These chilly nights have brought my thoughts and cravings from gelato to warm, comforting, Autumn soups. The season’s first:
1.5 lb. bone-in beef short ribs
1.5 lb. beef shank, cut into 2 or 3 pieces
½ onion, sliced
1 1 inch piece ginger, smashed
½ bunch scallions, white parts smashed and greens chopped
2 garlic cloved, smashed
1 fresh red chile, stemmed and halved
6 c. water
1/8 c. soy sauce
2 whole star anise
1 2 inch cinnamon stick
8 oz. dried flat Asian rice noodles
Mint sprigs, cilantro sprigs, lime wedges
Pat meat dry and brown meat in batches in a soup pot. Set meat aside. Brown onion, ginger, scallions, garlic and chili. Add water, soy sauce, anise, cinnamon and meat with juices. Simmer, covered for 2 to 2 ½ hours. Transfer meat to cutting board. Discard bone and membrane and cut or shred into small pieces.
Strain broth through a chinois, skim fat, add meat back in and season with salt. Meanwhile, heat unsalted water in another pot until boiling, remove from heat, add noodles, cover and soften 6-7 minutes. Drain and rinse with cold water.
Place noodles in bowls, add scallion greens, cilantro and mint sprigs. Ladle in soup and flavor with lime.
Adapted from Gourmet Magazine