Easy Peasy Pork Ribs (No photo, ate too fast)

from: Daniel Larkin
to: “Jamey W. Bennett” 

Just because the mother of my child is vegetarian doesn’t mean I can’t make ribs on Mother’s Day.  Jenny wanted to have her parents over for Mother’s Day and grill veggie burgers.  And since Jenny’s mother (who eats vegetarian 90% of the time) is always stealing one of my ribs when we go to Roadhouse, I decided to be the good son in-law and grill 3 lbs of pork ribs for Judy.  She ate one rib.

I’ve never done ribs before, (except this one time when my buddy John and I cooked a few racks in a stone smoker we built during a camping trip) but I’ve slow cooked my share of meats at home before, so I felt comfortable.  I just applied basic methods and common sense, and hit a home run.

  • First, I peeled off the silver skin from the back of the ribs with a knife and some elbow grease.  It’s the tough stretch stuff on the underside.  (Why the butcher doesn’t do this, I’ll never know)
  • Then I sprinkled the ribs with a mix of brown sugar, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, black pepper and cinnamon.
  • Then, as the oven was preheating to 230º, I poured about two cups of vegetable stock and a beer into a stock pot, and squirted in a good dose of liquid smoke.
  • I laid the ribs in the stock pot with a tight fitting lid, but elevated them above the liquid by setting them on two ceramic pot-pie ramekins.  (For all my cooking, I don’t own a roasting pan.  Obviously, that’s the easiest thing to do.)
  • Then I let that shit go for 5 hours.  No need to baste or anything.  They were literally falling off the bone when I pulled them out.  And the juice!
  • I finished them off by brushing them with some BBQ sauce and grilling them on high flames for about 5 minutes, or until the sauce was caramelize.

I honestly should have taken a picture of these things, but I couldn’t stop eating long enough to wash my hands and get my camera.  Just trust me, they were friggin’ amazing!

German Pork Ribs!

from Daniel Larkin
to Jamey Bennett

I’m sure I’ve told you about the Octoberfest party Jenny and I are planning for this Fall.  We’ll have two 5-gallon kegs – the Octoberfest, which I entered into the TN Valley Competition (it took silver!), and the Bohemian Pilsner.  We’ll also be grilling all day. This is actually what inspired my recent crack at making sauerkraut (results still unknown).

Anyway, I’ve never used kraut for anything other than dousing a sausage, and I figured if I’m going to be making it I should find other ways to eat it.  I don’t think I can eat enough hot dogs to make it through two liters of sauerkraut.

So here’s what I did as a test.  This was just an amalgamation of other recipes and ingredients I found online.

I bought a 24 oz can of GOOD German sauerkraut and 2 pounds of country style pork ribs.  These aren’t the rack ribs you think of when someone says ribs.  They’re much larger and come sliced individually.

I salted the ribs and browned them in olive oil in a heavy duty pot.  Set ‘em aside.Tossed in a whole onion sliced and two green apples sliced and sauteed them in the oil and pork remnants.

Once the onions were translucent, I added all of the kraut (strained and drained) I also stirred in some caraway seed, a few Juniper berries and a heaping scoop of Grey Poupon Harvest Ground Mustard.

I sauteed this mix for another minute then removed half of it.  I set the ribs on top of the mixture and covered it with the remaining half of the kraut, apple and onion mix. Then I just dumped a full 12 oz bottle of Octoberfest beer, covered it with foil and the lid and baked it for 5 hours on 275º.  In all, prep time was almost nil.  It was less than 20 minutes between opening the ribs and closing the oven door behind them.

I didn’t take any pictures because it ain’t a pretty meal to look at, but the pork melts in your mouth and the kraut/onion/apple mix is ridiculous.  I served it all with mashed red potatoes with butter, cream, rosemary and thyme. I’m thinking this is what I might make for the Octoberfest party.

TwoDudes exclusive update.  Put the leftovers spread on a hoagie roll with a generous slathering of course mustard, and you’ll be in pig heaven!