Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Sticky star anise beef short ribs

I created this recipe as an ode to a delicious meal I enjoyed recently in a little hole in the wall called South China Dim Sum Bar with a special friend (click here to read about the experience in the words of my crazy BFF - I simply cannot compete with the description of the dinner we had!). Tucked into a tiny space on seedy Long Street in the Cape Town CBD, the dim sum bar is one of those dodgy-looking restaurants that you shrug off as the last place you’d expect to find yumminess. But I found it in the form of sticky beef short ribs, which fell off the bone and were soaked in a rich, lick-your-fingers kind of sauce. It was heaven straight out of a disposable cardboard cup, with steamed rice to soak up the sweet sauce. The best part of this recipe is that it uses short ribs, which are so affordable. It’s a cut that few have the patience to fuss with, but simmer it slow and steady and it’ll make you weak at the knees.

Sticky star anise beef short ribs
Serves 4-6

2kg beef short ribs
6 sticks cinnamon
6 whole star anise
5cm piece ginger, peeled and sliced
¼ cup brown sugar
¾ cup oyster sauce
¾ cup rice wine vinegar
1 cup water
juice of 1 lemon
Rice and fresh coriander, to serve

Place the beef, cinnamon, star anise, ginger, garlic, sugar, oyster sauce, vinegar and water in a baking dish and cover tightly with aluminium foil. Roast for 2 hours at 180 degrees celcius. Remove foil and roast for a further 30 minutes or until tender and sticky. Squeeze the lemon juice over and serve with a mixture of brown and wild rice and fresh coriander on the side.


  1. Replies
    1. Hi there - I roast them at about 180 degrees celcius.

  2. Absolutely beautiful. It sounds strange, but I actually tried a similar recipe recently in which I used these gourmet olives. It turned out to be a huge hit with my guests!