Saucy Country Style Oven Ribs

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One thing that anyone who’s on pretty good terms with me will tell you, is that I’m usually a self-depreciating person.

I second guess myself a lot. Even if I try something new and it turns out, I’ll usually focus first on the things I did wrong before acknowledging the things I did right.

Especially when it comes to my cooking. I’m super anal about my cooking.

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If I’m making a meal for a crowd or my family, I’ll taste test the dish over and over again, making sure I’ve got my seasonings right.

I’m obsessed with the done-ness of my meats.I’m either afraid that I’m going to undercook them and feed somebody raw food, or overcook them and give someone a piece of leather. There is no in-between.

I use a thermometer to make sure my cakes bake at just the right temperature to be moist, but not too dry. 190 degrees fahrenheit. Yeah. I totally know it by heart.

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I hover over everyone asking questions about the food:

“How is everything?”

“Taste ok?”

“Is it tender/moist enough?”

“Too sweet? Too salty? Too spicy? Not sweet/salty/spicy enough?”

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Even if the dish turns out well, and everyone likes it, I usually still just let it roll off my back. I’m not huge on gloating or giving myself great huge thumbs up.

Most of the time.

But guess what? This time is different. Very, very different.

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This time, I’m gloating. Majorly gloating.

And I dare anyone to try and stop me.

Life in the kitchen is full of trial and error. Sometimes you’ll fail and mess something up. Sometimes you’ll do ok and put out something that’s passable.

And then sometimes, you’ll make something that totally and completely blows your mind.

That’s what happened to me with this dish, guys.

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Country-Style Ribs were something that before this dish, I’d never handled or attempted to cook with before. Red meat itself is just usually something I don’t get my hands on very much anymore because it’s gotten to be too friggin expensive. But my grocery store put them on sale for SUCH a good deal. And the meat looked so beautifully marbled and vibrant in the package that I just couldn’t help myself. I went ahead and bought two packages.

Because it was my first time making them, I decided to stick with something relatively simple and traditional. No frills, no fancy stuff. Barbecue ribs are the best type of ribs.

But me and the grill don’t get along, so I knew I would have to find another way of making them ‘barbecue style’. Cue this recipe I found on Epicurious.com

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What you’re looking at is hands down, one of the most delicious, outstanding, perfect things that I have ever made in my life.

I am NOT  kidding.

This is legit one of the best foods I’ve ever eaten. I almost couldn’t believe that I actually cooked it. It made me step back, take a look at myself and say, “Hey: maybe I’m actually pretty GOOD  at this whole cooking thing….”

I followed this recipe almost to the letter, the only thing I changed was to decrease the original amount of vinegar called for  in the barbecue sauce recipe. (I’m from the South, so I tend to prefer my sauce on the sweeter side.)

Guys, I can’t say enough about the tenderness of these ribs. I mean…Goll-LEEEEEE. Put that knife away: you will NOT be needing it. I’m not even 100% convinced that you’ll need a fork. That’s how tender and juicy and moist the meat comes out. You can literally pull it apart with your fingers.

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See that? That was me after I took one bite of these ribs.

I was Hot Stuff that day. And the day after that when I ate the leftovers.

Lord, just looking at these pictures is making me re-live the glorious feeling of sheer and complete culinary victory all over again. Somebody get me a trophy and a podium to make an acceptance speech, stat.

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I’m super duper late, but I’m still bringing these ribs to the Fiesta Friday#66 party. Because the world deserves to know about these ribs. It’s that serious.  Thanks to Angie and Anna @Anna International for hosting (all by herself too, that is NO easy task!)

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Saucy Country Style Oven Ribs


Recipe Adapted from Epicurious.com

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Ingredients

  • 4 lb boneless country-style pork ribs
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped (2 cups)
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced (2 tablespoons)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup (12 oz)
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons drained bottled horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

 Directions

Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.

Put ribs in a 6- to 8-quart pot and cover with water by two inches. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, skimming froth, 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook onion and garlic in oil in a 3- to 4-quart heavy saucepan over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in remaining ingredients and simmer, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes.

Drain pork in a colander and pat dry, then arrange in 1 layer using tongs in a 13- by 9-inch baking dish. Pour sauce over pork to coat evenly, then cover dish tightly with foil. Bake 1 hour, then remove foil and carefully turn pork over with tongs and cook, uncovered, until very tender, about 30 minutes. Skim fat from sauce if desired.

