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Quick and Easy Pork Back Ribs with Mashed Potato and Green Beans
If you have seen any of my previous recipes that I have posted, you will know that I am all about:
- Meals with few ingredients (but at the same time does not give up on flavour!)
- Meals that take a "short" amount of time
- Ingredients that are easily available in the kitchen or pantry
In the case of these ribs, "short" will be considered relative compared to the regular amount of time that it can take to make them. Many recipes call for the ribs to be put on a low-heat in the oven for 4 hours or so, however when you realise you want ribs for dinner, and a realistic dinner time is in about 2 hours, you don't want to start making a rib dinner at 5pm, to only be able to eat 9pm! So, that's why when see 2 hours for this rib dinner, it is considered "short" ;)
Also, my recipes are all about being able to mix up ingredients. In this case, if you have ribs but you don't have BBQ sauce, try combining other sauces that you may have that will go well together - Ketchup, Mustard etc. If you have ribs in the fridge, and other types of sauces, you can still make this meal!
Ingredients for the Meal
- 1 kg (or 2.2 lbs) Pork Back Ribs
- BBQ Sauce
- Black Pepper
- Brown Sugar
- 4 cloves Garlic
- 4 medium sized Potatoes, (chopped into quarters)
- Green beans, (or other veg side)
- Herbs, (optional)
- Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add some black pepper and a few pinches of brown sugar to the water.
- While water is boiling, cut your ribs into 3 or 4 even slices (depending on how large your pot is, you may not need to cut them as small but cut so they will be able to fit into your pot length-wise).
- Once water is boiling, place ribs into the pot, turn down to medium heat and cover. Let boil for about 45 minutes. During this time, I normally like to prep my other items - e.g: cut up potatoes, cut up vegetables, garlic etc.
- After 45 minutes, the ribs should be getting fairly tender. Turn the heat off on the pot. (don't throw out this water as it will be used for a side!) Pre-heat the oven to 375 degrees. During this time, place tin foil onto a cookie sheet so that it is fully covered, and then place the boiled ribs on top in the center of the foil.
- Using whatever sauce you choose (in my case my bbq sauce and ketchup), squirt enough sauce on each piece of rib until nicely covered. I used a spoon to brush the sauce all along the ribs. Once it is nicely covered with sauce, wrap the ribs with the foil so they are packaged nicely into the foil.
- Once the oven has pre-heated, place the wrapped up ribs into the center rack of the oven.
- After 40 minutes, take the ribs out of the oven, unwrap, and place some more sauce on top to give it the extra saucy-touch. Turn the heat down now to about 350 degrees. Wrap the ribs back again, and place in the oven for another 30 minutes.
- During this last 30 minutes, this is when I like to begin preparing my sides so that they will be finished cooking by the time the ribs are done and everything will still be nice and piping hot. Re-boil the water that you used for the ribs - we will boil the potatoes in this water too!
- Once water has boiled, place your chopped up potatoes into the pot until tender (so that you can put a fork through the potato with ease). As well, place 2 cloves of garlic into the water so that you will get some nice garlic mashed potatoes.
- Turn the heat on the potatoes to low once they have reached the soft consistency. Drain most of the water from the potatoes until you are only left with a few tablespoons in the pot. Add some milk to the potatoes (it depends on how many you have used but approximately 1 cup of milk for 4 medium sized potatoes), as well as 1 tablespoon of butter. Mash up the potatoes until fully combined and fluffy. (If you don't have a masher like myself, using a fork to push against each potato piece works just as well). If you have some fresh herbs, this is also when you can add them in to the potatoes. Turn heat off of potatoes and remove pot from heat.
- While the potatoes are boiling in step 9, this is also when I would like to start my side (e.g: green beans). I would place some olive oil into a medium heat pan, followed by some chopped up garlic (about 2 cloves). Once heated, toss in the green beans until colour of beans turns a nice dark green. That is when you know they are cooked through.
- Your potatoes and vegetable side should take about 30 minutes - exactly the amount of time the ribs were going to finish from step 7. Don't worry though if you take slightly longer to complete your sides - the ribs will just continue to get more tender in the oven. Turn off the oven, and remove ribs from the oven and you now have yourself a full delicious dinner! Enjoy!
Finished Product with Ribs, Potatoes, and Green Beans
So what is the trick to making these tender yet quick ribs? It's all in the pre-boiling of the ribs! It makes the ribs soft during the boiling process. The best part is - after the boil, you know they are fully cooked through so you won't have to worry about the ribs not being cooked properly or undercooked while in the oven!
I hope you enjoy this meal as much as I did. As my partner would like to say, "they are fall-off-the-rib delicious!"