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Satisfy Your Cravings with This Easy Chinese Spare Ribs Recipe!

If you're craving for a delicious and easy-to-make meal, then Chinese spare ribs might be the perfect dish for you. This classic Chinese recipe is packed with flavour and can be cooked in a variety of ways, making it a versatile dish that can be tailored to your preferences. Whether you're looking for a quick and easy meal or a dish to impress your guests, Chinese spareribs are a great choice.

A wok sizzles with marinated spare ribs, soy sauce, and garlic. A sprinkle of green onions adds color to the dish

Choosing the right ribs is crucial to making the perfect Chinese spare ribs. Pork spare ribs are the most common choice, but you can also use beef or lamb ribs if you prefer. You'll want to choose ribs that are meaty, with a good amount of fat and connective tissue that will break down during cooking, resulting in tender, juicy meat.

Preparing the marinade is also an important step in making Chinese spare ribs. The marinade is what gives the ribs their signature flavour and can include a variety of ingredients such as soy sauce, hoisin sauce, honey, garlic, ginger, and Chinese five-spice powder. Once you've prepared the marinade, you'll want to let the ribs marinate for at least a few hours, or ideally overnight, to allow the flavours to fully penetrate the meat.

Choosing the Right Ribs

A chef marinates spare ribs in a savory Chinese sauce, then grills them to perfection over a hot flame

When it comes to making Chinese spare ribs, choosing the right type of ribs is crucial. You want to select the meaty ribs that have a good balance of meat and fat. Here are some things to keep in mind when selecting ribs for your recipe:

Baby Back Ribs vs Chinese Pork Ribs

Baby back ribs are smaller and leaner than Chinese pork ribs. They are also more tender and have a sweeter taste. Chinese pork ribs, on the other hand, are larger and meatier. They have a higher fat content, which makes them more flavourful. If you prefer a leaner cut of meat, then baby back ribs are the way to go. If you want a more flavourful cut of meat, then Chinese pork ribs are the better choice.

Nutrition Facts

Ribs are not the healthiest cut of meat, but they can be enjoyed in moderation as part of a balanced diet. Here are the nutrition facts for 100g of pork ribs:

  • Calories: 361
  • Protein: 16.1g
  • Carbohydrates: 0g
  • Fat: 32.4g
  • Fibre: 0g

While ribs are high in fat and calories, they are also a good source of protein. If you are looking to reduce the fat content of your recipe, you can try using seafood instead of pork ribs. Shrimp or scallops are great options that pair well with Chinese flavours.

That being said, if you are looking for a classic Chinese spare ribs recipe, then stick with pork ribs. They are the traditional choice and will give you the most authentic flavour.

Preparing the Marinade

A hand pours soy sauce, hoisin, garlic, ginger, and honey into a bowl. It stirs the marinade for Chinese spare ribs

When it comes to making delicious Chinese spare ribs, the marinade is the key to success. Here's how to prepare a simple and flavourful marinade that will take your spare ribs to the next level.

Combining the Ingredients

To make the marinade, you will need soy sauce, hoisin sauce, ginger, garlic, water, sesame oil, salt, Shaoxing wine, honey, and Chinese five-spice powder. In a bowl, combine 1/2 cup of soy sauce, 1/4 cup of hoisin sauce, 1 tablespoon of grated ginger, 2 cloves of minced garlic, 1/4 cup of water, 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, 1 teaspoon of salt, 1 tablespoon of Shaoxing wine, 2 tablespoons of honey, and 1 teaspoon of Chinese five-spice powder. Mix well until all the ingredients are combined.

You can adjust the ingredients to suit your taste. If you like your spare ribs sweeter, add more honey. If you prefer a spicier flavour, add some chilli flakes or hot sauce. You can also add seafood to the marinade for an extra burst of flavour. For example, you can add some shrimp or scallops to the marinade to give your spare ribs a seafood twist.

Marinating Time

Once you have prepared the marinade, it's time to marinate the spare ribs. Place the spare ribs in a large resealable plastic bag or a shallow dish. Pour the marinade over the spare ribs, ensuring that they are evenly coated. Seal the bag or cover the dish with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight. The longer you marinate the spare ribs, the more flavourful they will be.

When you're ready to cook the spare ribs, remove them from the marinade and discard the remaining marinade. Pat the spare ribs dry with paper towels and let them come to room temperature before cooking. Now that you have prepared the marinade, it's time to cook the spare ribs to perfection.

Cooking Techniques

A chef marinates spare ribs in soy sauce, garlic, and ginger. They then grill the ribs until they are caramelized and tender

Oven Baking

One of the easiest ways to cook Chinese spare ribs is by oven baking. Preheat your oven to 180°C and line a baking sheet with foil. Place a wire rack on top of the foil. This will help the ribs cook evenly and prevent them from sticking to the foil.

Place the ribs on the wire rack and bake for 20-25 minutes. While the ribs are baking, prepare the glaze. Once the ribs are cooked, brush the glaze over them and return them to the oven for an additional 10-15 minutes. This will allow the glaze to caramelize and form a delicious coating on the ribs.

If you want to add a seafood twist to your recipe, you can use prawns or scallops in the glaze. Prawns will add a sweet and juicy flavour while scallops will add a rich and buttery taste.

