AN ALL-AMERICAN MEAL
From sea to shining sea, everyone readily agrees that only one other food feels more American during the summer season than a juicy hamburger . . . barbecued ribs. It's easy to spice up your traditional barbecue fare with a little help from Chef Kris Capra, host of Easyway Gourmet with Kris Capra on PBS.
Capra’s classic All-American Meal, which includes barbecued/baked ribs with pineapple coleslaw, garlic bread and grilled corn on the cob, is a delightful spin on a traditional sparerib recipe that requires very little effort to prepare and is perfect to celebrate the summer season.
“The most important thing about my recipe is the spareribs are first browned on the grill, and then baked in the oven for two hours,” said Capra.
When baking, be sure to cover the pan very tight. The ribs will become so tender and juicy that they almost fall off the bone.
“You will also need a very good BBQ sauce; while I make my own, your family’s personal taste will drive what variation of sauce you go with. Of course, I think mine is the best!”
Coleslaw, while it did not originate in America, is extremely popular in the United States. And if you add a little pineapple, it adds a special gourmet touch and the coleslaw becomes so much more.
“My Pineapple Coleslaw is the perfect accompaniment for the ribs because it compliments the taste of the BBQ sauce. Combined with the mayonnaise flavor in the coleslaw and the sweetness of the pineapple, it’s a perfect pair.”
Capra offers a few additional hints:
- Prepare the coleslaw dressing one day ahead of time and refrigerate. Don’t add the pineapple to the dressing. Add it to the coleslaw when you mix it together. It’s so much easier if you buy already-chopped cabbage in the bag.
- Before you slice the ribs to serve them, mix the coleslaw, pineapple and dressing and allow the mixture to sit in the refrigerator for a few minutes.
- If you are making garlic bread, make the garlic bread last so it will be hot. Watch the bread in the oven and turn the pan so the garlic bread will evenly toast. You know the bread is done when the cheese is a little brown.
- The corn should only take about 10 to 12 minutes. Don’t make it too far ahead of time or it will get hard. When the corn is complete, turn off the grill, butter the corn and wrap it in aluminum foil. Leave it on the grill until the spareribs are finished.
So, the next time you and your family gather to celebrate the summer season, consider this classic from Chef Capra.
Cooking time: 2½ hours
Yield: 4 servings
- 4 pounds large pork ribs, brisket bone off
- 1 bottle BBQ Sauce (your favorite)
Turn your grill to a moderate high heat and spray the grill with a nonstick vegetable cooking spray. Salt the ribs and place them on the grill. Grill them until they are nice and brown on both sides, about 7 to 8 minutes on each side. Watch them so they don’t flare up.
Remove from grill and preheat oven to 350 degrees. Put the ribs in a large aluminum roasting pan and cover them tightly with aluminum foil. You can use your own roasting pan, but the ribs release a lot of fat and you will probably prefer to throw the aluminum pan away when you are done. That’s easy.
Put the ribs in the oven for 1½ hours and bake. When time is up, take them out of the oven and pour the fat from the bottom of the pan.
The ribs should already be very tender. Baste the ribs generously with the BBQ sauce, cover again and return to oven and bake for 30 additional minutes.
Remove from oven and let them sit for a few minutes. Heat up remaining BBQ sauce, slice the ribs up and serve with the BBQ sauce.
Cooking time: 10 minutes
Yield: 4 servings
- 1 pound of multicolored coleslaw, already shredded
- 2 ounces crushed pineapple in its own juice
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 3/4 cup real mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon American yellow mustard
Place red wine vinegar into a mixing bowl. Add a pinch of salt and whisk. Add the sugar to the vinegar and whisk until completely blended.
Add the mayonnaise and whisk quickly so it does not separate. Completely blend. Then add the mustard and whisk.
Place the coleslaw in a bowl and add the sauce.
Add the 2 tablespoons of crushed pineapple and toss gently. You can keep it in the refrigerator or serve it immediately.
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