"The lamb ribs from Rhubarb restaurant in Asheville, North Carolina perfectly walk the line between savory and sweet. And that line is succulence. I'm going out on a lamb here and saying these are the best ribs I've ever had," says Hannah Hart, host of the Food Network show I Hart Food.
We love this recipe because the rich, earthy flavor of the lamb is are a perfect match for the sharp bite of kimchi and the sweet tang of the Mongolian barbecue sauce. This stays on our menu because it's an easy and approachable way of making lamb, and people absolutely love it.
Technique tip: The collard green kimchi should be made at least two days in advance. It can be stored in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.
Swap option: For the collard green kimchi, try any seasonal green that has some thickness and bite to it. Kale and broccoli greens are great!
Mongolian barbecue sauce
- 1 cup hoisin sauce
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
- 4 scallions, minced
- 1 tablespoon hot sauce, preferably Crystal
- 1½ teaspoons sriracha
- 1½ teaspoons grated ginger
- 1½ tablespoons minced garlic
- 1/4 cup minced cilantro
- 1 tablespoon sesame oil
- 2 racks Denver lamb ribs
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 24 ounces beef stock
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 1 large carrot, roughly chopped
- 2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
- 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
Quick collard green kimchi
- 1 bunch collard greens, ribs removed, washed, sliced into 1/4-inch wide strips
- 2 tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 carrot, cut into thin matchsticks
- 4 radishes, cut into thin matchsticks
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 teaspoon chopped garlic
- 1 bunch scallions, thinly slices on the bias
- 1 jalapeño, minced
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
For the Mongolian barbecue sauce:
Whisk all the ingredients together in a bowl. Cover and let marinate in the fridge for 4-6 hours.
For the ribs:
1. Preheat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat. Preheat oven to 275°F.
2. Season lamb ribs with salt and pepper. Grill on each side for 4-5 minutes. Remove ribs to a shallow roasting pan and add the remaining ingredients. Cover with aluminum foil, place in the oven and braise for 4-5 hours until ribs are tender but not falling apart.
3. Allow ribs to cool in braising liquid for another hour out of the oven. Remove ribs and chill.
4. Once chilled, cut into single bone portions and set aside.
For the quick kimchi collard greens:
Toss collard greens in kosher salt and let sit in a colander for one hour. Rinse salt from collard greens and stir carrot, radishes, soy sauce and water together in a container. Toss collard greens and soy-vegetable mixture. Let sit out overnight covered by cheesecloth (or a clean kitchen towel).
The next day, drain soy-water mixture and reserve. Stir garlic, scallions, jalapeño and red pepper flakes into collard mixture. Whisk honey and vinegar into soy mixture. Combine all.
Preheat the oven to 350°F. Liberally brush portioned ribs with the Mongolian barbecue sauce. Place in the oven to reheat for 7-9 minutes. Remove from oven and brush with barbecue sauce again.
Serve with the collard greens kimchi on the side.