Nothing quite says America like barbecue. During the winter months however, the weather often keeps people from being able to go outside and barbecue their favorite meats. During times like this, it is great to be able to substitute the oven for the grill. Doing so does not mean that you have to have a less satisfying end product. In fact, you may find that you enjoy slow roasted meats in the oven more than their grilled counterparts. Here is an amazingly flavorful recipe for beef ribs baked in the oven. It uses short ribs instead of baby back ribs. Short ribs are more flavorful and meaty, and if they are slowly baked they can be just as tender as baby back ribs.
8 lb. beef short ribs (purchase from a butcher if possible)
6 cloves minced garlic
½ tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. paprika
1 tsp. crushed red pepper
3 sliced red onions
1 ½ cups barbecue sauce
1 15 oz. can tomato sauce
13 oz. beef or chicken broth
1. If the ribs have been in the refrigerator, leave them on the counter for a half hour to an hour. This will ensure that the ribs are not cold. If they are cooked cold, they will have a tendency to cook unevenly. When the ribs have warmed up, preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Combine the salt, black pepper, red pepper, and paprika together in a small bowl and mix well. Rub the mixture of salt, peppers, and paprika onto the ribs with your hands.
2. Line a deep rectangular baking pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil. Leave a gap between the sides of the pan and the aluminum foil. Pour water into the gap until the pan has a ¼ inch of water in the bottom. This water will steam the ribs and help to make the ribs extremely moist and tender. Place the ribs into the aluminum foil. Make sure to place the ribs with the arch of the bone up. In other word, this means the ribs will have a rainbow shape when viewed from the side. Put the sliced onions underneath the hollows of the ribs. Place the minced garlic over the top of the ribs. Put the ribs into the oven and let cook for an hour, turning over half way through.
3. After the ribs have been baked at 400 degrees for an hour, remove them from the oven. Reduce the oven to 325 degrees F. Drain the water from the pan. Flip the ribs back to arch side up. Coat the ribs with the barbecue sauce and tomato sauce. Pour the beef or chicken broth underneath the ribs. Close the aluminum foil over the top of the ribs, but do not seal completely. Leave a little gap in order for the aluminum foil not to burst. Place the roasting pan into the oven. Cook the ribs for 1 ¾ hour or until they are tender.
4. Remove the ribs from the oven and slice them apart. Serve the ribs to your diners with both mild and spicy barbecue sauce. Nothing goes better with ribs than an ice cold beer. Any kind of beer will do, but you will want to stick to something on the subtler end of the flavor spectrum. A beer that is too flavorful will overwhelm the spice of the ribs. If you wish to serve wine instead, then serve a nice red. Cabernet sauvignon is an especially good combination with beef ribs. Make sure to give your diners some wet naps to clean themselves off, because they will get messy. Enjoy!
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