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Braised Country Style Ribs Recipe

Prep Time1 hr
Cook Time2 hrs
Total Time3 hrs
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Servings: 6 - 8 servings

Ingredients

For the Rub

  • tablespoons sweet paprika
  • teaspoons brown sugar
  • teaspoons dry mustard
  • teaspoons dry sage
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 6 country style ribs
  • 4 strips bacon cut into pieces
  • 2 medium yellow onions cut into thin slices
  • 4 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • 2 carrots chopped

For the Braising Liquid

  • 3 cups chicken stock
  • 12 ounces beer stout or dark lager
  • ¼ cup cider vinegar
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 teaspoon caraway seeds
  • 3 drops Asian hot sauce for a little kick - optional

Instructions

For the Rub

  • You'll want to cover the ribs with the rub and let sit for a minimum of a couple of hours up to overnight. I used a large stainless steel utility bowl to mix all the rub ingredients and one at a time added a rib to cover.
    Be sure to knock off any excess rub off the rib before starting the next. After each one was covered, I placed them into a large Ziploc bag and stuck the bag in the refrigerator.
  • The Fine Cooking recipe calls for searing the ribs on your grill, then braising them in a heavy duty pot on the cooler part of your grill for indirect heating. You then finish the ribs using direct heat over medium-low heat.
    This is a great method and one I can't wait to try, but since I was firing up the wood burning oven to make pizza for friends, I wanted to take advantage of the residual oven heat to slow cook (braise) the ribs overnight at a constant 200° F.
  • So I browned the ribs in the house on my stove top in a large fry pan. In fact, I did all the prep in a large fry pan and then transferred everything to a large Dutch oven that was used for braising the ribs overnight.
    One of the advantages of doing everything on the grill, especially during a hot summer is keeping some of the heat out of the house. I suppose I could have seared and prepped the other ingredients in a sauce pan in the hot wood burning oven, but it is easier to control on a stove top. I could have also used my grill to brown the meat and prepare the other ingredients.

Browning the Ribs

  • I heated up the pan before browning the meat. I also didn't use any oil. When the meat starts browning and forming a caramelized crust, you turn it. It takes about 4 minutes to brown each piece and I worked in batches of two.

For the Braising Liquid

  • When all the ribs were browned, removed and reserved on a plate, I deglazed the pan with half of the cider vinegar being sure to scrape up any of the little pieces of meat (fond) stuck to the pan. I immediately added the bacon and let it cook over medium heat until it began to crisp.
  • Next, I added the onions and cooked for 6 - 8 minutes until they began to soften.
  • Next, I added the garlic and carrots and continued cooking for a couple of minutes. Once the aromatics were softened, I added the chicken stock, beer, bay leaves, caraway seeds and the rest of the vinegar, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon so I wouldn't lose any of the fond. I brought everything up to a boil, then lowered the heat and simmered for about 12 minutes.

Note

  • I started this in a fry pan and transferred everything to a Dutch oven. Not sure why, but If I were to do this again, I would skip the fry pan and do everything in the Dutch oven. Less clean up and just as effective.

Braising

  • Preheat the oven to 300° F.
  • After the braising liquid simmers, remove from heat and add the reserved ribs back into the liquid and cover. When I was done making pizza and the oven cooled off a little, I placed the Dutch oven into the wood burning oven, covered the front entry way and let it cook all night at about 200° F.
  • Since you probably won't be cooking the ribs outside in a wood burning oven, place the Dutch oven into the preheated oven and cook for about 2 hours until they are fork tender.
    Give them a turn after the first 45 minutes of cooking. When they are fork tender, follow my Next Day steps below.

The Next Day

  • In the morning, I removed the Dutch oven from the wood burning oven. In the kitchen I removed the cover and, wow! The aroma that hit me was amazing. Remove all the meat and reserve in a container with a lid or zip lock bag.
  • And yes, the meat does fall apart. You will be tempted to enjoy the ribs for breakfast but you may want to wait and serve them for dinner. With all the meat removed, strain the sauce through a fine meshed strainer using the back of a spoon to push all the liquid into another container. I used a plastic take-out food container with a lid.
  • Since I wasn't serving this meal until dinner, I put the ribs and sauce into the refrigerator. By the time I was ready to serve, the fat separated from the rest of the sauce and sat at the top of the container. I used a spoon to scrape out the fat leaving me with an incredibly flavorful sauce.
  • Use the sauce to reheat the meat and serve with your side dishes. I served sauteed broccoli rabe and orzo.