Thursday, July 10, 2008

Korean Fusion Baby Back Ribs Barbecue

Summer is here and it is probably not an exaggeration to say everybody's favorite summer dish is barbecue. Barbecue, although originated from Europe initially, has been uniquely developed to be American's signature dish over centuries. In 19th century in Southern United States, barbecue was predominantly for pork as pork was low maintenance meat there was available. Many southern states had developed their own unique ways of barbecuing since then, using local ingredients such as oak, hickory woods, chili powder, and tomato base. Although condiments may vary among states such as Kansas or Texas, one thing the early barbecuers knew was that there had to be natural burning energy sources such as wood, which can add smoky flavor to the meat and enhance their overall barbecue experience. The Americans using certain woods in their barbecue is very similar to how early Koreans used certain blacked wood chips for Korean barbecue.

This Korean fusion baby back ribs barbecue is a fusion dish that I created with a different barbecue sauce recipe combined with a Korean and American flavor together and a unique method of preparation. Baby back ribs are prepared using similar ways as to Korean steamed ribs called Galbijjim in the beginning to soften the texture of the ribs before grilling. Then later the sweet, spicy, and overall flavorful sauce is added to the barbecue with a kick of smoky burning hickory wood chips. Follow the steps below and you will have a great barbecuing experience.

1. First, prepare the barbecue sauce. 1Tsp Korean red chili paste, 2Tsp red chili powders, 3Tsp Teriyaki sauce, 2Tsp soy sauce, 2Tsp honey, 2Tsp barbecue sauce, 2tsp vinegar, 1Tsp minced garlic, 3Tsp minced onion, and sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds

2. Steam pork baby back ribs in a pressure cooker by adding chopped onions, and fresh ginger on the bottom, and a pinch of salt over water for 5 minutes.

3. Prepare hickory wooden chips by putting them on a aluminum foil plate.

Put water to the wooden chips and leave it for 20 minutes to make them wet.
Then drain the water out and poke holes on the foil for a good circulation of smoke below the grill.

So this is the barbecue grill my parents have. This is a gas grill and of course the flavor is by itself, not as great as charcoal grills. However, adding hickory wooden chips for indirect wood barbecuing flavor to the meat will even trump the flavor of charcoal grilled meat by itself.

Turn on all the heat.

4. Place the wooden chips on one side of the grill and shut the cover and let it burn for 10-15 minutes.
This is when it started to burn and produce the smoky flavor typical of hickory wood.

5. Now it's time for some barbecuing. Bring out your steamed pork baby back ribs and put them on the other side of the grill.

6. Right after, you need to apply the barbecue sauce and brush them thoroughly.

7. Shut the cover and cook for 2 minutes. You won't need to cook for so long since the inside is already cooked.

8. As the fully cooked and already hot ribs will require shorter time to cook, it also requires a shorter time to have grill marks on it. After the grill marks, you need to flip them over to the other side and apply some serious barbecue sauce this time.
Brush the sauce thoroughly to make sure all the sides are touched upon.

9. Continue to heat for additional 2 minutes and you're ready to eat!

As you need, you can apply more fresh barbecue sauce prepared in step #1 for enhancing the barbecue flavor. Enjoy!

Ok so I'm submitting this recipe to this barbeque contest at We'll see if I get the prize.
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