In just a few hours, these ribs will be our dinner.
This morning, Danny created a spice rub, just for the heck of it. After he did the dishes, he started playing. A little coriander, a touch of cinnamon, some ground coffee, a little chipotle.
I love when he plays with food.
After smelling the spice rub, I said, “Hey, this is going to be good. Want to make it a blog post?”
Of course, he said.
And then we thought, why make you wait until week or two until we could finish it and do it up right? Why not now?
Just in case you want to make this for Cinco de Mayo. Or this weekend.
Here it is.
BRAISED RIBS WITH SPICE RUB
As you might know, we have been working with McCormick Gourmet for the past few months. We really do like the quality of their spices, as well as the fact that the entire line is gluten-free. Because we agreed to work with them for a few months, they sent us a huge batch of spices. This has given us a chance to play, to throw things together, to make rubs and mixes we might not have before.
If you have only a few old spices in your cupboard, may we suggest you buy some more? Having more than three in the kitchen makes for experimentation, like this spice rub Danny threw together this morning.
2 tablespoons ground coriander
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons Saigon cinnamon
1 tablespoons chipotle powder
3 tablespoons ancho chile pepper
1 tablespoon oregano
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground coffee
2 tablespoons safflower oil
5 pounds pork ribs
1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped
3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
7 ounces (1/2 can) diced tomatoes
1 bay leaf (Mediterranean, if possible)
2 quarts chicken stock (or enough to cover the ribs)
Making the spice rub. Set a small skillet over medium heat. Put all the spices into the hot skillet and toast them, moving around the skillet frequently to insure they don’t burn, until you can smell all the spices, about 1 minute. (McCormick also has a line of roasted and toasted spices, if you want to skip this step.) Combine all the spices in a bowl.
Marinating the ribs. Rub the spice mixture evenly over the ribs. Let the ribs sit for an hour at room temperature (or overnight in the refrigerator if you have time) to absorb the flavors.
Searing the ribs. Set a skillet over medium-high heat. Pour in the safflower oil. Sear 1/2 of the ribs in the hot oil until a crust starts to form on the bottom, about 3 minutes, then flip them and sear the other side, also about 3 minutes. Put them into a slow cooker. Sear the rest of the ribs and put them in the slow cooker.
Caramelizing the onion. Put the onion into the hot fat in the skillet. Cook the onions, stirring, until they are browned, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until you can smell the garlic, about 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and bring the liquid to a boil.
Cooking the ribs. Add the onion-garlic-tomato mixture to the slow cooker. Put in the bay leaf. Pour in enough chicken stock to cover the ribs, plus 1 inch more. Cook on low until the ribs are fall-apart tender, about 3 to 4 hours.
Feeds 6. (Or, in our case, dinner tonight and plenty of leftovers for tomorrow.)
If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can make these in a Dutch oven or large pot in the oven. Cook them at 350°. This will also take about 3 to 4 hours, depending on your oven.
Also, we feel this spice rub would be good on almost anything else: steak, roast chicken, salmon, tilapia, and roasted tofu, for starters.