I know what you’re thinking: “No chocolate? And it isn’t even dessert??” What is the world coming to? The fact of the matter is that no matter how much I wish otherwise I cannot live on dessert alone (don’t think I haven’t tried!). And if I can’t live on dessert alone, there is simply no hope of “Prince Charming” being sustained by sweets.
Over the weekend I usually try to make something in a large enough quantity that “Prince Charming” has easily accessible and readily re-heatable options for lunch during the week. These ribs fit the bill perfectly because they are quick and easy to prepare and I can quite literally forget them in the pot until we are ready for dinner.
Here’s your recipe; let’s dive right in.
Part 1: The Sauce
The most time consuming part of this (if you can call it that) is assembling the sauce; and all that consists of is whisking together all of the ingredients.
I like to start with the brown sugar right in the bottom of the bowl- make sure it is nice and firmly packed; the sugar balances out the spices and the tang of the vinegar so we don’t want to skimp.
Next I add in the vinegar. I prefer apple cider vinegar, especially when I’m making pork ribs (which is my preference), but you could use white wine vinegar – or even a red wine vinegar if you like.
I like to get the minced garlic in early so it can permeate the mixture as much as possible before cook time. This is also a good time to get our Worcestershire sauce and liquid smoke added to the mix. This time around I chose Mesquite liquid smoke, but you can pick whatever flavor you fancy. Hickory is always a welcome flavor addition, too. We’ll give this a stir at this point to dissolve the sugar and get the garlic mixed in.
Now we’re going to whisk in the beer. Now, let me be absolutely clear on this. I am not now, nor have I ever been, a beer drinker. However, the alcohol content helps to tenderize the meat and it extracts the alcohol soluble flavors from all the ingredients. That being said, if you are a beer drinker choose one that you really enjoy drinking to enhance the flavor of this recipe.
Next we’ll whisk in the tomato paste; this will not only provide more flavor but it will also thicken our sauce so it can really stick to the ribs.
Lastly, let’s get all the dry seasonings into the sauce. I encourage you to play with the proportion of these or swap the spices I chose for others that you enjoy more. You can really make this sauce your own with a few tweaks.
That’s all there is to our BBQ sauce. We can use it right away or stash it in the refrigerator for another time.
Part 2: The Ribs
Before we continue we are going to need approximately 2lbs of the rib variety of your choice; I’m partial to pork ribs so that is what we’ll be using from here on out. I’m also opposed to being messy when I eat (I know, absolute sacrilege to eat ribs without the mess, but I’m sure you’ll get over it) so I opt for the boneless country style pork ribs.
We’re just going to layer the ribs with some chopped onion into the bottom of our slow cooker. Nothing fancy, and it doesn’t have to be pretty.
Pour the BBQ sauce all over the top of the ribs. Don’t worry if it isn’t perfectly covered, it is going to cook down into every little crevice of those ribs. Put the cover on and turn the slow cooker on to the lowest setting.
That’s it. The end. Just walk away and take care of whatever you need to for the rest of the day, these will be perfectly fine by themselves. 6 to 8 hours later throw together some side dishes and enjoy. I like to serve my ribs with feta mashed potatoes and some Italian cut green beans.
Hopefully you have leftovers when you’re done because I promise you these ribs only get better with a little time in the refrigerator.
We were so impatient for dinner last night that I did not get a picture of the finished product. I will try to rectify that if I can.