When mom made roast on Sundays, I ate only an itty bitty bit of meat--the smallest bit required to leave the table--and piled up on rice and gravy or mashed potatoes and gravy. Pretty much for the gravy.
My favorite part of a roast beef po'boy isn't the slow cooked, falling apart roast beef. It's the bread drenched in gravy.
When I serve myself a bowl of gumbo, I don't scoop out all of the meat or seafood from the pot. I'm after the spicy, smoky, flavorful juice.
So why do I usually shun soup?
I don't know...and it's not all that nice of you to point out my oddities.
When I came across spare ribs on sale for the Super Bowl, I knew they would find their way not to my BBQ pit, but to my Dutch oven. Cooked in gravy.
These ribs are rubbed down with salt, pepper, Tony's, onion and garlic powder, and smoked paprika. Then they are smeared with tomato paste...
and baked at a high temperature for caramelization--a tip from a chef friend of mine.
Finally, the ribs are slowly simmered in a smoky, spicy red gravy full of onions, bell pepper, garlic, and smoked sausage.
Good country food might not be pretty, but it'll stick to ya.
Spare Ribs in Smoky Tomato Gravy
was inspired by
hosted by The Law Student's Cookbook.
This month's ingredient is NOODLESMy pantry ingredients were: corkscrew pasta, onions, garlic, tomato paste, Ro-tel tomatoes, and the spices used.
If you are looking to use up some of that stuff hanging out in your pantry, or if you are up for the challenge of creating something based on what you already have, check out this monthly round-up.
Spare Ribs in Smoky Tomato Gravy
pork spare ribs, about 4 lb
salt, pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, Tony's Creole Seasoning, and smoked paprika
1 (6 oz) can tomato paste, divided
1 large onion
1 bell pepper
4 cloves garlic
2 stalks celery
1 link (about 6-8 oz) smoked sausage (the smokiest you can find)
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 can (10 oz) Ro-tel tomatoes
1 can (14 oz) chicken broth
1/2 tsp smoked paprika
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp cornstarch
1 lb pasta, cooked
Preheat oven to 400 F. Trim excess fat off of the rack of ribs and remove the membrane. Line a large pan with foil. Place the ribs on the pan and season both sides liberally with salt, pepper, Tony's, onion powder, garlic powder, and smoked paprika. Rub the spices into meat.
Next, smear 3 tablespoons of tomato paste over the top of the rack of ribs. Place the ribs in the heated oven and bake for about 40 minutes, until the tomato paste becomes sticky and browns in spots.
Meanwhile, chop the onions, bell pepper, garlic, and celery plus any leaves on the celery stalks. Slice the sausage lengthwise into fourths, then dice. Heat the olive oil over medium high in a large pot with a lid. Brown the sausage. Add the vegetables and saute for about 8 minutes. Add the remaining tomato paste and saute a few minutes more. Add the ro-tel, broth, smoked paprika, and bay leaf. Cover and simmer on low until you are ready to remove ribs from the oven.
Cut the rack of ribs to fit your pot. Place the ribs in the pot and add water just to cover. Cover the pot and simmer for about 3 hours, or until the ribs are tender and just starting to fall apart. Remove the ribs from the pot. Make a slurry, mixing the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of cold water. Add to the tomato gravy and bring to a boil. Cook for a few minutes until thickened.
To serve, toss the pasta with as much tomato gravy as you like and pour onto a platter. Place the ribs over the pasta and spoon additional gravy over the ribs. Serve family style.