I made braised pork ribs the other day. Although Yoon and I have made braised pork ribs before, I had never made them on my own before this occasion. Also, I sort of made up this recipe (with a bit of glancing at other’s recipes, of course), so I’m proud of myself. Extremely vague recipe follows.
First, prepare the rub: Lots of brown sugar, salt, pepper, onion powder, cayenne pepper, chilli powder, coriander, thyme, toasted cumin, ground mustard. Put it in a largish container with a lid.
Cut up the ribs into manageable pieces (one or two ribs per piece), throw them in a colander and rinse them carefully under running water. Pat dry.
Throw the ribs in the container and shaka, shaka, shaka until thoroughly coated. Then leave sitting in the fridge for a few hours.
Wait, wait, wait.
Now, 3 hours before the meal is to be served, spring into action again.
Get the braising liquid heated up and ready to go: In a pot of its own put beef broth, apple cider, just a wee bit of maple syrup, 2 sticks of butter, and worcestershire sauce. I also put in homemade ketchup (tastes nothing like store ketchup), which Yoon had made a while ago using the recipe from this excellent cookbook. If you don’t have any of this handy, you could wing it by throwing in other yummy spices that strike your fancy.
Get that braising liquid heated up.
While it’s heating, take a large pot with a lid. Coat bottom of pot with olive oil and heat for a while. Then throw in the ribs and brown for about 10 minutes on high heat. Throw in chopped garlic halfway through.
After 10 minutes, deglaze the pot with white wine. Then pour in the braising liquid. The ribs ought to be completely submerged in the braising liquid. (So when you’re preparing the braising liquid, you should anticipate that you’re going to need enough liquid to completely cover the ribs.)
Put the lid on and simmer at very low heat for about 2 hours. The meat should be just about falling off the bone when it’s done.
Remove the meat from the braising liquid. Let sit for 5 minutes on a cooking tray, and then put in a closed container so that it doesn’t dry out.
Now, turn the heat up on that braising liquid and boil the shit out of it until it gets reduced to a thick sauce. It should smell great at this point, since now it also contains essence o’ pork.
After the sauce has been reduced, turn the broiler in your oven on. Place the ribs on a cooking tray, liberally coat them with the sauce, and then stick them in the broiler. Please note that this is the point at which you’re most likely to fuck up the meal: They’ll burn to a crisp in the broiler if you’re not very careful. I only needed 3 minutes to finish mine, but you should just use your own eyes to judge things, checking very regularly.
Remove from broiler, add a bit more sauce, and serve!
Since the sauce is a bit sweet, I chose to serve the ribs with a salad lightly coated in a slightly sharp dressing, for contrast. It’s also nice to have some yummy bread that you can use to mop up all that sauce.
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