This fall brought with it the harvest of two large pigs on the farm. Our larder and freezers are still bursting at the seams. I'm doing my very best to wade through Porklandia and I'm loving every minute.
Hence the recipe for these easy sweet and salty pork ribs. They're sweet and salty and easy. Lest you be confused.
They're also ridiculously moist, thanks to the simple technique of slow cooking them in stock. This renders them absolutely delicate and moist before we sauce and char them up a bit. It's a textural and flavorful wonderland. But enough chatting. Let's get to it (I assume you're here for the pork after all).
Easy Sweet and Salty Pork Ribs
It's best to start this recipe after breakfast so that it can cook all day. Alternatively, you can do the slow cooking over the weekend and sauce and reheat the ribs later on in the week.
You will need:
For the meat
- 4-5 pounds high-quality pork ribs (organic and pastured is best)
- 2 cups pork, chicken, vegetable or beef stock
For the sauce
- 1 cup tomato sauce or ketchup
- 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 4 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons minced garlic
- Sea salt and pepper, to taste
1. Lay the ribs on a baking sheet. Pour the stock over the top of the meat and cover the entire sheet in foil. This is creating a poaching environment of sorts where the meat will cook for the next few hours. Place in a 300-degree oven for 5-6 hours.
2. You'll know the pork is ready when it's, quite literally, falling off the bone. If you're a strong-willed person, you can avoid picking off small bits of pork to taste test. If you're not… well… you're in good company.
3. Mix all the ingredients for the sauce together in a bowl and give it a taste. Does it need more spice? More salt? More syrup? Adjust to your liking.
4. Slather it on, baby. I just use the back of a spoon to smoosh it all around that fatty pork. The acid from the tomato and vinegar really work to cut the fat of the ribs, while the syrup brings out the sweetness and caramelizes in the oven. Ya, buddy.
5. Broil in the oven until the top of the ribs are deeply darkened. This part of the method could certainly be done on a grill, which would impart even more flavor – but currently, our grill is under a sheet of ice and snow. So there you have it. Broil it is.
See? I told you these easy sweet and salty pork ribs were salty and sweet and easy. You're going to need extra napkins for this…