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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Cook the Cover: Canadian Living June 2014

Wow! We've been getting much warmer weather lately in Toronto, it's almost enough to forgive and forget the icy cold winter we just had. T-shirts! Shorts! Ballet flats! Dresses and skirts! I am all for the summer wardrobe.

How was the past month for you? Did you celebrate Mother's Day by cooking?

I don't know if many of you have gardening, but Howard and I have decked out our balcony. We bought bright teal patio chairs and built our first planter. Looking at all the blooming flowers and green leaves make me so happy. We even started an ambitious herb trolley in the living room. The hope is that we can stop buying bunches of herbs that we can never finish.

And have you started your grill yet? We found the rib sauce in this month's cover recipe to be tasty and easy to make!

Char Siu-Style Ribs
Shopping List: pork back ribs, shallots, hoisin sauce, garlic, grenadine, honey, ginger, Chinese cooking wine, soy sauce, pepper, and five-space powder.
When I say that the rib sauce is easy to make, I'm not kidding. You just have to put everything in a blender. Purée the shallots, hoisin sauce, garlic, grenadine, honey, ginger, cooking wine, soy sauce, pepper and five-spice powder.
See? All done. You can even make this ahead of time and keep it in the fridge for up to two days.
I had Howard come help remove the membrane from the underside of ribs. For the first rib, we scored it and peeled the membrane off. By the second rib, Howard was a confident membrane remover and just yanked the whole thing off.
Next, you take the sauce and rub 1⁄2 cup all over ribs. We thought that it might not be enough marinade so we poured all of the sauce in. Cover and refrigerate for 12 to 24 hours. I made another batch of the sauce (because we used it all and because it was easy to do) to be saved for the grill.
Mmm saucy! Place the ribs, bone side down, in a roasting pan (we thought ahead and marinated the ribs in the roasting pan - no need to perform a messy transfer). Cover pan with foil and roast at 350°F (180°C) in the oven until the meat is tender, about 1-3⁄4 hours. Brush with pan drippings.
This step should not be skipped! It really helps give the ribs a nice finish and flavour. Place the ribs on a greased grill over medium heat. Grill the ribs while brushing the sauce on it. It'll start to caramelized in about about 5 to 8 minutes.
When everyone's ready to eat, slice the ribs and serve!

Having grown up eating char siu pork, we were pleasantly surprised. The char siu flavor wasn't super strong, but it was there! This was a nice subtle homage to one of the most popular take-out dishes at food courts and butcher shops. The consensus was that this would be a recipe to keep and maybe we can use the sauce for other types of meat as well.

We served our ribs with a garden salad, garlic bread, and quinoa - we were full to the max! Not to mention, we had cookie bark and ice cream for dessert. I always feel that ribs are associated with a feast-like spread. The only thing missing was grilled corn, the best summer treat!

See what other bloggers thought about the recipe here.

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post by Canadian Living and I received compensation for it. There was no requirement to produce a positive review of this recipe. All opinions are our own.

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