Winter is still roaring where I live on the Canadian Prairies. It's been almost a solid five months of bone chilling cold. And there is no respite in the near future. Having spent most winters of my life out here I know the deal, but it still doesn't mean I have to like it! I've been a good sport long enough. It's time to think of shedding layers and wearing the cute boots instead of the practical, warm, fleece lined pair. I want pretty tops instead of wool sweaters. I want to get in my car and drive, instead of having to let it warm up for minutes beforehand. And I want to grill my food! But the BBQ is buried somewhere out in the snow pile that is covering my patio. Not one to give up on a dream, especially a dream of food, I thought I would whip up a beautiful BBQ sauce, throw it over some ribs and slow cook the whole deal in my crock pot. If I closed my eyes and inhaled, surely I would recall what it is to be basking in sunshine, sipping a nice chilled Pinot Grigio on the patio while the ribs were sizzling away on the BBQ.
Whenever something turns out incredible in the slow cooker, I kind of scold myself for not using it more often. These ribs were fantastic! Truly the fall off the bone variety. The sauce was spicy and sweet, and the ground ginger wrapped it all up nicely. I used one rack of ribs, cut into 3 rib sections, and that is what this recipe calls for. It can be easily doubled though. When the time comes for proper BBQ-ing (it will, right?) I would brush this sauce over everything. Ribs, chicken, chops. Just cook the sauce on the stove top first for about 20 minutes.
Slow Cooked BBQ Pork Ribs
1 side of pork ribs, cut into 3 rib sections.
1/2 onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup ketchup
1 cup crushed tomatoes
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp molasses
1 tbsp hot sauce
1 tsp chili powder OR 1/2 tsp ground chipotle pepper
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp coarse salt
Preheat oven to 350*F
Season your ribs with salt and pepper. Cook in the oven for 40 minutes, turning a few times. (This will cook off some of the grease.)
In the meantime, in a medium bowl, add the onions, garlic and rest of the sauce ingredients and stir well. When the ribs have cooked, place them in the slow cooker. Pour the sauce over top and stir to evenly coat. Refrigerate over night if you are getting this ready the night before. If not, then set the timer for 8 hours on LOW. I roasted some baby potatoes in olive oil and garlic with a little coarse salt and pepper. Coleslaw would have been awesome, but I had these delightful baby greens, so a garden salad it was. (Serves 3-4)
With a little taste of this sauce, I know I can hang in there. Spring REALLY is just around the corner. Until then, I'll try conjuring it with pretty flowers too. It can't hurt!