Sunday, April 4, 2010

Apricot Bulgur Salad (And a Side of Baby Back Ribs)

Oh look! A second post in a matter of hours. I was clearly busy in the kitchen today (except this dish was mighty quick and very little work). So, what do non-observant Jews eat the second to last night of Passover/on Easter Sunday? Baby back pork ribs, of course! My sardonic statement regarding this food choice will remain absent, keeping with the invocation of professionalism in my last post. Just know that it's really funny, and that I'd be happy to share if you know me personally.

Baby back ribs are awesome, by the way. I love when the sauce caramelizes, but I hate when the meat falls off the bone. Ribs need some give. They are meant to be bitten into--to provide us with the animalistic indulgence of chomping into a piece of meat and pulling hard.  Kind of like this:

Taken by me in the Kenyan Serengeti.

Delicious! The lion is even demonstrating the amount of sauce that should end up on your face and hands. Your ribs aren't saucy enough if you don't get messy. Clearly I don't order ribs when out on the town. I don't really cook ribs either. In fact, my father cooked up these racks, but I will share with you how he does it. I was in charge of the side dish and came up with the bulgur dish. My dad and I enjoyed it, whereas my brother thought dates would be good instead of apricots. My mom just picked out the cucumbers. Whatever.

How To Cook Ribs
1. Get messy! Well, sort of. My dad trims a lot of the excess fat off of the pork ribs, which is kind of messy. He also takes the back membrane off.

2. Sauce em' up. Use whatever sauce you like--make your own, go lazy and pick up a bottle--and brush it over your ribs. 

3. Slow cooking. Cook your ribs for 2-3 hours (depending on if you like them falling off) at about 200F. This gets them tender and flavorful. You can also marinate overnight.

4. BBQ. When you're ready to eat, slap on more sauce and BBQ your ribs. They're already cooked, so you're just sort of getting them piping hot and caramelizing the sauce and charring them if you so desire.

Apricot Bulgur Salad (4 side servings)
1 cup uncooked bulgur
1 cup vegetable or chicken broth (I used turkey)
1 cup water
1/3 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup diced apricots (Use the slab apricots! They taste better)
1/3 cup diced cucumber
1 tbsp chopped mint leaves
1/2 tsp cinnamon

1. Cook your bulgur. The quickest way is to simmer your bulgur in the water and broth for about 15 minutes with the lid on until the bulgur absorbs all of the liquid. You can use 100% water if you want, but this gives it better flavor.

2. Fluff your bulgur and let it cool down in the fridge. 

3. Mix in the rest of the ingredients and serve.


Aunt Lynne said...

Your dad makes the best ribs and I agree, ribs should be messy. I always just add a touch of hotness to whatever sauce I am using, unless my son is sharing in the holey rite of rib eating. Tuong ot Sriracha or Cholula work best. Questions: 1) How/where does your dad slow cook the ribs? (I know it is in the house, smart ass), but oven, slow cooker, broiler? 2) Does he use a pan with a rack or do the ribs sit in their fat? Got to love the fat 3)Are we talking baby back?

Aunt Lynne said...

The Apricot Bulgur Salad sounds wonderful. Could you suggest an herb/spice other then mint. I love all the other ingredients but the mint leaves me cold. Of course I could always leave it out but would love suggestions for another added taste. (note the use of the word "leave", Clever huh)It sounds like one of those things you could just grab from the fridge for a quick nosh (Quick Nosh-Redundant?)

Baking Barrister said...

try some basil. or flat leaf parsley.

he uses the oven and they just sit on the lipped baking sheet. there really isnt much fat at all.

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