Wednesday, March 9, 2011

PIGGIE! - Thai-Style Ribs

I made ribs for the first time! (It was very exciting.) As a ribs-lover I don't know why I have never made ribs myself, I guess I have always had my favorite ribs joints and it always seemed like something difficult to perfect. One of my favorite aspects of writing a blog is that it provokes me to try lots of new and different recipes that I might not otherwise have thought to attempt. Thus, I had a craving for ribs and ribs I set out to make! Onward!

I arrived at Safeway (I am usually a Trader Joe's devotee but this called for a super market) eager and well-prepared, list in hand. I happily trotted over to the meat section and began the search for spare-ribs. My first quandary arose when I looked at my recipe (c/o Lobel's Meat Bible) which clearly stated that I should have my butcher cut "across the bone into 2-3 inch 'racks,' each rack cut" into individual riblets. Well, if you've ever been to Safeway (no offense to Safeway) you would know that when you look around for a butcher there is nary a one to be found and unfortunately, the Local Butcher Shop is not yet open. So, I decided to make the most of it and forge forth as my own butcher with a 3-pound rack of spare ribs. 

For the marinade: Combine 1 cup sliced shallots, roughly one head of garlic (peeled and chopped), 1 cup cilantro, 2 tablespoons fish sauce, 6 tablespoons soy sauce, a 3-inch piece of ginger chopped, 2 stalks of lemongrass, 1 teaspoon each salt and pepper and 2 tablespoons brown sugar in a blender - oh and a good dollop of sriracha. The marinade is ready to go!

*Side note - I tinkered with the original recipe a bit, throwing in lemongrass and sriracha, etc.
At this point I realized I had to "butcher" the ribs. Which ended up being more like a rib massacre, but the result was fine, there were individual ribs . . . definitely not uniform in size . . . and there may have been a few pieces of meat that didn't seem close enough to any bone to truly belong to the rib so I just cut those off and made little boneless ribs. Cut to the chase - I threw the random meat bits into a ziploc bag with the marinade and stuck it in the fridge for 7 hours.
Preheat the oven to 350. Spread the ribs out on a baking sheet (I needed two). Put the ribs in the oven for an hour. Eat up! The recipe calls for a dipping sauce which I didn't make, but it sounded lovely. I served the ribs with rice that I cooked with lemongrass and a little cucumber salad (sliced persian cucumbers, a handful of chopped cilantro and mint, 1 teaspoon of fish sauce, 6 tablespoons rice wine vinegar).

1 comment:

  1. Good for you! (Not so good for poor old Babe.) Last night I made "broccoli bake". I meant to make a double portion so as to have some to take to work for lunch today, but I made a bit more than double. However, it turned out so good that I ate half of it anyway, and now will be forced to shovel in the other half today for lunch. I mean, you can't just leave a quarter sitting there all lonely, now, can you?

    Any suggestions as to how to rid one's small apartment of baked broccoli smell in less than three days?