Home Made Ribs with Fennel & Apple Slaw
I’ve been making BBQ’d ribs since I was a little kid about 9 yrs old. I used to stand outside in the winter in my purple parka, surrounded by snow, turning and basting the ribs at the gas grill my industrial engineer Dad installed to our home gas line. I thought that was Genius! No tanks to refill and you never ran out of gas.
My family would get so happy when I made these. I remember the first sauce I made from scratch using about 10 thousand ingredients. This perfected version only has about 20 if you include the spice rub. You can use store bought sauce or make your own. I don’t do them on the grill anymore. These are braised in the oven and get really tender and fall apart when they’re done.
Pre heat oven to 325
For the spice rub:
In a mixing bowl, combine 1 cup brown sugar, 1 tsp smoked paprika, 1 tsp sweet paprika, 1 tsp Ancho chili powder, 2 tsp garlic powder or granulated garlic, 1 tsp kosher salt, 1 tsp celery salt, 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chipotle powder, 2 bay leaves.
Chop 1 large sweet onion into small dice. Smash open a few garlic cloves.
Using cold water, wash & dry ribs and slice into 2 -3 rib sections.
Place them in a roasting pan and sprinkle with the spice rub along with chopped onions, garlic and a couple of bay leaves.
Cover tightly with foil and bake at 325 for 2 1/2 - 3 hours.
Once they’re cooked, open a corner of the foil and pour off some of the accumulated liquid. (Peeling away just a corner of the foil is the easiest way to tip the pan without the ribs falling into the sink).
Remove foil, coat with BBQ sauce and bake another 30 minutes, uncovered, adding more sauce every 5 minutes.
My favorite store bought BBQ sauce is Trader Joes or Bulls Eye doctored up with extra garlic, ketchup and molasses.
Sauce from scratch is easy: In a sauce pan 1/2 chopped onion and 3 smashed garlic cloves with 1 tblsp butter. Let the onions & garlic cook for a minute, then add 1 small can tomato paste, 2 cups water, 1/2 cup molasses, 1 cup ketchup, 1 tblsp liquid smoke, 1/2 cup cider vinegar, 1 tblsp hot sauce, 1/2 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup maple syrup, dash of chili powder, dash of cayenne, 1/2 tsp paprika, and 1 tblsp worcestershire sauce. Cook this in the sauce pan for about 25 minutes on low to thicken.
For the fennel slaw: Chop apples and slice fennel thin. Squeeze 1 lemon over all the cut pieces to prevent browning. Add 1 chopped shallot, salt & pepper, 2 tblsp plain yogurt, 1 tblsp mayo, a sprinkle of dill, 1/2 tsp sugar or honey, a dash of cayenne and toss to combine. Yum!