Thursday, March 19, 2009

Crockpot Babyback Ribs

I've been using this method (scroll down), which a friend introduced to me, for a few years. It's good, but I always felt like there was something missing, and I wanted to get the ribs even more tender. I came up with this tonight, and it turned out wonderfully. It's already my husband's favorite way to have ribs!

1 rack of baby back ribs
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons honey
Kansas City-style smokey barbecue sauce (I used a jar of Trader Joe's brand)

Rinse ribs under cold running water, and then pat dry on both sides with paper towels. Cut rack in half. Season liberally with salt and pepper all over. In a large skillet, heat approximately 2 tablespoons vegetable oil until very hot -- oil should shimmer and just begin to smoke. Brown ribs on both sides for 1-2 minutes; when done, meat will release easily from the pan. (If it sticks, your pan isn't hot enough; increase the heat and wait until the ribs release without tearing meat.)

Place browned ribs in the bottom of crock pot, meaty side down. Add enough water to achieve about a 1/2 inch depth. Whisk vinegar and honey together; add to crock pot. Cover and cook on high for approx. 3 hours or on low for 6 hours. (I actually did mine for two hours on high and then two hours on low.)

Preheat oven to broil. Place ribs meaty side down on a wire rack inside a shallow baking dish (for easier cleanup, line dish with foil.) Slather top with barbecue sauce and broil about 4-5 inches from heat for 3-4 minutes. Flip ribs and repeat on meaty side.

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