ribbons. Pat the cucumber ribbons dry and add the dressing and coriander leaves.

7. To serve, remove the beef from the pressure cooker and place on a chopping board. Slice meat diagonally across the grain into thin even strips. Place even portions of meat on two warmed plates and spoon over mushrooms with a little of the cooking liquor. Neatly place a small nest of cucumber salad on top of the beef and top with a few slices of pickled ginger. Sprinkle over sesame seeds. Serve with steamed rice.

Please note - this recipe is untested in the MasterChef kitchen.