After a Vietnamese lunch today I popped across the road to the Vietnamese butcher for some meat for dinner. The pork short ribs are a favourite of mine – there’s plenty of meat on them interspersed with layers of succulent fat which is perfect for keeping the meat moist during cooking. The obvious choice was to cook something Asian, but after a bit of thought and a rummage through the fridge for ingredients, I opted for a slow cooked one-pot dish with some cider. Cider brings a well rounded, slightly sweet, taste to the sauce which is the perfect partner for the pork. There’s very few ingredients to this dish, but the results are really really good. Try this immediately.
1.5kg pork short ribs (sometimes called back ribs)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion (finely chopped)
5 cloves garlic (peeled and thinly sliced)
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
500ml cider (dry cider)
1 teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper
Heat the oil in a large heavy based pan over a moderate heat. Cut the short ribs into 3 rib portions then place them into the pan and brown on all sides for about 10 minutes. Remove from the pan.
Add the onion to pan and stir for 4-5 minuetes until soft and golden. Add the garlic, bay leaves and cloves and stir for 1 minute until aromatic. Add the mustard and a splash of the cider and stir, scraping off anything that’s stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the remaining cider and 250ml water and bring to a boil. Return the meat to the pan, reduce the heat to low and stir in the salt and a good grinding of black pepper. Turn down the heat to very low and cover the pan. Cook for 1 1/2 hours, turning the meat once or twice. Remove the lid from the pan and reduce the sauce over a slightly higher heat for another 30 minutes until the pork is very tender. Remove from the heat and serve.
I served mine with mashed potatoes and vegetables.