By Kath Dedon
When we stayed in a condo in the Kihei area of Maui years ago, we discovered Azeka’s. They sold the most delicious ribs that really had a cult following. They were thinly sliced “flanken-style” beef short ribs that were marinated in a teriyaki-style sauce. (You might also see this style of ribs called Kalbi Ribs or Korean Ribs.) We would take them back to the condo, steam some rice, make a salad, and throw them on the grill. Easy and delicious vacation cooking!
After over 50 years in business, Azeka’s closed in 2006. There are several different recipes for the marinade floating around on the Internet, posted by loyal fans trying to recreate the ribs at home. This is the version I have used for years.
The long marinating time really tenderizes the ribs; they only need about 10 minutes over a medium fire on a grill—about 5 minutes on each side.
If you don’t have a grill, you could broil them, but put them on a rack a few inches below the broiler and watch them carefully. The sugar in the marinade makes it easy for them to burn. I’ve never broiled them, but I imagine it would also take 4 – 5 minutes on each side.
(Inspired by the ribs from Azeka’s)
(Serves 4; you can cut in half for 2 or double for a crowd)
3 – 3½ pounds flanken beef short ribs
½ cup soy sauce (use wheat-free tamari for gluten-free)
¼ cup dark sesame oil
3 tablespoons sugar (or honey)
2 green onions, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
2 teaspoons thinly sliced ginger
(Optional) Extra green onions for garnish
Combine the soy sauce, sesame oil, sugar, onions, garlic and ginger. Put the ribs in a non-reactive baking pan (like Pyrex) or Zip-loc bag and cover with the sauce. Cover and refrigerator for at least 24 hours. They can marinate for up to 3 days and only get better if you marinate them for a longer period of time. Turn them in the marinade a couple of times a day.
Grill the ribs over medium heat—about 5 minutes on each side.
Serve with rice and topped with some fresh green onions.