The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.  MCM prepped the chops, tuna, and ribs; Uncle Bob started the salad, polenta, and wild rice; I downloaded Bumble for Mike on his cell phone.

JUST FYI – Salad, polenta and wild rice are not very difficult.  The trick to the polenta is to throw a generous amount of truffle butter on top once cooked.

Bumble can be a little more complicated.  If you have been off the market for a while and suddenly find yourself back on, the idea of having to be swiped on might take some getting used to. As for myself, a relatively well adjusted, consciousness person, I was not ready for on-line dating.  But it’s a great way to get back out there.

As in anything in life, prep is critical.  The tuna and chops are pretty straightforward.  For the ribs it’s the Chinese 5 spice that is the key.  Salt and pepper 2-3 lbs. ribs and then coat with the 5 spice and sear the ribs in oil for color. 

The not so secret, secret, to prep on Bumble is to come up with some quality pics and a solid intro.  Fortunately, with Mike there was a lot to work with, but you have to be sensible.  Mike is predominately a world class chef who caters private dinners for movie stars.  He’s also a real estate developer, and a wonderful father.  He’s kind, considerate, hilarious, and good natured.  The problem is how to get all that into an app and make it seem organic.

Deglazing the pan with 2 cups of red wine is much easier.  Place the fond in a large pan and simmer with 1.5 boxes beef stock, 2 shallots, 5 garlic cloves, 2 sprigs thyme, and 2 sprigs rosemary.  Add ribs, cover, place in oven at 350 for 2-2.5 hrs. until tender.

While baking the ribs we grabbed pics from three key areas: outdoor cooking (rugged but skilled), high-desert travel (rugged but sophisticated), Kilimanjaro book on chest while napping on Roche Bobois sofa (rugged by cultured) – there is a theme developing here.  All real pictures, and not staged.  The writing of the actual intro was the hardest part.  For that we reached out to a real writer.  A TV guy Uncle Bob knows.  It was a masterpiece.  Like watching an episode of “That’s Incredible” unfold in the best way possible.

Transfer ribs to a baking sheet lined with foil.  Mix hoisin (1/2 cup), sweet chili sauce (1/4 cup) and ½ tbs. siracha, coat ribs in sauce and broil for 1 to 2 min until sugars are caramelized.

Pull ribs and rest for 10 min, garnish with chopped peanuts and scallions.

There are very few things better than Chinese ribs.  The only thing I can think of would be enjoying them with good friends while you drink wine, eat cake, and get them back on the horse.