Short rib rendang

Short rib rendang

  • serves 4
  • A little effort

Try this punchy, make-ahead short rib rendang and steamed buns from Joe’s Oriental Diner, a South-east Asian dive-bar in Hackney. The steamed buns recipe can be used separately to this as well.



  • beef short ribs 1kg, on the bone
  • light olive oil
  • kombu (dried seaweed) 10cm piece (optional) 
  • star anise
  • cinnamon sticks 2
  • coconut milk 300ml
  • coriander leaves chopped to serve
  • red chilli sliced to serve
  • crispy shallots to serve
  • red shallots 125g, peeled and finely sliced
  • galangal 130g, finely sliced
  • lemongrass 6 sticks, bruised and finely chopped
  • garlic 10 cloves, crushed 
  • ginger 100g, peeled and finely sliced
  • dried red chillies 6 large, then seeded and chopped
  • fresh yeast 17g (or 5g fast-action yeast)
  • strong bread flour 325g
  • milk powder 15g
  • baking powder a pinch
  • caster sugar 30g
  • light olive oil 35ml


  • Step 1

    Whizz the spice paste ingredients in a blender until well combined to make a smooth paste.

  • Step 2

    Heat a frying pan until very hot. Season the short ribs really well with salt and pepper, then sear them until well browned. You may have to do this in batches.

  • Step 3

    In a deep casserole dish with a lid, cook the blended spice paste in 1 tbsp light olive oil until fragrant.Add the kombu, star anise and cinnamon, and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the browned short ribs.

  • Step 4

    Pour in the coconut milk then cover the short ribs with water. Cover with a lid and simmer gently for 2 1/2 – 3 hours, the meat should fall away from the bone easily. Cool the short ribs in the cooking liquor.

  • Step 5

    Once well-cooled, cut the meat away from the bone, trim off any excess fat and cut the meat into bite-sized chunks. Skim the sauce of any excess fat and remove the aromatics.

  • Step 6

    To make the buns, mix the yeast with 175ml warm water and set aside.

  • Step 7

    Mix the flour, milk powder, baking powder, a pinch of salt and the sugar in a stand mixer using the dough hook attachment until mixed. On a medium speed, pour in the yeast and water mixture and mix well.

  • Step 8

    Slowly drizzle in the oil until well combined. Continue to mix on medium speed for 20 minutes.

  • Step 9

    Put the dough into a lightly oiled bowl, cover with clingfilm and keep in a warm place to prove for around 30-35 minutes. Once dough has at least doubled in size, knock it back down to a flat dough.

  • Step 10

    Cut the dough into balls of approximately 100g, cover with oiled clingfilm and cool in the fridge or freeze until required. Roll each ball out into an oval shape, dip a chopstick into oil and drape the dough over it so that it forms a half-moon shape, adding a square of parchment paper in the fold to stop it sticking together. Put on parchment paper inside a steamer basket.

  • Step 11

    Before steaming, allow to prove once again for 10 minutes. Steam for 15-20 minutes, or until the buns have doubled in size, are soft and springy, but bounce back when you press them.

  • Step 12

    To serve, simmer the sauce until thickened enough to coat the meat.  Add the meat to the sauce and simmer for a few minutes until heated through. Serve in bowls topped with some coriander, red chillies and crispy shallots. Just before serving, give the buns a quick blast with a blowtorch, or under a very hot grill, and serve alongside the rendang.

Nutritional Information

  • Kcals 944
  • Fat 47.4g
  • Saturates 22g
  • Carbs 78.2g
  • Fibre 4.1g
  • Protein 49.1g
  • Salt 0.5g