Monday, October 22, 2012

Barbecued Short Ribs (in the oven)

These ribs require a bit of advance planning, but the cooking is simple enough. I took the basic recipe from, America Cooks, The General Federation of Women's Clubs Cookbook, 1967. If you run across a copy in a charity shop, I recommend purchasing it-I've had wonderful results from everything I've tried.  For the non-cook, it is still a fascinating read, particularly if you're amused by mid-century cookery.

I changed a few things (added mustard powder, honey, stuff like that) but otherwise I kept pretty close to the directions-until the end. I looked at the pan, all the wonderful carmelised fats, spices...I had to deglaze it and reduce it to sauce. I had to. That turned out to be a good call, as I brushed it back on the ribs, returned them to the oven for five more minutes at high heat, and they took on the appearance of ribs cooked on a grill. Perfect. The original recipe was for spare ribs (pork) but it worked just dandy with beef.

I don't eat meat (nor does Danny) but Mr. ETB does, so these were his lunchbox treat this week-or at least that was the intention. He just informed me they were demolished at lunch. He did offer to go out and purchase more for me to prepare. I guess he liked them.

You Will Need:

4 cloves garlic, crushed
1/2 cup soy sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 cup ketchup
1 onion, finely minced
Black pepper to taste (Mr. ETB likes quite a bit)
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard powder
1 tablespoon paprika

Mix all together, place in a plastic freezer bag with,
3-4 lbs. shortribs. Seal well (I always put the bag in a bowl in case it leaks), and let it sit in the fridge 24 hours.

Next day:

Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Arrange ribs in a roasting pan, and discard extra marinade. Cook ribs, uncovered at 450 degrees F. for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees F. and cook 1 1/2-2 hours longer, turning every half hour or so. When ribs are cooked through, remove to  a plate. Heat oven back to 400 degrees F.

Place pan on a fairly hot burner, add a splash of port, and stir, scrape, and do whatever you must to dislodge the cooked-on bits from the pan. When you've removed enough for a sauce, transfer it to a smaller pan, cook over high until reduced to a couple tablespoons. Brush this over the ribs, return them to the oven and let them cook five minutes longer. Tent with foil, let stand at least ten minutes before serving.

You should probably make more than you think you'll need.

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