Braising kimchi and beef short ribs together might seem a bit odd, but like its German cousin sauerkraut, Korean fermented cabbage contributes a lot of complex and deep flavors when cooked with meat. To round out the meal, serve the short ribs with a Korean scallion or soybean sprout salad to cut through the richness of the dish.
What to buy: Look for the common English-cut beef short ribs, which are about 2 to 2 1/2 inches thick. Do not purchase Korean-style beef short ribs, which are about 1/4 inch thick with three rib bones attached.
Game plan: Try your hand at making your own kimchi, or you can purchase it at many grocery stores. Kimchi that’s been fermented for at least 2 weeks works well in this recipe, as its flavors are more pronounced.
- 1Heat the oven to 325°F and arrange a rack in the middle. Pat the ribs dry with paper towels, then season generously on all sides with salt and pepper.
- 2Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or large, heavy-bottomed, oven-safe pot with a tightfitting lid over medium-high heat until shimmering. Place half of the ribs in the pot and sear until all sides are golden brown, about 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a plate and repeat with the remaining ribs. Remove all but 1 tablespoon of fat from the pot.
- 3Reduce the heat to medium, add the onion, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes. Add the kimchi, stir to combine, and bring to a simmer. Add the broth and water and bring to a simmer again. Nestle the ribs into the mixture in an even layer and bring to a boil. Cover, place in the oven, and braise until the meat is just starting to pull away from the bones, about 1 hour 45 minutes.
- 4Remove the pot from the oven and add the carrots and radish, making sure the vegetables are mostly submerged in the braising liquid. Return to the oven uncovered and continue to braise until the meat is very tender (falling off the bones) and the vegetables are knife tender, about 45 minutes more.
- 5Using a slotted spoon, transfer the meat and vegetables to a serving platter and cover with foil to keep warm. Pour the braising liquid through a fine-mesh strainer set over a medium heatproof bowl; discard the solids. Let the liquid settle for a few minutes, then skim the fat from the surface; discard the fat. Taste the braising liquid and season with salt and pepper as needed. Sprinkle the short ribs and vegetables with the cilantro, and serve with the braising liquid and steamed rice on the side.