Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Recipe: BBQ Country Ribs in Crock Pot

Who isn't always looking for more ways to enjoy barbecue? Especially as we seem to finally be thawing out of the coldest winter I've personally experienced.

Now, before you barbecue purists have a coronary, I'm aware this isn't true barbecue. It's called barbecue because the recipe calls for a bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce. There's no slow cooking over coals and you don't need a smoker to make this. All you need are a few inexpensive ingredients and a slow cooker like a Crock Pot.

"Country-style" pork ribs

Where I live, beef is expensive. More expensive in general than it was in California. Which I find odd. For example, in California tri-tip roasts went on sale regularly for as little as $3 a pound. You'd have to trim the roast yourself, but it's easy to trim a tri-tip. Here in southern Utah County, I've never seen tri-tip sell for less than $5.99 a pound. Costco sells tri-tip for $5.99–6.99.

But pork, pork sells for cheap here. Especially Boston butt or picnic roasts (I think they're the same cut). You can get picnic roasts for .99 a pound. Pork ribs, St. Louis or baby-back, sell for as little as $2.50 a pound. "Country-style" pork ribs go for as little as $2.00.

Before we get to the recipe, just what is a "country-style" pork rib? This from Pork Be Inspired:
Country-style ribs are cut from the sirloin or rib end of the pork loin. The meatiest variety of ribs, country-style ribs are sold either as “slabs” or in individual servings. These pork ribs are perfect for those who want to use a knife and fork. 
On to the recipe. I found it on Cooks.com.

3–4 pounds of country-style pork ribs, boneless or with bone
1 onion, sliced
3–4 cloves of garlic, minced
16 oz. of your favorite BBQ sauce

Salt and pepper the ribs and place them on a roasting pan under a hot broiler. Broil for about 15 minutes, give or take 5 minutes (see note below). Drain off grease if necessary.

Place the onion in the bottom of the slow cooker, put the ribs on the onion, sprinkle the minced garlic over the ribs, and cover with the BBQ sauce.

Cook on low for about 6 hours, depending on your slow cooker. Add a cup of hot broth with a tablespoon of flour stirred in the last hour of cooking if you want a gravy to serve with the ribs.

My comments:

I made this a couple of days ago, following the recipe to a T. I left it in our Crock Pot for 6½ hours. While delicious, the meat was a little overcooked. Next time I'll skip the broiling and just trim the ribs and stick 'em in the Crock Pot. I didn't bother thickening the sauce. I just had a plate for lunch and they were just as good as when they were fresh out of the Crock Pot.

I used 4–5 oz. of leftover homemade BBQ sauce and ¾ of a bottle of Sweet Baby Ray's original sauce. I used Ray's because everyone seems to love it. I try to stay away from corn syrup-based products like Ray's, but it was on sale. I highly recommend the homemade stuff, especially if you like a sweet/spicy BBQ sauce. Bottled sauce is handy if you're in a hurry.

Serve this with some Grillin' Beans and a coleslaw salad and you've got a killer meal!