Memorial Day Weekend Recipe: Celebrating those who made our lifestyle possible
TAHOE/TRUCKEE, Calif. andamp;#8212; In 1971 Congress made official what General John Logan had started on May 5, 1868 proclaiming Memorial Day a national federal holiday. But what does Memorial Day really mean to you? I know, I know. It means the kids will soon be out of school, able to work, and supporting their own video game habits. It means it is really and truly time to fire up the barbecue and keep it lit for the next (God willing) few months. It means the DMV is closed, giving you yet another reason to procrastinate visiting that fine establishment.Yes, Memorial Day is a joyful day andamp;#8212; but no laughing matter. While we celebrate this weekend, letandamp;#8217;s also remember Memorial Day is a day to stop and reflect on the fact our freedom didnandamp;#8217;t come to us freely. Or easily. This is a day honoring the men and women who served this country, giving their lives, so we may enjoy life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. Speaking for myself, it is kind of scary I need a day set aside, in the calendar, to remind me of the many acts of human bravery and sacrifice that have lead us to this point, this day, where one of my biggest concerns is how many places to set at the table. This weekend marks the kick-off of the summer season, convivial outdoor gatherings, good friends, good community. Tahoe. Truckee. The veterans who fought for us, affording us the opportunity to live just such a day, would no doubt be high-fiving this grateful celebration of freedom. What pure pleasure it is to be able to go out to your deck, hug arriving family and friends, and bask in the beauty of the moment. Whenever I find myself having an ungrateful, spoiled brat episode of andamp;#8220;My life is so boring!andamp;#8221; I smile, shake my head, stop and say, andamp;#8220;My life is so easy.andamp;#8221; And then give a quiet thank you to those before me who helped make it this way.
These short ribs are actually called Kalbi and originated in Korea, but they are a staple on the Hawaiian plate lunch, and much more mainstream (and affordable!) than in Korea. You will have to call your grocer to order the special beef chuck Flanken style cut, (Safeway or SaveMart or Village Market in Incline Village, Nev. will accommodate you) and they do not charge you for that service. Short Rib Marinade3 lbs, beef short ribs, Flanken style cut1 cup soy sauce3 Tbls. sesame oil2 Tbls. chopped garlic1andamp;#8260;4 cup honey1andamp;#8260;4 cup water2 Tbls. green onions, chopped2 Tbls. sesame seedsPlace ribs in a 13×9 inch pan. Set aside. Mix all marinade ingredients, pour over ribs, coating all. Turn ribs to coat flip side, and let sit overnight, refrigerated. Grill on medium heat, about 4 minutes per side. Serves four, easily.
There are a few variations to this recipe, using clams or radishes, but I keep it simple and refreshing, a perfect side for grilled meat or fish.1 cup white vinegar or rice wine vinegar1andamp;#8260;4 cup sugar (use half as much if using rice wine vinegar)2 Tbls. grated ginger, or same amount from the jar. I prefer the jar with juice.1andamp;#8260;4 cup finely chopped onions1andamp;#8260;4 cup lemon juice1 carrot, grated2 cucumbers, peeled and sliced thinMix vinegar, sugar, ginger, onions and lemon juice until blended. Add cucumbers and carrot. Let sit for a few hours (minimum) before serving. Day of serving suggestions: Serve ribs and cucumber salad with white rice and Kimchi, a spicy cabbage andamp;#8220;relishandamp;#8221; (for lack of a better word) that is a traditional accompaniment to Korean short ribs. You can find it in the refrigerated section at Safeway. Do not let the smell fool you. Kimchi is good stuff, but a little bit does go a long way.