Korean Short Ribs with Cucumber Kimchee

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 day 2 hr 40 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Inactive: 1 day 2 hr
  • Cook: 20 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 servings
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6 pounds beef short ribs, cut crosswise into twelve 2 1/2-inch squares (ask your butcher to cut the ribs for you)

Korean BBQ Marinade, recipe follows

Vegetable oil, for grill

Cucumber Kimchee:

4 Kirby cucumbers

4 scallions (white and green parts), thinly sliced

5 cloves garlic, chopped

3 tablespoons grated peeled fresh ginger

3 tablespoons sugar

1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt

1 1/2 teaspoons crushed red pepper, ground

Korean BBQ Marinade:

1 cup soy sauce

4 large cloves garlic, peeled and chopped (about 2 tablespoons)

2 tablespoons finely grated peeled fresh ginger

4 scallions (white and green), thinly sliced

1/4 cup sugar

2 tablespoons dark sesame oil

Freshly ground black pepper


  1. Cucumber Kimchee:
  2. Prepare ribs according to photo below. Place the ribs in one layer in a large non-reactive baking dish, pour in the Korean BBQ Marinade, and turn the ribs to coat. Cover and refrigerate. Marinate for 2 to 8 hours (longer makes the ribs too salty).
  3. Prepare an outdoor grill with a high-heat fire.
  4. Remove the ribs from the marinade. Brush the grill grate lightly with oil. Place the ribs on the grill meaty side down and cook, turning as needed, until well browned but still pink inside, about 10 to 12 minutes. Set ribs aside to rest for 5 minutes. Serve with Cucumber Kimchee.
  5. Cucumber Kimchee:
  6. A day before serving, halve the cucumbers crosswise, set them upright on the cut end, and slice lengthwise into quarters, stopping about 1/2 inch from the cut end. Mix the scallions, garlic, ginger, sugar, salt, and red pepper and stuff about a tablespoon of the mixture into each cucumber. Put the cucumbers in a small non-reactive baking dish, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight.

Korean BBQ Marinade:

Yield: about 1 1/2 cups
  1. Whisk soy sauce, garlic, ginger, scallions, sugar, sesame oil, and black pepper to taste in a medium bowl. Use marinade immediately or refrigerate for up to 2 days.

Cook’s Note

Shopsmart: Not all soy sauces are the same. Some are saltier, others sweet and thick. Light soy sauces are salty; the "light" refers to the body of the sauce. Dark soy sauces are sweeter and thicker. For the best results with this marinade, choose a dark Japanese or Korean soy sauce.