Spicy Grilled Ribs
Most people consider ribs to be beer food. But a flavorful, spicy red wine laced with dark fruit flavors mirrors the personality of the sauce in this dish. Some Zinfandels aged in new oak barrels taste a little smoky in their finishperfect for grilled foods. For an all-American barbecue, serve with coleslaw and corn bread. For a Latin touch, serve with black beans and corn on the cob rubbed with chili powder and lime. Dependable: Zinfandel from the United States. Daring: balanced white Zinfandel or other off-dry rosé.
- 2 racks baby back ribs, about 4 lb. total
- 2 to 3 Tbs. chili powder
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
For the sauce:
- 1 cup tomato ketchup
- 1/3 cup cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar or 1/2 cup honey
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 Tbs. Worcestershire sauce
- 2 Tbs. chili powder
- 1 Tbs. dry mustard
- 2 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
Preheat an oven to 350°F.
Rub the ribs evenly with the chili powder, salt and pepper. Place on a rack in a roasting pan and cover loosely with aluminum foil. Bake until very tender, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, make the sauce: In a saucepan, stir together the ketchup, vinegar, orange juice, brown sugar, garlic, Worcestershire sauce, chili powder, mustard, cumin, ginger and cinnamon. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the flavors are well blended, about 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat a broiler.
Season the ribs lightly with salt and pepper and place on the oiled grill rack or on an oiled rack in a broiler pan. Brush liberally with some of the sauce. Grill or broil until caramelized, 8 to 10 minutes. Turn, brush with additional sauce, and cook on the other side until crusty and caramelized, about 8 minutes more.
Transfer to a cutting board and cut the ribs apart. Arrange on a warmed platter and serve. Pour the remaining sauce into a small bowl and pass at the table. Serves 4.