Thursday, June 10, 2010

Chocolate Espresso Baby Back Ribs Recipe

Even though I bought just a small bit of espresso beans to make the Espresso-Shortbread Brownie Bars recently, I still had some beans leftover. And since I don’t drink coffee, I decided to use them in some other recipe.

That’s how I came up with the following baby back ribs dish. Also, it seems like a good summertime recipe to share. I don’t own a grill, so I miss out on a lot of summer grilling food. But ribs are so easy to make in the oven and I think it comes out just as good, still allowing me to feel like I’m enjoying good ole’ summer fare.

Along with the espresso beans, I added chocolate to the BBQ sauce. In a way, this is like Mexican mole, although totally not because I know authentic mole would have a whole bunch of other ingredients mixed in. I like to keep it simple. The ribs turned out great (it’s so easy to make ribs, or maybe I just love ribs so I’m happy with any kind) but I go back and forth about the chocolate and espresso. The coffee can be a bit bitter when grounded and not brewed, but it’s balanced by the chocolate. The end result is a deeper flavor, but you might not be able to tell if it’s because of the chocolate or the espresso beans. One thing’s for sure, it kept me up all night! Enjoy!

Copyright 2010 by Cooking With The Single Guy

2.5 lbs. pork ribs
½ cup brown sugar
2 t dry mustard
2 t ground fennel
1 t ground black pepper
3 t salt
6 oz. dark chocolate, chopped
2 T espresso beans (finely ground)
½ onion, diced
1 cup beef broth
6 oz. tomato paste
¼ cup sherry vinegar
2 T unsulfured molasses
½ cup sugar
1 T extra virgin olive oil

Prepare ribs six hour in advance or overnight: Start by mixing brown sugar, dry mustard, fennel, black pepper and salt in a bowl. Then generously spread the mixture over the top of your rack of ribs. (Tip: If your rack seems long for your roasting tray, cut it in half into two racks for positioning. Do this before you apply the rub.)

Place ribs on tray and cover with aluminum foil and let sit for at least six hours or overnight.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Remove ribs from refrigerator and place on roasting rack. Pour about a cup of water in the tray. Cook for about 2 hours.

In a saucepan, add olive oil over medium high heat and then add onion and sautéed for 2 to 3 minutes until translucent. Lower heat to medium and add chocolate and stir until melted. Then add espresso beans, beef broth, tomato paste, vinegar, molasses and sugar and mix well. Let cook at a simmer until thicken, about 30 minutes.

After 2 hours, remove ribs from oven and apply sauce generously over the top (not really necessary to get the bottom) and then place rack at least six inches from broiler and cook for another 30 minutes or until the sauce dries a bit and becomes like a glaze. (If you cook it too long it’ll blacken easily.)

Remove from oven and let cool. Cut ribs into individual pieces, plate and serve with cole slow and mashed potatoes.

Makes 3 to 4 servings.

Pair with a stout beer or cabernet sauvignon.

TIP: When making the sauce, the onion might seem chunky when spreading it on your ribs. So if you want a smoother sauce, you can use a hand blender and pulse the onions in the saucepan. Also, my recipe makes a bit of sauce, so you can put the leftover in the jar and refrigerate for up to a week. (I used some to make BBQ chicken the next night.) When refrigerated, it does thicken more and might seem like chocolate mousse because of the chocolate in it. So if you don't want to deal with leftover sauce, you can cut the ingredients for the BBQ sauce portion by half and that should be enough to cover your rack of ribs.

GRILL IT: I don’t have a grill, which is why I make this easy ribs in the oven. But you can easily make this recipe on a covered grill, still using a roasting tray with rack and a very low fire to slow smoke the ribs.


Mary Bergfeld said...

These ribs as good as can be. They are a natural to make for Father's Day. I put nutella on my waffle this morning and blamed you :-). Have a wonderful day. Blessings...Mary

Hungry Dog said...

Awesome. I want to make these! We don't have a grill either so this would suit me just fine. Way to go, Single Guy.

Carolyn Jung said...

I'll take your extra coffee beans. I drink coffee. heehee. How's that for asking for a handout or is that a cup-out? ;)

Mary Bergfeld said...

I hope you enjoy the turkey salad. It is a nice recipe. Have a great weekend. Blessings...Mary

foodhoe said...

Looks good! We recently tried grilling ribs over indirect heat and thought the longer the better, but that is not the case... anyways, maybe the oven is better. The mixture of spices etc sounds very interesting Single guy!