Country Style Pork Spareribs with Herbed Balsamic Glaze and Fresh Tomato Relish
6 country style pork spareribs, (about 5-6 lbs total)
Salt and pepper
1 tbsp. each: olive oil and butter
1 cup onion, cut into very thin 1-inch slices
2 tbsp. brown sugar
Large pinch salt
½ cup dry red wine
½ cup balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp. fresh rosemary, very finely chopped
2 tbsp. fresh thyme, very finely chopped
1 tbsp. freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 cup reserved pork broth, reserved
All remaining Sparerib glaze
2 cups fresh cherry tomatoes, cut in half through their stem ends
¼ cup fresh parsley, chopped
½ cup fresh basil, chopped
Salt and pepper, to taste
STEP 1:Prepare Grill: Several hours before spareribs are to be served, turn grill on to medium-high heat, or prepare charcoal grill to medium-high heat.
STEP 2:Grill spareribs: Place spareribs on a sheet pan covered with two layers of foil. Generously salt and pepper them. Grill spareribs until very nicely browned on all sides, taking care to not let them break apart. It is not important for the meat to fully cook them, just to get them nice and browned/marked. Remove foil used for raw spareribs and put the grilled ones on the clean foil.
STEP 3:Continue cooking spareribs in a slow cooker: After grilling, place the spareribs into a slow cooker and fill with enough water to just cover them. Add a generous spoonful of salt to the water. Turn slow cooker to its “Low” setting and simmer pork for about 2 hours or until the meat is completely tender. Set aside one cup of pork broth, then carefully remove meat to a rack on a sheet pan covered with foil. Allow meat to drip dry for a few minutes. Brush glaze on all sides of spareribs and let dry for a couple minutes then brush them again. Do this several times until the ribs are a deep rich brown color.* Place the spareribs into a preheated 350F oven, bake for about 30 minutes or until heated through.
STEP 4:Make Glaze: Prepare glaze while meat simmers. Heat the butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic and stir and cook for a minute or two. Add the onion slices and stir and cook several minutes or until they are translucent and soft. Reduce heat to medium-low and add the sugar. Cook onions until they are a deeper shade of brown, 6 or 7 minutes or so. Add the salt, red wine, and vinegar. Simmer glaze for several minutes or until it has reduced and thickened a little. Remove from heat, add herbs and pepper, then set aside until spareribs are tender.
STEP 5:Make relish once spareribs have been glazed and are in the oven: Heat a small sauce pan over medium heat. Add the olive oil and, when it is hot, add the minced garlic. Stir and cook the garlic for a minute or just until it is golden. Add pork broth and the rest of the glaze. Increase heat to high, then reduce to a simmer once sauce boils. Reduce liquid until it is fairly thick, allow to cool slightly, then add the tomatoes and herbs.
STEP 6:Serve recipe: Place each of the six hot spare ribs onto a serving plate and ladle a generous spoonful of the Tomato Relish over the top of each one. Add side dishes of choice to the plates and serve immediately. Makes 6 servings.
* At this point the spare ribs can be put into a container, sealed and refrigerated for up to two days. Continue the recipe with reheating the spare ribs.