I am part of a cookbook club sponsored by Food52 on Facebook. Each month we cook from a different cookbook and post our results on the Facebook page. This month’s book is David Leibovitz’s My Paris Kitchen. David is an American in Paris and his cooking style reflects his unique take on his adopted city. Here he combines the American’s love of barbecue with a French twist of making a caramel sauce. But forget the usual cream. David uses beer and bourbon.
The only thing difficult or scary about this recipe is when you add the beer to the caramelized sugar. The mixture seizes up with solid chunks of sugar. Do not worry about this as they dissolve in the oven as you cook the ribs. A slow braise in the oven turns the ribs into succulent browned beauties. I used country style ribs but I think David used baby back ribs.
Sorry about the blurry photo, but I really liked this booth at an antique mall that I visited recently; especially the Lake Rules sign.
But this is the sign that I bought recently. My entrance porch is much too shady for real flowers so I found these faux lavender bunches that look almost real. If only I could harness the scent.
Here is the recipe for the Caramel Pork Ribs. They are worth the effort.
CARAMEL PORK RIBS (David Lebovitz My Paris Kitchen)
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar, light or dark
- 3/4 cup beer
- 1/4 cup bourbon
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 2 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 (1/2-inch/2cm) piece ginger, peeled and minced
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons harissa, Sriracha sauce, or another hot sauce
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
- 4 pounds pork ribs, cut into 3- or 4-rib portions
- Preheat the oven to 350 F.
- Spread the granulated sugar in an even layer over the bottom of a large pot with a cover, such as a roasting pan or a Dutch oven. Cook the sugar over medium heat until it starts to melt around the edges. When the liquefied sugar just starts to darken to a pale copper color, gently stir the sugar inward and continue to cook, stirring until the sugar is completely moistened. Continue to cook the sugar, stirring infrequently, until all of it is a deep copper-colored liquid, similar in color to dark maple syrup, and smoking (but not burnt). Turn off the heat and stir in the brown sugar, then add the beer. The mixture will seize and harden, which is normal.
- Let the mixture cool down a bit, then stir in the bourbon, cider vinegar, ketchup, ginger, soy sauce, harissa, mustard, and pepper. Put the ribs in the pot and turn on the heat until the sauce boils and bubbles up. Turn the ribs a few times in the liquid, cover, and roast in the oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, until the ribs are tender. During the roasting, remove the pot from the oven and turn the ribs over two or three times.
- Remove the lid from the pot and continue to roast, turning the ribs a few times, for 30 minutes more, or until the juices have thickened a bit. Remove the ribs from the oven, skim any visible fat from the surface of the liquid, and serve.