Monday, 3 January 2011

easy slow braised pork spare ribs

slow braised pork spare ribs with bok choy

You've probably done this before. You buy some meat that was on special at the supermarket, chuck it into the freezer, and the next thing you know it's a few months on before you finally rescue them from the cold. In my case, I had these pork spare ribs and I had left them languishing in their lonesome for so long that they had developed marked hints of freezer burn. Oh dear. But I thought if I slow braised them in a broth, they could still turn out alright. I thus set The Plan in motion. The following recipe, thrown together with some bits and pieces I had in the fridge and pantry, made one serving. Read on for the results...

slow-braised pork spare ribs for one

200g pork spare ribs (note - I did not defrost mine)
1 tablespoon fish sauce (or substitute with soy sauce)
1 tablespoon honey
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon vinegar
1/2 teaspoon grated ginger
1 small bunch asian greens, such as bok choy
white pepper, to taste (you may add this at the beginning or towards the end)

- Place all ingredients except for the asian greens in saucepan. Pour in enough water to cover the meat.
- Bring to boil, then let it simmer, partially covered, between an hour to an hour and a half until the liquid is reduced and slightly thickened.
- Add the asian greens (I used bok choy) and continue to simmer for a minute or two until just cooked.
- Serve with steamed rice.

I really wasn't sure what to expect. I've had my good times with pork; I've had my bad times. And these spare ribs in particular weren't exactly a pretty sight when they emerged from their deep freeze. But my concerns were allayed upon the first bite, the tender morsel releasing its meaty goodness with juicy abandon. Freezer burn? Not a trace in the taste...

One bite reveals the sweet, succulent insides.


  1. I used to eat a lot of braised pork when I was a child! Your inclusion of honey and fish sauce makes this dish really special!

  2. Thanks Michelle! I used fish sauce because I'd ran out of soy sauce and it does add something a little different. :D

  3. A cure for freezer burn? Beautiful. These look like greatness. And yeah, I've done that whole 'buy it on sale and chuck it in the freezer' thing about a thousand times.

  4. Thanks all!

    Rich it seem to be a bad habit of mine. I get too distracted by shiny new ingredients sometimes and forget about the ones tucked away in the freezer patiently waiting for me to use them!

  5. I have stopped buying meat and putting it in the freezer for that reason. I simply forget it's existence. Now I buy meat the day I want to cook it.
    Happy New Year!

  6. I no longer eat pork, but yeah, my childhood memories are filled with them. And talk about freezer burn, I commited the crime a bit too frequently :(

  7. Magda, Anh, thanks for coming by! Seems we all share freezer burn woes. :p

  8. I love how you added the honey into the recipe; such an interesting recipe!

  9. Delicious looking spare rib dish!

  10. Look tender and moist. No signs of freezer forgotten meat!

  11. Thanks for your kind words on my blog!! These short ribs look delicious-- there have been soooo many short rib recipes floating around recently, that I am going to be forced to make them one of these days!! The Asian flavors you use seem to marry quite well!

  12. sounds fabulous! you certainly revived those pork ribs. they look delicious. will bookmark this for future cooking. cheers!

  13. Thank you all for your lovely comments! :)

  14. Sounds like a good save! I'm always trying to talk my husband into trying more short ribs -- and those flavors -- worth repeating!

    (I'm thinking I must be an indolent cook, too -- I love your stuff!)

  15. thanks for sharing.


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