I've recently become a rib addict. Its pretty hard to escape a chapter in some foodie's book about the ultimate BBQ experience. After reading Steingarten and Trillin I now salivate for tasty fall-off-the-bone ribs. Sometime this happens in the middle of the night!
There's just something so wonderfully barbaric about tearing your teeth into a rack of ribs. It is a time for me to dabble in hyper masculinity AND get completely messy. I wish I had discovered this phenomenon earlier and even enjoyed some quality father/daughter bonding time with a bib and some moist towelettes. I can't imagine anything better.
I have to thank Ayun for this recipe. I had the meat waiting but was pretty intimidated to touch it so she gave me an excuse. Ribs aren't just another hunk of meat, they are delicate enough to have mastery competitions on every food channel. These were good, very good. I have to say that my rib cooking technique needs a little work -- ok a lot. These weren't fall off the bone they were more like chew off the bone. Next time I'll try low and slow and hope for the best.
This is basically the same as you'll see on her blog but I changed it up a bit, probably not for the better
make a 'rub' (if you can call it that)
4 cloves of garlic
some lemon grass
grind some black pepper while you're at it
Blend in the food processor and inhale over the bowl -- delicious, but it gets even better
On the stove take about 1/3 C of sugar (I prefer Florida Natural but whatever works) and melt it pretty slowly and swirl it so it doesn't stick and burn. When it is all melted add about a 1/4 C of fish sauce and a crazy chemical reaction happens and it smells a little funky but when you let that cool and add it to your 'rub' your home will smell terrific. I have seen this same sugar fish sauce concoction in other recipes and I really think it is a winner with some 'meat-of-your-choice" over rice with scallions. You can probably figure out the rest of this story. You can marinade but I rarely have time or think ahead that far. I used baby backs but use this on any meat and it will probably be great. I like the typical cucumber/mirin/sesame salad to go with. This one is a winner.