Chinese Steamed Spare Ribs

One of our favorite occasional indulgences is Chinese dim sum, and one of my favorite dim sum dishes is spare ribs with black beans. In Asia, black beans (douchi) aren’t the same black beans you get at Chipotle; they’re actually a fermented and salted version of soy beans. This recipe is basically my take on this dish but without the beans.

Part of this dish’s unique taste is the combination of sweet and salty with a subtle fermented twinge – in order to pull this signature fermented taste off, I added dashes of oyster sauce and fish sauce, and it came out beautifully.

You’ll Need:
3 lbs pork spareribs, cut into chunks
6 cloves garlic, chopped coarsely
1 inch fresh ginger, chopped coarsely
2 tbsp potato starch
1 tbsp oyster sauce
1 tbsp wheat-free tamari
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp chinese cooking wine
1 tbsp honey
1 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp five spice blend
1/2 tsp fish sauce

Chop up the spare ribs as much as possible, so you have an assortment of pieces. Most spare ribs that you find in restaurants are usually chopped smaller than what you see above, but I don’t own a cleaver (yet). Combine the ribs will all of the other ingredients, mixing thoroughly. Marinate the ribs for two hours in the fridge and then place them in a round cake pan.

Place the cake pan in a wok or fryer and fill the wok with enough water so that it’s within an inch of the cake pan’s rim.

Cover and steam on med-high heat for an hour, refilling the water if it gets really low (it probably won’t). Don’t be alarmed if the wok starts moving around.

Let it cool for a few minutes and serve.

My wok went a little crazy during steaming. My wife kept thinking someone was knocking at the front door:

Printer-friendly version

6 thoughts on “Chinese Steamed Spare Ribs

  1. Looks fantastic! It’s 7:19AM on Wednesday and I haven’t even had breakfast yet! I’m on vacation for the rest of the week and hope to try one of you recipes . We love Rojan Gosh, but use a bottle to make it at home. It is nice to find something new to make at home. Our culinary repertoire is fairly limited. Thanks for the great ideas!


  2. Hi Russ! This looks like such an interesting recipe and cooking method. I have only done spare ribs in the slow cooker, but this will have to go on the to do list. I wanted to let you know that I nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award! I think your story and your recipes are incredibly worthwhile reads for anyone, and especially those who follow a Paleo diet or want to learn to recreate delicious dishes from many cultures at home. Congrats!


  3. i was never one to follow direction :P so i tried this with a bone in porkchop and on a charcoal grill.. came out awesome!!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s