Carolina-style pork ribs with jalapeno cornbread
Photo by Kieran Scott
This recipe from my book Stoked is perfect for a long weekend – when you’ve got the time to marinate the ribs and cook a proper barbecue sauce. I love this cornbread, and it’s so good made with fresh corn. Make a tomatillo avocado salsa to serve with it all but you’ll have to refer to Stoked for the recipe, or use your own favourite salsa recipe.
Stoked is published by Random House and available at good booksellers.
To marinate the ribs
|3 kgs||Pork ribs, 3 slabs cut in half|
|2 Tbsp||Spanish smoked sweet paprika|
|2 tsp||Freshly ground black pepper|
|2 tsp||Cayenne pepper|
First cooking of the ribs
|2 cups||Carrots, diced|
|2 cups||Onions, diced|
|2 cups||Celery, diced|
|8||Garlic cloves, roughly chopped|
|½ cup||Cider vinegar|
|½ cup||Mustard, American Ball Park is recommended|
|4 Tbsp||Brown sugar|
|2 Tbsp||Smoked paprika|
|2 Tbsp||Tomato paste|
|2 tsp||Tabasco sauce|
|0.3 cup||Olive oil|
|1½ cups||Onions, finely chopped|
|¼ cup||Jalapeno pepper, use canned jalapenos, finely chopped|
|4 cups||Corn kernels, roughly chopped|
|3 cups||Cornmeal, fine-grain|
|2½ cups||Cheddar cheese, grated|
|1 to brush||Cooking oil|
|1 to serve||Salsa|
|250 g||Sour cream|
- To marinate the ribs, first combine the ingredients to make the Carolina spice rub. Sprinkle a liberal amount over the ribs, massage in and marinate in the fridge for at least a day
- To cook the ribs, heat the oven to 150C. Place the marinated ribs in a roasting or braising dish. Place all the vegetables and other ingredients in a saucepan on medium heat, stir until the sugar is dissolved, then pour the mixture over the ribs.
- Cover the dish with tinfoil, place on high heat for 5 minutes then carefully place in the oven. Check after 80 minutes, then at 20-minute intervals after that until the pork is soft but not falling off the bones. Remove the ribs from the liquid and cool. Refrigerate until required.
- Allow the braising liquid to cool a little before pureeing until smooth. Pour back in the saucepan then place on medium-low heat and simmer to reduce until thick. Cool then refrigerate until required. This becomes your barbecue sauce for brushing on the ribs as they are grilled.
- For the jalapeno cornbread, heat the oven to 160C. Line a large ovenproof frying pan or 2 loaf tins with baking paper or greased tinfoil. Place a sauté pan on medium-low heat. Add the olive oil, onion and jalapeño peppers and sweat for 15 minutes until the onion is transparent and soft.
- Place in a large mixing bowl with the corn, cornmeal, buttermilk, cheddar and salt. Reserve. Place the egg yolks in another bowl and whisk until creamy. In another clean bowl whisk the whites to soft peaks. Carefully fold the egg yolks into the whites to create a light, airy mix.
- Fold this into the corn and onion mix until fully combined then pour into the prepared frying pan or loaf tins. Place in the oven and bake for 45 minutes until the cornbread is golden and firm to the touch. Use a toothpick or skewer to check if the centre is cooked.
- Remove from the oven and let the cornbread cool a little before turning out.
- To cook and serve, heat your chargrill or flat-top to high heat. Lightly brush the ribs with oil then place on the heat. Brush with the reserved braising liquor as they cook. Remove the ribs once golden and nicely charred.
I like to cut the cornbread into thick slices and brush with a little oil then cook on the flat-top for a couple of minutes until golden and slightly crunchy. Place the ribs on a platter, and the cornbread, some salsa, sour cream and lime halves on the side. Let everyone help themselves. A bucket of ice-cold Coronas would be a nice touch.