Worth the Wait

This is not a recipe to start at 4:15pm on a Tuesday.
This is not a recipe to skimp on.
This is not a recipe to brush aside because its "too complicated."

Sure, there are lots of steps and requires lots of patience, but its not a difficult recipe to make! If you're looking for a really special dish to make, this is the one. I can say this since it wasn't my recipe, but these ribs are amazing. Really. Totally worth all of the work.

I originally saw this recipe on "Paula's Party" on the Food Network when Sugar Ray Leonard was a guest. Then, about 4 years ago, I made them for my sister and brother-in-law as a "thanks" for letting me take a Spring Break vacation at their house in Arizona. Mark then said they were the best ribs he's ever had, and since he's quite the connoisseur of ribs, then I took this as a pretty high compliment!

I told Steve that I was making a recipe from Sugar Ray Leonard and he started laughing. Then I told him I was making ribs and he did this:

Here's what he was getting so excited about:

Here's a great veggie to go along with the ribs:

And here are the recipes!

Finger Lickin' Ribs
From Paula Deen, who featured the recipe from Sugar Ray Leonard
1 rack ribs, about 3 pounds (not baby-back, the full-size)

Dry Rub
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup white sugar
1/4 cups salt
2 Tablespoons ground black pepper
2 Tablespoons paprika

Barbeque Sauce
1 cup ketchup
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 Tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 Tablespoon molasses
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1 teaspoon dried onion flakes
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes

Combine all of the dry rub ingredients in a small bowl. Rub onto all sides of the ribs. There may be some leftover, but you should rub a good amount in, and then also leave some excess on top, so that as it marinates, even more can be integrated into the meat. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap and set on a baking sheet (with a rim, just in case...). Marinate in fridge for 8 hours or overnight.

Heat oven to 275 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil, unwrap ribs, and place in pan. Cover tightly with additional foil and roast for 2.5 hours.

While ribs are roasting, make barbeque sauce. (If you want the sauce to pack a little more punch, make it at the same time you apply the dry rub to the ribs and then let it sit in the fridge.) Combine all ingredients and bring to a gentle boil. Simmer on low for 25 minutes, being careful to not let it scorch.

Once ribs are finished roasting, heat the grill. Cook approximately 6 minutes on each side, until the thickest part registers 150-160 degrees. Remove from grill, cover with foil, and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Cut ribs apart into 2-rib sections, cutting down right next to the bone. Reheat barbeque sauce and serve alongside the ribs.

Serves 4

Sauteed Zucchini
4 medium zucchini (don't use huge ones; they tend to decline in flavor and texture)
2 Tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon olive oil
4 Tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese

Heat a saute pan over medium-high heat. While the pan heats, trim the ends off of zucchini, slice lengthwise, and then into 1/2-inch half-moon slices.

Add butter and oil to the pan, then add the zucchini. Don't stir it around too much, just enough to make sure its not sticking. Once the zucchini is nice and golden brown, turn off the heat and sprinkle the Parmesan over the top. Give one or two more stirs and serve.

Serves 4

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