Serves four to six

3 pounds short ribs, cut in ½-inch slices across the bones (flanken style)

1/3 cup soy sauce

1/3 cup brown sugar

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1/3 cup rice wine

1 tablespoon sesame oil

2 teaspoons black pepper

1¼ teaspoon cayenne or gochujang

1 medium onion, peeled and quartered

8 garlic cloves, peeled

1 small Asian pear, peeled, cored and quartered (or use an ordinary pear or tart apple)

1 1-inch chunk of ginger, peeled

2 teaspoons sesame seeds

Lettuce leaves

Sliced red or green hot pepper, optional

Ssamjang (spicy Korean soybean paste), for dipping, optional

Steamed rice, optional

1. Rinse short ribs in cold water, pat dry and place in a wide shallow bowl. In another bowl, mix together soy sauce, brown sugar, rice wine, sesame oil, black pepper and cayenne.

2. Put onion, garlic, pear and ginger in the work bowl of a food processor. Grind ingredients to a smooth purée, then add to soy sauce mixture. Add sesame seeds. Thin with ¼ cup water. Pour marinade over short ribs and mix well. Cover and refrigerate for at least two hours, or overnight. Bring to room temperature, drain and discard marinade.

3. Cook short ribs on a hot grill or under the broiler for two to three minutes per side, until nicely browned but juicy. Pile grilled meat on a platter and serve immediately with lettuce leaves on the side. Accompany with sliced hot peppers, ssamjang and steamed rice, if desired.

From David Tanis, The New York Times