Sugar Cookie Torte

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12 Days of Christmas {Treats}

Three days til Christmas! Can you guys believe it? I don’t know where this entire year went, much less December. I swear it was just yesterday that I was sharing my Thanksgiving recipes with you guys. Only six more random Christmas facts to share, here’s three of them for now:

  1. 1 in 10 – The number of the presents received that will be broken by the New Year. (To be honest I would have thought that number would be higher.)
  2. Coca Cola was the first beverage company to use Santa for a winter promotion. (Anyone remember the old Coca Cola commercials with Santa and the polar bear from the 90s? I miss those.)
  3. 7 in 10 – The number of dogs that get Christmas gifts from their owner. (I’m not surprised at this one at all. I don’t have a dog -or a pet, period- but from what I hear it’s just like having another pet.)

Source

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This is another recipe that I’ve been curious about since I was little. The cookbook I got it from is my mom’s and was first released in 1997- just to give you an idea of how old it is. Sugar cookies are my all time favorite cookie to eat. This recipe uses them when crushed up as a large substitute for flour. I thought it sounded good then, and I still thought it sounded good now. But unlike in 1997, I’m now old enough to actually use a stove on my own, so I thought that I would make it this year and put it in the series of Christmas Treats.

All of my fellow foodies out there are probably wondering why this is called a torte and not just a cake. Maybe some of you out there are wondering what the difference is supposed to be between them in the first place. Then maybe some of you just don’t care. Whichever group you’re in, I’ll give an explanation anyway.

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If you want to be general about it, tortes are a kind of cake. The word ‘torte’ is German for the word ‘cake’ in fact. So if you’re a fan of cake, then chances are you’ll like tortes too. Now if you want to be technical about it, tortes do usually have a few significant changes in the ingredients. The flour is usually replaced by some kind of ground up nuts or breadcrumbs, which gives it a heavier texture. There’s no baking soda or baking powder in the dry ingredients, so they usually don’t rise very high either. They’re also typically decorated with some kind of fruit, cream or custard filling that helps to balance out the heaviness of the torte.

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This torte turned out somewhat different from the ‘conventional’ way. In the first place, even though there aren’t any baking soda or baking powder and very little flour, it still rose pretty high. My only guess would be that it was the 6 eggs that gave it an extra ‘lift’. There’s also no filling in it, though I don’t think that it’s necessary in this case. This torte is more than yummy enough to stand on its own. Although I do think this would taste pretty good warmed up and topped with some whipped cream or cool whip and strawberries with a Vanilla latte on the side. I think this recipe was well worth the wait- give it a shot, and I’m pretty sure you will too.

Christmas Carol Movies

Rather than try to give a recommendation for each of these movies, I thought I’d just throw them all together in one post and suggest you just set aside a few hours in the next 3 days to just try and watch them all together in A Christmas Carol marathon…Like I’m doing today.

So let’s recap: you guys have now got Mickey Mouse, the Muppets, Jim Carrey and Vanessa Williams giving you their version of Charles Dicken’s classic, as well as this recipe for a sugar cookie torte. Thank me later: for now, just get baking and watching.

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Sugar Cookie Torte

Recipe Courtesy of Christmas with Southern Living (1997)

CLICK HERE FOR PRINTABLE VERSION

Ingredients

  • 2 cups slivered almonds, toasted
  • 1 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 (5 1/4 ounce) packages of sugar cookies, finely crushed (3 cups)
  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup half-and-half
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla extract
  • Powdered sugar (optional)

 Directions

1. Draw a 10’ circle on a piece of wax paper, using a 10” tube pan as a guide. Cut out a circle. Set tube pan insert in center of circle. Grease bottom of pan, and line with wax paper cutout; heavily grease and flour wax paper and sides of pan. Set aside.

2. Position knife blade in food processor bowl; add almonds. Pulse 4-6 times or until almonds are coarsely ground. (Be careful not to overprocess, as this releases oil from the almonds).

3. Beat butter at medium speed of an electric mixer until creamy;; gradually add 2 cups sugar, beating well. Add eggs, one at a time, beating after each addition.

4. Combine cookie crumbs and flour; add to butter mixture alternately with half-and-half, beginning and ending with crumb mixture. Beat at low speed just until blended after each addition. Stir in almonds and vanilla.

5. Spoon batter into prepared pan. (Batter will fill pan only half full). Bake at 300° for 1 hour and 40 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. (Torte only rises slightly). Let cool completely in pan on a wire pack.

6. Run a sharp knife around edge of pan to loosen torte. Carefully invert torte onto a serving plate; peel off wax paper. Invert torte again. Sift powdered sugar over torte, if desired.

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