Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Crockpot: Sweet n' Sour Country Ribs


Oh Everyday Food, you save me! I found this recipe in the October issue and initially didn't want to try it. However, I found myself getting bored with some of our standard meals, and while you can dress up a chicken breast 8 ways from Sunday, a chicken breast is still a chicken breast.

This meal is so good, and so easy. It's quite possibly the most un-labor intensive crockpot meal I've ever made, and there's plenty of room for tweaking. These ribs were so tender they literally fell apart. I can't wait to make these again.

Sweet n' Sour Country Ribs

1/2 c. ketchup
1/2 c. packed brown sugar
1/2 c. cider vinegar
1 T. mustard powder
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
Coarse salt and ground pepper
4 lbs. country-style pork ribs, separated into single ribs
barbeque sauce, for serving (optional)

In slow cooker, whisk together ketchup, brown sugar, vinegar, mustard powder, cayenne pepper, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper.

Add ribs to slow cooker and toss with sauce. Arrange ribs bone side up in a single row.

Cover, cook on high 6 hours or on low 10 hours.

Serve drizzled with pan juices and barbeque sauce. Serves 8.

(Oven method: Preheat oven to 350 F. Use a Dutch oven or oven-proof pot with tight-fitting lid. Add 1 cup water. Cover, bake until ribs are tender, 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Serve warm.)

Notes:
  • These were so good, but I felt like they were the slightest bit dry. To combat this next time, I'm doing two things: making sure my ribs are completely defrosted and doubling the gravy recipe. I took the ribs out of the freezer on Sunday night, but they were still frozen solid this morning. I read somewhere that putting frozen meat in the crock pot won't make the meat cook slower, but it'll come out dryer. These were still really tender, but I felt there was a dry taste about them more than anything else. I think doubling the gravy will make a huge difference.
  • My crock pot isn't large enough to arrange more than 3 ribs in a row. I piled them all on top of one another and they still came out great.
  • I was worried that with ground pepper, cayenne pepper, and mustard powder that these would be too spicy for my husband. They weren't. If you prefer more of a zing, definitely add a little more of both spices to the gravy.
  • This meal tastes great on its own, but is absolutely amazing with barbeque sauce. We used the smoked apple & hickory sauce we picked up on our honeymoon and the flavors blended so, so well. It was positively serendipitous!

1 comment:

  1. OMG. These sounds phenomenal. I am going to make them for our football party next weekend. I figure I can drag my ass out of bed early to throw some stuff in a crockpot!

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