Steamed Pork Ribs with Pickled Plums

Thursday, 10 February 2011

Ribs again, after the last post on coffee pork ribs? Well, that's all I have in the fridge.

The last time I shopped was more than a week ago, before Chinese New Year. I tried to stock up last Sunday but there wasn't anything fresh at all. The market and supermart were all clearing their leftovers from before the holidays. I'm guessing they'd be clearing their old stocks till this weekend, so I'm following suit. No one's fobbing off stale stuff on me!

After feasting on "heaty" goodies like steamboat and bak kwa, it's time to rebalance the body by eating more "cooling" stuff like fruits and vegetables. And for meat devotees who must eat an animal part or two everyday, pork ribs steamed with pickled plums is a good option. According to traditional Chinese medicine principles, frying or roasting meat makes it "heaty" but steaming doesn't. And it's even better if the steamed meat is paired with pickled plums, which is a strong "cooling agent".

Steamed pork ribs with pickled plums is good for whetting the appetite 'cause it's a bit sour. Loss of appetite is one of the signs of an overly 'heaty" body, together with bad breath and a furry tongue. If indiscriminate eating continues despite these warnings, there could be mouth ulcers, throat infections, acne and, in serious cases, nose bleeds. In other words, it's time to lay off the bak kwa and fried chicken! Have some steamed ribs instead, with a pickled plum or two thrown in. It's not necessary to abstain from all meat. Done the right way, you can have your meat and eat it too!

STEAMED PORK RIBS WITH PICKLED PLUMS (梅子蒸排骨)
Source: All About Pork Ribs
(Recipe for 4 persons)

400 g pork prime ribs, chopped 2½ cm (1 inch) long, washed, and dried
Marinade
1 red chilli, washed and roughly chopped
1 tbsp mashed pickled plums (水梅), without seeds
1 tbsp light soya sauce
1 tbsp plum paste (酸梅膏)
1 tbsp water
1½ tsp Shaoxing wine
1 tsp oil
½ tsp sugar
¼ tsp ground white pepper

½ tbsp potato flour
1 tbsp roughly chopped spring onions
. . . or Chinese parsley

In a deep plate, stir marinade ingredients till well combined. Add ribs and massage till marinade is absorbed. Set aside for 30 minutes, stirring once midway. Sprinkle with potato flour. Mix thoroughly. Steam over bubbling water till tender, about 1 hour. Sprinkle with spring onions or Chinese parsley. Serve, with steamed rice generously drizzled with the savory meat juices.
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