There are always ingredients to play around with when I’m ready to get in the kitchen.
After taking another peek, it was time to get to business with all of the frozen meat in my freezer. My line of work means I’m constantly bringing home leftovers–some cooked, much of it raw. Late last year, I packed up chunks of tri-tip that I knew would make for good eating. A couple of weeks ago, I pulled them out with an idea for a big bowl that would hit the spot.
You may remember this Bruleed Marshmallow and Caramel Custard Tart? The chocolate pastry dough was Chef David Guas’ recipe. Here’s another one inspired by his Asian Grilled Tri-Tip that I had the chance to eat as a taco. I decided to make my own Asian-style marinade with tamari, Filipino cane vinegar, sesame oil, brown sugar and sriracha. Another flavor-enhancing ingredient is rehydrated shiitake mushrooms and their broth. They bring the elements of the marinade together, giving it a round nature that feels comforting and tastes just right.
This is one of those dishes that benefits from a slow ride in the oven, so braising is definitely the way to go. For this recipe, the marinade serves as a tenderizer, as well as the base of the braising liquid. Tri-tip is fairly inexpensive, one reason being that it is a tougher cut of meat. Marinating and braising help to break down the fibers. The result is tender and flavorful. This is another winter perfect dish that will make you want to cuddle up on the couch with a bowl in one hand and the remote in another.
Braised Tri-Tip Noodle Bowl
Serves: 4 to 6
2 pounds beef tri-tip, cut into 2" cubes
¼ cup tamari
¼ cup cane vinegar (or rice wine vinegar)
¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
1 tablespoon sesame oil
½ teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons sriracha
2 scallions, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon fresh minced ginger
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 ounce dried shiitake mushrooms
2-3 cups cooked soba noodles, for serving
Toppings suggestions: cooked eggs, carrots, cucumber, scallions, jicama, chilies, peanuts, cabbage, bean sprouts, cooked vegetables, sesame seeds
Hot water, for serving
Lime wedges, fresh Thai basil or mint, for garnish
Place the meat in a large resealable bag. Add the soy sauce, cane vinegar, 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, black pepper, brown sugar, sriracha, scallions, ginger and garlic. Seal the bag well, and use your hands to massage all of the ingredients into the meat. Marinate overnight.
While the meat marinates, place the mushrooms in a medium saucepan with 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil over a medium-low flame, then reduce to a simmer. Simmer for 20 minutes, or until the mushrooms have softened slightly. Remove from heat.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
Once the meat is ready, heat large Dutch oven over medium-high flame. Add the 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil, and heat until it begins to smoke. While the oil heats, lay the meat on paper towels, patting each piece dry. Reserve the marinade. Sear the meat on all sides until browned, about 2-3 minutes per side.
Once the meat has been seared, pour the marinade into the Dutch oven, along with the mushroom broth. Cover, and slide the pot into the oven. Braise for 2 hours, or until the meat is tender and easy to shred. Remove from the oven, and shred the meat with two forks.
Serve over noodles with toppings of your choice, spooning some of the beef broth and a bit of hot water into the bowl. Garnish as desired.