Bowl of Shanghai Sweet & Sour Spare Ribs
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Spare Ribs Fried & Braised
China - Shanghai

3 side  
50 min  
A tender and exceptionally flavorful "sweet and sour" spare rib without the awful neon red color and cloying sweetness presented by cheap Chinese restaurants. I tend to simmer these a bit longer to soften the cartilege - great source of calcium and probably good for joints.


Pork Spare Ribs
-- Sauce
Ketchup (1)
Tomato Juice (2)
Chinkiang Vinegar (3)  
Stock, strong
Corn starch
Oil for deep fry
PREP   -   (15 min)
  1. Separate PORK RIBS and cut into lengths less about 2 inches. A sharp Chinese cleaver knife is perfect for this.
  2. Mix all Sauce items.
RUN   -   (35 min)
  1. Tumble coat Pork Ribs well with Cornstarch and shake off any that's loose. This cornstarch helps with browning and thickens the sauce so it coats well.
  2. In a coverable wok or sauté pan heat Oil enough for deep frying and, in two batches, fry Pork Ribs over very high heat until lightly browned and crisp on the surface (they won't be cooked through yet). Remove with a slotted spoon and drain well.
  3. Pour the oil from the pan and pour in the Sauce Mix. Bring to a boil and simmer for a couple minutes, then add Pork Ribs. Bring back to a boil, cover and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes turning over a couple times for even coating and making sure it doesn't run out of liquid.
  4. After simmering, uncover the pan. If the sauce is still too liquid to properly coat the ribs keep at a high simmer until it's thickened, tumbling the ribs occasionally.
  5. Serve warm.
  1. Ketchup   This condiment originated in China. It wasn't made from tomatoes because they didn't have tomatoes, but the tomato variety is used there now.
  2. Tomato Juice:   You probably don't want to open a can for just 2 T. Take a hunk of very ripe tomato, peel off the skin, chop it a bit and pound into juice in your mortar.
  3. Chinkiang Vinegar   This is a dark rice vinegar. If you don't have it use regular rice vinegar.
  4. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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