16 1-inch-diameter dried shiitake mushrooms
3 pounds beef short ribs, each scored with four 1/2-inch deep slices
2 cups mirin
1 1/4 cups soy sauce
2-inch piece fresh ginger, peeled, lightly crushed
3 garlic cloves, peeled, smashed
1 pound daikon, peeled, trimmed, cut into 2-inch squares
4 carrots, peeled, cut diagonally into 1 1/2-inch lengths
2 teaspoons sesame oil
1 cup canned ginkgo nuts, optional
1/2 cup cornstarch, optional
3/4 cup cold water, optional
Place dried mushrooms in medium bowl. Add enough hot water to cover and let soak until softened, about 30 minutes. Remove mushrooms from water, squeezing excess water back into bowl. Strain and reserve soaking liquid in 2-cup glass measuring cup, leaving sediment behind. Remove and discard stems. Reserve caps.
Place ribs in heavy medium stockpot. Add enough water to cover ribs. Bring to simmer, skimming foam from atop surface. Drain and discard all water.
Return ribs to pot. Add mirin, soy sauce, ginger, garlic, reserved mushroom soaking liquid and enough water to cover ribs by 1 inch. Bring to boil over medium-high heat; reduce heat to low. Simmer uncovered 1 hour, skimming foam from atop liquid and adding more water if necessary to cover meat. Stir in daikon and reserved mushroom caps. Simmer 30 minutes. Add carrots and simmer until meat is fork tender, about 30 minutes longer. Season sauce to taste with additional soy sauce and sugar. Stir in sesame oil and ginkgo nuts, if desired. Cook until heated through. Discard crushed ginger. Spoon ribs into bowls and serve.
Active Time: 1 Hour 20 Minutes
Total Time: 2 Hours 50 Minutes
Yield: 8 Servings