Using a Wok

Using a wok is another great way to cook Chinese spare ribs. Start by blanching the ribs in boiling water for five minutes. This will help remove any impurities and ensure that the meat is tender. Once the ribs are blanched, remove them from the water and set them aside.

Heat some oil in your wok and add the ribs. Cook the ribs until they are browned on all sides. Next, add your glaze and stir-fry the ribs until they are coated evenly. This should take around 3-4 minutes.

If you want to add a seafood twist to your recipe, you can use prawns or squid in the stir-fry. Prawns will add a sweet and juicy flavour while squid will add a chewy texture.

Creating the Glaze

A pair of chopsticks glazing succulent spare ribs with a sticky, sweet Chinese sauce in a sizzling hot wok

Making the glaze for your Chinese spare ribs is an essential step in achieving a delicious flavourful dish. Here are some tips to help you create the perfect glaze for your ribs.

Sauce Reduction

To make a thick and flavourful glaze, you will need to start by reducing the sauce. Combine your hoisin sauce, dark soy sauce, honey, vinegar, and Chinese 5 spice in a mixing bowl. Once you have coated your ribs with the dry seasoning rub, place them on a baking tray and put them in the oven.

While your ribs are cooking, pour your sauce mixture into a saucepan and bring it to a boil. Once it has reached boiling point, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 5-10 minutes until it thickens. Don't forget to stir occasionally to prevent it from burning.

Finishing Touches

Once your sauce has reduced, it's time to add the finishing touches. You can add a tablespoon of sesame seeds to your glaze to give it a nutty flavour. If you want to add a bit of tanginess to your glaze, add a few drops of lemon juice or rice vinegar.

To thicken your glaze, you can add a tablespoon of oyster sauce. This will give your sauce a thicker consistency and a rich umami flavour. If you want a lighter glaze, you can add a tablespoon of light soy sauce instead.

When your ribs are cooked, remove them from the oven and brush them with your glaze. Place them back in the oven for 5-10 minutes until the glaze has caramelised and the ribs are sticky. You can garnish your ribs with some chopped spring onions or coriander for an added burst of flavour.

If you want to experiment with different flavours, you can also try adding seafood to your glaze. Shrimp or squid can be a great addition to your glaze, giving it a unique flavour and texture.

Serving and Presentation

A platter of glazed spare ribs sits on a bed of vibrant green lettuce, garnished with sliced green onions and sesame seeds

Now that you have made your delicious Chinese spare ribs, it is time to serve and present them. A well-presented dish can make all the difference in how it is perceived and enjoyed.

To start, you can place the spare ribs on a large plate or platter. If you want to add some colour and flavour, you can garnish the dish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds. This will add a pop of green and a nutty flavour to the dish.

If you are looking to add some variety to your dish, you can also include seafood. Shrimp or prawns can be a great addition to the recipe. You can either cook them separately and place them on top of the spare ribs or mix them in with the marinade.

When it comes to nutritional information, it is important to note that Chinese spare ribs are not the healthiest option due to their high fat content. However, they are a great treat to enjoy every once in a while.

To serve the dish, you can pair it with some steamed rice or noodles. This will help balance out the flavours and add some texture to the dish.

In summary, serving and presenting your Chinese spare ribs can be just as important as the cooking process itself. Adding some garnish and seafood can elevate the dish to the next level. Remember to enjoy in moderation and pair with some complementary sides.

Frequently Asked Questions

A chef effortlessly prepares Chinese spare ribs, surrounded by ingredients and utensils, with a recipe book open to "Frequently Asked Questions."

What's the quickest method to prepare spare ribs?

The quickest method to prepare spare ribs is to chop them into small pieces and stir-fry them with your favourite sauce. This will take around 15-20 minutes.

How can you make your ribs tender in a jiffy?

To make your ribs tender quickly, you can use a pressure cooker or an Instant Pot. This will cut down the cooking time significantly, and the result will be tender and juicy ribs.

What's the secret behind deliciously good ribs?

The secret behind deliciously good ribs is marinating them for at least a few hours before cooking. This allows the flavours to penetrate the meat and makes it more tender and flavourful.

Can you share a simple recipe for Chinese-style braised pork ribs?

Sure, here's a simple recipe for Chinese-style braised pork ribs:

Ingredients:

  • 1 kg pork ribs
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbsp ginger, minced
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/2 cup rice wine
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 star anise
  • 1 cinnamon stick

Instructions:

  1. Heat the oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  2. Add the garlic and ginger and stir-fry for a minute.
  3. Add the pork ribs and brown them on all sides.
  4. Add the soy sauce, rice wine, brown sugar, water, star anise, and cinnamon stick.
  5. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 1 hour or until the meat is tender.
  6. Serve hot with rice.

Is it necessary to boil spare ribs before giving them a good roast?

Boiling spare ribs before roasting is not necessary, but it can help to make them more tender. If you have time, you can boil them for 30 minutes before roasting. Otherwise, you can skip this step and roast them directly.

What's a good way to achieve that classic red sauce for Chinese spare ribs?

To achieve the classic red sauce for Chinese spare ribs, you can use a mixture of hoisin sauce, soy sauce, honey, and Chinese five-spice powder. You can adjust the sweetness and saltiness to your liking. If you want to add seafood, you can use shrimp or squid, which will add a nice flavour to the dish.