Monday, September 5, 2011

Spicy Braised Rib Tips

When I demonstrated how to trim pork spare ribs St. Louis style, I mentioned in the video that the trimmings would not go to waste. Actually there is nothing wrong with cooking the rib tips right along with the ribs.  But I prefer to use the trimmings for other things.

This recipe makes a bunch of spicy shredded pork that can be eaten by itself or used to make things like:
  • tacos 
  • quesadillas
  • burritos
  • beans and rice
  • pork nachos 
  • top with a fried egg for breakfast
  • pizza
This weekend I used a batch and some of Alexis' leftover homemade rolls to make mini spicy pork subs.
Condiments were roasted red pepper mayo and a jalapeno/onion relish.

We typically freeze it in quart sized vacuum bags and then on a weeknight it can be ready in 15 minutes by putting it straight from the freezer into a pot of boiling water for just a few minutes.

It seems like a lot of ingredients but it is an “everything goes in at once” deal. 

I used a camp style Dutch oven but you could also do this by braising in your stove top/oven.

Spicy Braised Rib Tips

5 lbs pork spare rib trimmings (trimmings from 3 ribs)
1 white onion, peeled and sliced
¼ cup fresh oregano
¼ cup cilantro
4 cloves garlic, peeled
3 sprigs fresh thyme
3 dried red chiles, chopped (deseeded if you want milder heat)
½ cup beer
¼ cup cider vinegar
¼ cup oil
1 Tbsp cumin
1 Tbsp paprika
1 Tbsp seasoned salt
1 tsp coarse black pepper
1 tsp hot sauce
1 tsp chili powder
1 tsp salt
½ tsp dried lemon peel
3 cloves (whole not ground)

Put the pork and all fresh ingredients into the Dutch oven.

Whisk together the liquids and dry seasonings for your braising liquid. Pour over everything in the Dutch oven.

Braise for 2 hours. This is where I screwed up but it worked. Can you tell what I did wrong in this picture?

When using a camp Dutch oven like this the typical arrangement is 2/3rds of your briquettes on top and 1/3rd on the bottom. My plan was 10 on bottom, 20 on top. As you can see, I reversed it - DOH! Every 15 minutes I turned the bottom 90 degrees counter clockwise and the lid 90 degrees clockwise. It wasn't until an hour in that I realized my mistake. It didn't seem to hurt anything and when I replenished the coals, I fixed it.

When the tips hit 195-200f they are done. That took right at the 2 hour mark for mine.  Remove from the coals and let rest for 10 minutes.
They will look butt ugly at this point, don't worry, they taste amazing.

Then use two large forks to shred the meat like pulled pork. 

Try not to eat it all while you are shredding it.....

It looks a little like pulled pork but the texture is a little more firm than pulled pork and because of the ingredients I used, it has a Latin flavor profile.   

 It was perfect in the black beans and rice that I made to go with the flank steak the other day.

Win a $500 Carivore Kit at
Kingsford is giving away a Carnivore Kit EACH WEEK just for signing up and showing where you are grilling on their interactive map [click to enter].  Each package includes -
  • Snake River Farms meats
  • Kingsford barrel grill
  • Kingsford charcoal
  • Grilling tools
  • KC Masterpiece BBQ sauce
This is a very nice prize package.  I've had the Snake River Farms beef and it is fantastic, some of the best waygu beef around.  Tender and incredibly good.

I hope you all are having a great Labor Day!