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Thursday, July 14, 2011

How to Make Ribs in the Oven

A few weeks ago at the Target check-out, I noticed that the beefy man behind me had only two things in his cart: about ten cartons of eggs and a pile of ribs. I thought, Hmmm, are ribs cheap here? Yesterday I found that they were on sale for $2.50/lb. These are St. Louis-cut ribs  (the longer ribs, not baby back; go to http://www.amazingribs.com/recipes/porknography/pork_cuts.html for all you'll ever want to know about pork). Each slab is about 3 or 4 lbs, just the right size for my family of four.

This was really a cooking triumph for me, and so easy! I've never made ribs before. I'm really not a big meat person. If it weren't for my meat-loving husband, who craves it, and my children, who need protein, I would not bother. Before, having ribs would involve asking the husband to make them. He would have to get them from Costco (which sells them in a package of three slabs) and fire up his charcoal barbecue. The whole production could take hours considering the wind in Foster City. Usually by the time he produces the ribs, I've filled up on potato salad and am over the whole rib thing. No more. Ladies, take the husband out of the equation and make the ribs yourself!

Oven-Baked Ribs

3 lbs of ribs
salt and pepper
1T olive oil
1/2 t garlic powder
1/2 t cumin
1/2 t celery salt
3/4 c ketchup
2T apple cider vinegar
2T soy sauce
2T molasses
1/3 c orange juice

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Split slab of ribs in half. Rinse and pat dry with a paper towel. Lay the ribs fat side up on a foiled-lined sheet pan. Season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 45 minutes.

Prepare the barbecue sauce: Heat olive oil in a saucepan. Add garlic powder, cumin, and celery salt. Heat for about 30 seconds. Add other ingredients and whisk over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Let sauce cool and thicken.

After the initial 45 minutes, transfer ribs to a large (9" x 13") casserole dish. Arrange ribs in a single layer (you may need to cut one of the half slabs in half again) and pour sauce over the whole thing. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour. Baste the ribs with sauce twice during the hour. Then remove foil and bake another 15 - 30 mins.

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