Cooking Classes


Oven Back Ribs with Baked Beans

Real ribs are made in a smoker cooking low and slow. It is winter and I don't feel like lighting up the barbecue. These ribs made in the oven are pretty darned good, too.

Baked beans are an excellent side dish. I made them in a slow cooker.  Rather than soaking the beans overnight and slow cooking them all day I did the opposite. It was mid-day before I thought to make them. I put them to soak and before I went to bed I assembled all the ingredients in the slow cooker and let them cook all night. The only drawback is that around 2am I was awakened by the wonderful aroma. If they had been ready I would have eaten a meal then and there. Glad they weren't done!

Oven Pork Baby Back Ribs

1/2 tbsp. smoked paprika
1/2 tbsp. ground coriander
1/2 tbsp. ground cumin
1/2 tbsp. kosher salt
1/2 tbsp. black pepper
1/2 tbsp. ground ancho chiles
1/2 tbsp. dry mustard
1/2 tbsp. dried oregano
1/4 c. canola oil

Mix all spices together in a small bowl. This makes enough for 2 racks of ribs.

Prepare the ribs by removing the shiny thin skin on the back called the silver skin. Trim off  2 or 3 ribs from the small end and 1 rib from the large end to make a more even rack. It will cook more evenly. The cut pieces can be cooked along with the racks.

Brush ribs with oil and rub with spice mixture. Place in a plastic bag for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.

When ready to cook, preheat oven to 300F. Place ribs on a baking sheet and bake in oven. After the first hour, baste with the 'mop'. Baste again after an hour. After 3 - 4 hours baking they should be ready to serve.

This is a basting liquid to keep the ribs moist while they slowly cook. It is traditionally applied with a brush called a mop.

1/2 c. barbecue sauce
1/4 c. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. light brown sugar
2 tbsp. apricot jam
1/4 c. apple or apricot juice or water

Bring to a boil over medium heat to melt all ingredients and cool to room temperature.

Baked Beans
Panela is a Mexican unrefined natural sugar. It has a molasses flavour. Substitute with 1/4 cup brown sugar and 1 tablespoon molasses.
3 c. dried navy beans
1/4 c. panela brown sugar
1 c. low sodium tomato juice
1/2 lb. pork belly or thick cut bacon, chopped
2 c. chopped yellow onion
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp. dry mustard
1 dried chipotle pepper
2 tsp. salt
Pepper, to taste

Soak the beans overnight in enough water to cover by 3 inches. Drain.

Add tomato juice, panela, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, dried pepper and dry mustard in slow cooker set on high with the lid on until the sugar is dissolved.

Layer the soaked beans with the bacon and onion. I make about 3 layers. Add enough water to cover the beans. Cook on low for 6 - 7 hours or until tender.


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