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4.38 from 8 votes

Steam Ribs in Black Bean Sauce (豉汁蒸排骨)

Steam may not sound like your preferred method to cook ribs but this is the most popular rib recipe in Cantonese cuisines. By sauteing part of the garlic and the fermented black soybean, the flavor really stands out. The citrus aroma from the orange peel is like a nice little spark that refreshes everything. These ribs are incredibly tender, juicy, and full of umami flavor.
Servings: 2 people



  • Slice the ribs in between the bones into bite-size pieces. Then rub with salt, corn starch, crushed ice and Chinese cooking wine for 8 minutes. This 8 minutes of rubbing is going to loosen up the grains and fibers, which tenderize the ribs physically - very important.
  • Rinse the ribs under cold running water for a few minutes or until all the starch is gone Then drain completely. This cleaning process will remove any unpleasant smell and wash off some of the Myoglobin, which is the redness that appears on the meat. If you don’t wash it, you will get a meaty, gamy taste and your ribs will be brown after cooking. This is completely optional and up to you but I as a Cantonese, we prefer our meat to have a light color and a clean taste especially when making steamed recipes.
  • In a mixing bowl, combine the marinading ingredients for the ribs: soy sauce, oyster sauce, chinese cooking wine, salt, baking soda, sugar, white pepper, granulated orange peel, 2 tbsp of minced garlic (reserve 1 tbsp for later), and 2 tsp of the minced ginger (reserve 1 tsp for later).
  • Even though the ribs are well-drained, it is still wet. Use paper towels to absorb as much water as possible then mix the ribs with the marinade.
  • Once all the flavor is well combined, add 2 tbsp of cornstarch and mix thoroughly. This will get you that classic dim sum rib texture. Set the ribs aside for now.
  • In a sauce pot, add the black soybean, the reserved garlic and ginger, and 2 tbsp of oil. Saute for a couple of minutes or until the aromatics are slightly golden on the edge. Turn off the heat. Let it cool.
  • Pour the aromatics and oil into the ribs and stir thoroughly. Let is sit in the fridge for at least 1 hour (over night will be even better).
  • Place the ribs in the plate and steam on high heat for 30 minutes. Make sure you have enough water in the pot so it doesn’t boil to dry.
  • Sprinkle some diced scallion as garnish. Enjoy