I’m a little bit fickle, I’ll admit, with my continuing declarations about the world’s best ribs. That’s because almost every good rack of ribs is the best ribs I’ve ever tasted. You could rub motor oil on a rack of ribs, grill them, and they’d make my blog. I’m quite sure I’ve declared one rib preparation or another “The World’s Best Ribs” on several occasions in this forum alone. But this time I’m pretty sure I’m sharing the world’s best ribs recipe with you. Well, that is, at least until next time.
Hawaiian preparations are always some of the best with ribs — the smoky, fatty richness of the ribs blending perfectly with the sweetness and complex flavors of tropical fruits. One of the best racks I cook includes a marinade/glaze of coconut syrup, pineapple juice and fermented Chinese black beans. The particular recipe below, prepared in the video above, takes its cue from Korean kalbi. Serve it with the monster good Asian red cabbage slaw to win friends and influence people. For four people:
Hawaiian Soy Glazed Ribs
1 large rack baby back ribs
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 garlic cloves, peeled and grated on a Microplane grater (or minced)
1-inch piece of ginger, grated on a Microplane grater (or minced)
1 tsp sesame oil
a few shakes crushed red pepper
1 tbsp butter
Peel membrane off the back of the rib rack (use a flat head screwdriver to get started). Cut rack into two or three sections. Salt and pepper the ribs while you make the marinade.
Put brown sugar and soy sauce in a small saucepan with a little water. Add garlic and ginger over medium heat, and simmer until the sauce is thickened. Remove from heat, stir in sesame oil and red pepper, then fold in 1 tbsp butter.
When sauce cools, use half to baste the ribs and marinate an hour at room temperature or overnight in the fridge. Heat a gas grill to medium. Put the ribs on the grill and cook for about 20 minutes on each side, basting frequently with the reserved marinade to create a nice glaze. Cut mini-racks into individual ribs and serve with monster good Asian slaw.
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Monster Good Asian Slaw
1/2 small head red cabbage, grated or finely shredded
3 scallions, sliced into 1-inch segments and then slivered lengthwise
1 small carrot, peeled and grated
2 tbsp rice wine vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp grapeseed oil
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
1 tbsp mayonnaise
salt & pepper
In a large bowl, toss the cabbage, scallions and carrot. Add remaining ingredients and mix thoroughly. Add salt and pepper to taste. Chill in the fridge until ready to serve.
Beverage suggestion: Kona Brewing Company Longboard Island Lager, a nice fruity viognier from California’s Central Coast (I like Andrew Murray), mai tai, Anchor Steam