american-style sticky pork ribs

with fennel and apple slaw

  • 2 cups (500ml) malt vinegar
  • 2 litres water
  • 6 bay leaves
  • 3 sticks cinnamon
  • ½ cup (90g) brown sugar
  • ¼ cup (75g) rock salt
  • 1 brown onion, quartered
  • 2kg American-style pork ribs

maple bourbon glaze

  • 1 cup (250ml) bourbon or whiskey
  • ½ cup (125ml) maple syrup
  • ½ cup (125ml) malt vinegar
  • ¼ cup (60ml) Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt flakes

fennel and apple slaw

  • ¼ cup (75g) mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 cups (320g) shredded white cabbage
  • 1 medium fennel bulb (300g), trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2 Granny Smith (green) apples, halved and thinly sliced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill
  1. Place the vinegar, water, bay leaves, cinnamon, sugar, rock salt and onion in a large saucepan over high heat. Stir to combine and bring to the boil. 
  2. Add the ribs, reduce the heat to medium and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Simmer for 30–40 minutes or until the pork is tender.
  3. While the ribs are cooking, make the maple bourbon glaze. Place the bourbon, maple syrup, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, paprika and salt flakes in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir to combine and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 8–10 minutes or until slightly reduced. Set aside.
  4. Preheat oven to 220°C (425°F).
  5. Remove the ribs from the cooking liquid and place, meat-side down, in a large deep-sided ovenproof dish. Top with the glaze and roast for 15 minutes.
  6. Turn the ribs over, baste with the glaze and roast for a further 15 minutes or until the pork is tender and the glaze is reduced.  
  7. To make the fennel and apple slaw, place the mayonnaise and lemon juice in a large bowl and mix to combine. Add the cabbage, fennel, apple and dill and toss to combine.
  8. Brush pork ribs with any remaining glaze. Divide the pork ribs and slaw between serving plates to serve. Serves 4

Photography: William Meppem

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