My mum makes the best comfort food. One of my favourite things she makes is sticky spare ribs. Her recipe has a Chinese twist – lots of garlic, ginger, and she uses hoi sin sauce instead of barbecue glaze to give it a deep, plummy flavour.
I bought two packs of spare ribs with my field&flower meat box and was very excited to give them a go, having not had any ribs in my meat boxes for the past four months. Heeding mum’s recipe in my head, but using resources to hand, I ended up with a kind of Texan-Chinese fusion result.
Marinade your ribs for as long as possible in the following sauce. For 800g ribs I used:
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 red chilli,finely chopped
- 2 tsps minced ginger
- 2 tbsps soy sauce
- 2 tbsps honey
- 2 tbsps Shaoxing rice wine
- 2 tbsps hoi sin sauce – or substitute with ketchup
- 1 tsp five spice
I say 2 tbsps for most of the ingredients because really I was just using ‘sloshes’ (that’s a real measurement, right?). Roast your ribs at 160C for 90 minutes. My ribs were rather skinny and didn’t need much more heat – but you could turn it up for the last few minutes to make sure they go a bit charred.
I served the sticky ribs with a salad made of avocado, sweetcorn, tomatoes and cucumber with a mint dressing (shredded mint leaves, lemon juice, virgin olive oil and dash of balsamic), and potato wedges topped with cheese.
I love eating ribs! You just have to do away with any pretensions of cutlery, and use your hands. These were very delicious, but I would have turned all the ingredients up a notch to make them even tangier, sweeter and stickier. Give it a go.
One portion of spare ribs (about 400g) costs £3 from field&flower.