Friday, 15 April 2005

Pork Ribs with Chilli Plum Sauce

Until I can take a better picture of a better cut of ribs for this post, we'll have to bear the pathetic looking ribs above. Though mind you, it sold out very fast when I took it to a friend's party. The meat cut most suitable for this is meaty pork ribs preferably with the skin still on. The day I made this I was in a panic because I can't find the right cut so I had to make do with these spare ribs from the supermarket.

I love the tangy-sweetish taste the plum sauce imparts and the hint of spiciness from the chilli sauce. The recipe is good also for barbecues or oven grills. You just have to oven bake it first to tenderise and thoroughly cook the meat then brown it in the barbecue or grill. That's now my standard cooking method for ribs ever since I read it from an American cookbook. This one, however, is adapted from the Australian Women's Weekly's Chinese Cooking Class cookbook.

Pork Ribs with Chilli Plum Sauce

750 g  meaty pork ribs
1 Tbsp oyster sauce
2 Tbsp cooking wine (dry sherry or rice wine)
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp fermented black beans
1 1/2 tsp five spice powder
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/4 tsp salt

*Chilli Plum Sauce:
3/4 cup bottled plum sauce
1/2 tsp chilli sauce
2 tsp oil
1 clove garlic - minced
1/2 tsp grated ginger
2 shallots (sibuyas tagalog) - chopped
1/3 cup stock
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp cornflour

*For the Chilli Plum Sauce:
  1. In a saucepan, heat oil and saute garlic, ginger, and shallots. Cook over gentle heat for 1 minute.
  2. Remove from heat. Add plum sauce and chilli sauce. Mix until combined.
  3. Add combined water, crumbled stock cube, soy sauce, and cornflour.
  4. Return saucepan to heat. Stir until sauce boils and thickens. Remove from heat and set aside.

*For the pork ribs:
  1. Preheat oven to 200°C/fan 180°C/400°F. Cover black beans with water and soak for 15 minutes. Drain, mash with fork.
  2. In a bowl combine oyster sauce, cooking wine, soy sauce, mashed black beans, five spice powder, salt and pepper.
  3. Coat (or dip) each rib with black bean mixture. Put in a large baking pan, cover tightly with foil and bake for 1 hour or until fork tender. Turn ribs halfway through the baking.
  4. Remove foil and brush ribs with plum sauce. Return to oven and bake for another 25-30 minutes; turning the ribs halfway through. Or instead of baking further, grill in a barbecue until golden brown. Serve with remaining sauce.

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