Friday, August 15, 2008

Vietnamese Braised Pork Riblets with Daikon (Suon Kho Cu Cai Trang)

Daikon is an East Asian giant white radish that’s very popular in Japanese and Korean cuisine. In Vietnamese cuisine, it is usually pickled and added to fish sauce and sandwiches or braised and sautéed with meat. It’s a great vegetable to braise because it absorbs much of the flavor from the broth. This low-calorie root vegetable is high in vitamin C and helps with digestion.

Braised Pork Riblets with Daikon (Suon Kho Cu Cai Trang)
(Yields 4 Entrée Portions)

  • 2 lbs pork ribs, cut 1-inch thick crosswise by butcher
  • Freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • Red chili powder to taste
  • Vietnamese fish sauce to taste
  • Dark soy sauce to taste
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp sesame seed oil
  • Cooking oil
  • 3 shallots, diced
  • 1-inch knob ginger, sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 1 Thai Bird’s Eye chili, left whole
  • 2 daikons, peeled & chunked
  • 2-3 cups water

This simple recipe requires minimal effort and only a little extra time to braise. Start off by seasoning the riblets with lots of freshly cracked black pepper, chili powder, fish sauce, soy sauce, sugar, and sesame seed oil. Set aside while you prep the rest of the ingredients.

Place a big pot over very high heat and drizzle with a tiny bit of oil. Toss in riblets and give them a good searing. Add shallots, ginger, garlic and chili and toss till fragrant. Add water and daikon and bring to a boil. Lower heat, cover and slow simmer for 30 minutes to an hour. It’s ready when the daikon has turned translucent and golden and the liquid has reduced by half or more. Adjust seasoning and serve with steamed jasmine rice.

6 comments:

[eatingclub] vancouver || js said...

My mother makes a similar dish, except without the chiles. This is a great homestyle dish and one of our comfort foods too! I'm going to coax her into adding a little heat into her dish.

SteamyKitchen said...

I miss daikon! The stuff I find here at the market are flabby and flacid. boo.

Tia said...

JS - Everything tastes better with a little heat!

Jaden - Boston is almost like SF--Asian grocers and restaurants galore! :D

Mark by Chocolate said...

I love cooking with daikon. Kim and I used to cook with it all the time. We grew several types in CA. I like the spring rolls too.

Question, how do you keep the skins from tearing. I have such trouble with that.

Tia said...

Welcome, Mark. :) To prevent the skins from tearing, make sure they stay moist by not opening the bag until you're ready to roll. Also, while you're rolling, keep the skins covered with a moist paper towel as you're working so they don't dry out on you. Good luck! ;)

jo said...

i have such a weakness for pork ribs. the daikon will give an added sweetness to the dish .. yum!