Today is Valentine's Day, and according to the U.S. Census Bureau, roughly 47% of Americans age 18 and older are single. That's nearly half the country. That's a lot of shared meals that won't be happening tonight. This staggering statistic seriously validates my goal of making solo meals exciting, appealing, and perhaps even sexy. Because half of America have hot dates tonight — with themselves.
I've made a lot of date-worthy meals in my day, but there is nothing quite like a savory braised meat over a creamy starch (or a healthier starch substitute like cauliflower) and paired with buttery soft vegetables. Because the ribs are slow-simmered for a long time, they become insanely flavorful. And I found that the umami flavor of miso (you know I love sneaking miso into everything) works really well with the mellow creaminess of cauliflower.
This dish has fewer components than most of my dishes, so it's actually a cinch to make. That way you'll have more time for wining and Netflixing.
So, friends, treat yourselves tonight with my braised short ribs and miso cauliflower puree. And don't forget to snap a photo for Instagram and tag @aiya_kitchen!
Serves 1 (But you will have some leftovers)
- 1 lb short ribs
- Salt and pepper
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves
- 1 medium shallot
- 4 Tbsp soy sauce
- 2 Tbsp honey
- 1 Tbsp ginger, minced
- 1 medium to large carrot
- 1-2 beets
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 2 cups cauliflower florets
- 2 cups milk
- 1 Tbsp white miso
- Microgreens for garnishing
- Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Chop the ribs into 2-inch pieces. Season both sides with salt and pepper.
- Heat the olive oil in a large dutch oven on medium-high heat and sear the ribs on both sides until browned. (You might have to do in batches.)
- Remove the ribs and set aside. Turn heat down to medium and add the garlic and shallots and cook, stirring frequently, until soft and fragrant, about 5 minutes.
- Add the ribs back into the pot along with the soy sauce, honey, and ginger. Cover ribs with water by 1 inch and bring to a simmer. Cover, reduce heat to low, and let simmer for 10 minutes before transferring pot to oven. Cook ribs in oven until fork tender, about 2 hours.
- Meanwhile, peel the carrot and beets. Cut the carrot into 1-inch-thick rounds and quarter the beets. Add carrot and beet pieces to a small pot and cover with water. Add the butter and season with salt. Bring to a boil and then cover and reduce heat to simmer. Cook the carrots until fork tender, about 7-8 minutes. Remove carrots and continue cooking the beets until tender, about 35 minutes. Add a splash of lemon juice or vinegar to the water to keep the beets from bleeding, if you'd like.
- Make the cauliflower puree. Whisk the milk and miso together until combined. Add the florets and milk-miso mixture to a large saucepan, season with salt, and simmer until the florets are fork tender, about 10 minutes. Scoop the cooked florets into a food processor, adding enough liquid for your desired consistency, and purée until smooth.
- To assemble, start with your desired amount of cauliflower purée, top with ribs an plenty of sauce, and arrange carrots and beets around the meat. Top everything with microgreens.