Since I’m not much of a meat eater, my P.S. is thrilled when I get meat-motivated and request a cut from the grocery to make a recipe. I do love pork in all its mutations, and crave some good ribs occasionally. I asked my P.S. (Pork Supplier/hubby) to bring home ribs and he brought me home a nice rack. A rack of ribs.
I thought I might try a new recipe for ribs in the slow cooker, but the first 5 or 6 recipes I looked at all had a bottle of barbecue sauce listed in the ingredients. What? Um, that’s not a recipe. I wanted a real sauce from scratch recipe so that I felt like I actually made the ribs. Famous Dave or KC was not going to get credit for my cooking! I eventually found a recipe that had ingredients that sounded like my kind of seasonings, and commenced to saucing.
I measured the ingredients for the sauce into a bowl and whisked until all of the mustard was integrated. Mustard was the holdout, the rest played nicely with others and dissolved easily.
I did laugh out loud when I went looking for our malt vinegar, assuming we must have some since we have about 8 other kinds of vinegars in that cupboard. (My P.S. might be a vinegar hoarder). I couldn’t find a bottle labeled “Malt Vinegar” but I did find one labeled “Fish and Chips Vinegar”. I read the ingredients and it simply said “malt vinegar”. For silly! That should have been on the label instead, because people who use malt vinegar (Canadians for example) would know it’s for their fish and chips.*eyeroll*
Now that I was properly sauced (yet sober) I turned to handling the meat. My recipe directed me to cut them into individual ribs, but I preferred to cut them into groups of two or three. That done, I put them bone side down into the skillet I’d heated with a tablespoon of oil. I seared each side of the ribs, making sure they were nicely browned for flavor.
Searing done, I put the ribs into my slow cooker and covered the meat with the onion I had sliced. I poured the BBQ sauce over the top of the ribs and put the pan on the base of the slow cooker. I covered it with the lid and left it on the high setting for 4 hours.
The ribs were falling apart done when I checked them 4 hours later. I turned the heat down to low for another hour, to keep them hot until dinner. The flavor of the ribs was my idea of perfection. The sauce was zesty with the vinegar and mustard flavors, yet a little sweet from the brown sugar. The salt level wasn’t overbearing with the soy sauce; I hadn’t added any other salt to the recipe. We loved the taste and made a big dent in the pile of ribs for dinner. I think we need to eat these ribs more often!
My only complaint on the dish was the way the butcher had cut the ribs. They hadn’t done a good job of trimming the knuckles (my P.S.’s word, I don’t know if they’re actually knuckles) so we had some small, odd pieces of bone to deal with. The meat fell off the ribs anyway, but those bones were a small annoyance. One we can prevent by using a better butcher next time. Lesson learned. I also learned my lesson when I asked my P.S. for a punchline to add to the title of this post. Wanted: new consultant.
3# pork ribs
1 tablespoon oil
1 medium onion; sliced
1 cup ketchup
2/3 cup soy sauce
¼ cup malt vinegar
1/3 cup brown sugar
¼ cup yellow mustard
Black pepper; to taste
Mix sauce ingredients with a whisk until smooth.
Cut the ribs into sections of 2 or 3 ribs.
Heat a large skillet with a tablespoon of oil. Sear first the bone side of the ribs, then the meat side until dark brown.
Place the ribs into a slow cooker or crockpot then cover with the sliced onions. Pour the sauce over the top of the ribs and cover. Cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 7-8 hours.