Someone's getting old- and it aint me.

There are 5 glorious months between my boyfriend’s and my birthday, where he is considered a year older. I live for these 5 months, where I will yell OLD from across the house, and he knows I’m not talking to the cat. I love him dearly (he puts up with my shit, calling me out and offering not-so-subtle guidance), and for that, he gets teased for being old for 5 months of the year. every year.

Normally for our birthdays we use it as an excuse to go to a great restaurant and indulge, but this year is a bit different because I decided to cook. Not an everyday kind of meal, but something a bit more intensive.

So of course I decide to make a 3 part meal and keto cheesecake for him. and for me, who am I kidding. I made Chris Morocco’s Korean style short ribs (BA issue from Nov. 2015), which were insane in a good way. I set my smoke detector once event with all windows and screen doors open. c’est la vie bitches. With the short ribs, I bought some kimchi and fish cakes at the local Asian market, which I instantly fell in love with. I also made BA’s spicy cheddar dip and threw that stuff on endives because we’re fancy.

birthday dinner

The fishcakes (bottom left) were tasty, but so fucking weird. I love it. Every time we go out to Korean BBQ, it’s what I scarf down, along with the steamed egg. I was going to make steamed eggs, but totally forgot. meh. I’ll put the recipe for fish cakes in a few scrolls. The beef was delicious, and combined with the kimchi it was a great umami mouth circus. Cold/hot, sour/tangy/sweet/savory tastiness.

korean beef

This beef was so flipping good. I made it lower in carb (subbing Lakanto for brown sugar), an it was tender and I wanted to eat it all in one sitting. I didn’t, but oh man was I tempted. Instead, I ate enough to feel like pudge the fish and saved the rest for his lunch the next day. I couldn’t find the recipe on their website, so I will put in below as well! This was an easy meal, all things considered, and it was great to go at it on a communal plate with a pair of chopsticks. Forks are for the weak.


Makes 4 servings, takes 15 minutes.

2 tubes of prepped fish cakes from the Korean market. I don’t know if they were pre-cooked, it was literally in Korean.

1/2 onion

2T soy sauce

1.5T sweetener (I used lakanto, you can use honey)

2t rice vinegar

1t minced garlic

2t sesame oil

I sliced the fish cakes hotdog-style, and sliced the onion. I already had minced garlic in my fridge, so prep was non-existent. I added 1T sesame oil to a medium heat pan, and sauteed the sliced onion until soft. The interwebs told me that the fish cakes are technically cooked, and just need to be heated. riiiiight. Oh, mix up the rest of the ingredients for the sauce, not the fish cakes.

Once the onions are getting translucent, add the sliced fish cakes and gently move around the pan, getting them nice and toasty. Once they are starting to brown, dump in the sauce and lower the heat, stirring constantly. Once the sauce thickens and the fish cakes and onion visibly absorb the sauce you’re set!

If you’ve never had fish cakes, they’re a bit squishy so the onion adds a good texture. I’m allergic to bell peppers, but I’m sure they’d be good in this! Also, thin sliced jalapenos, but we were out.

Korean Short Ribs from Chris Morocco and Bon Appetit

Serves 4, takes time because of a marinade, 1-7 hours. (30 minutes active time)

1LB short ribs, thinly sliced

1/4 pear, grated

1 garlic clove, grated

2T soy sauce

1T gochujang

1T ginger, grated

1T lakanto golden monk fruit (they used brown sugar)

1T toasted sesame oil

scallions for decoration, high heat oil for cooking, salt for salt

Alrighty. Once all your shit is prepped, mix everything but the meat in a bowl, I recommend a whisk. Put all the meat in a plastic bag, then dump the sauce in it. massage the sauce into the meat, and squeeze out the air from the bag. BA says it can chill in the fridge up to 6 hours, or on the counter for 30 minutes. I chilled it in the fridge for about 4 hours, then brought it to room temp for another 45 minutes on my counter.

Heat oil in a skillet (I used a cast iron) on med-high. Remove meat from bag and salt, or if you’re like me, salt it in the bag and mix it all up. Nae tip part 1: reserve the marinade for later. yea, raw meat and shit. hold your horses. Here’s the intensive part: you will not move from the stove for 15 straight minutes. Ask your spouse/Alexa/Google Home to watch your kids because this is where you can fuck it up. Cook in batches (a non-crowded single layer of meat) to keep the temp regulated. They take literally one minute on the first side to get brown/black and crunchy on the outside, and then flip and let em do their thing for another 2-3 minutes. Take them off the pan, add more oil if needed (give it a few seconds to heat up), and add another layer. Keep going until you have only one more batch.

Nae tip part 2: On your last batch, right after you flip the meat, dump the marinade in the pan with the meat. This will allow the marinade to cook off all the raw meat bacteria and you’ll get a tasty sauce. Once it bubbles away and the last batch is done, dump them both onto the plate so the sauce gets on all the tasty tasty meat. Top with scallions and you’re set.

We ate these without rice, but that would be a solid side if you’re into starches, otherwise, caulirice/lettuce cups also work! So do your hands, you’re an animal, remember?