ONE OF ADELAIDE’S most enduring chef/restaurateurs, Stratos Pouros, says he tried for years to get a steady supply of “just right” beef ribs out of butchers.

The owner of the steak extraordinaire restaurant, Cork & Cleaver, at Glenunga, says he always enjoyed unctuous rib dishes on his travels.

“I would come back from my trips and talk to butchers, but had trouble getting just what I wanted, to mimic the beautiful American ribs,” he says, maintaining there was a “certain style” to be roasted and smoked, nice and slow.

“One trip I even brought some bones back with me,” he said, in a bid to show his suppliers exactly what he wanted.

“Suddenly, quite recently, dude food has become so popular and the ribs are readily available,” he says, while penning a home version recipe of the smoky dish of meat that falls away from ivory bones.

“People book into the restaurant when they know ribs are on the menu, “ he says, adding they make a great alternative for regulars who have loved Cork & Cleaver steaks for more than 35 years.

He is not fearful that the new restaurant staple will suffer any change in popularity with publication of his recipe, describing the ribs as the “ultimate comfort food” for all seasons, and maintaining it will be a great entertainer at home, “but people will also always love to have such food cooked for them”.

The same goes for his EXPRESS salad, so easy that anyone can whip it up as a very tasty side dish, for anything from a barbecue to a family feast.

BBQ Beef Short Ribs (6 serves)

FOR THE RIBS

  • 2kg beef short ribs, trimmed of excess fat
  • Crispy potato wedges, to serve

FOR THE SAUCE

  • 2 litres tomato sauce
  • 1/4 bottle tabasco sauce
  • 3 tbsp American mustard
  • 100ml liquid hickory smoke*
  • 1 litre honey
  • 100ml soy sauce
  • 150ml malt vinegar

Prep Method:

PREHEAT oven to 160C. Combine all sauce ingredients. Season rigs with salt and pepper and barbecue lightly enough to brown (seal) only.

Place ribs in a large ovenproof dish, or spread over two dishes, and coat with 600mil of the sauce. Cover the ribs with foil and braise for 3 hours, or until tender. Ina a separate pan heat the remaining sauce, reducing if you prefer deeper flavour.

REMOVE RIBS from ovenproof dish and add to the heated sauce.

SERVE ribs in a pile with a good splash of extra sauce, and crispy potato wedges on the side.

*Stratos suggests Tones Liquid Smoke, 118ml, available at Foodland.

Roquefort Style Salad (Makes 4 serves)

YOU WILL NEED

FOR THE DRESSING

  • 300g cream cheese
  • 200g blue vain cheese
  • 150ml French dressing (store-bought will do)
  • 200ml cream
    FOR THE SALAD
  • 2 cos lettuce
  • 100g walnuts
  • 50g blue vain cheese

TO MAKE THE DRESSING blend dressing ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Season to taste.

TO ASSEMBLE THE SALAD cut or tear lettuce into bite-sized pieces, reserving a few inner leaves for garnish.

Drizzle with dressing, scatter with walnuts and crumble the remaining blue cheese on top.

  1. On the Side:

    THERE is ample sauce to go with Strato’s barbecue ribs. Slather them liberally, but if there is any left over, it will keep in the fridge for a couple of weeks (so long as it has not touched the meat). To be sure, simply place back in a saucepan, bring to boil and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Add some tomato puree, and season to tasted. Serve with roasted meats, steak or brush on barbecue kebabs.
  2. Pizza:

    USE A homemade or pre-made pizza dough and stretch thinly on a pizza tray. Instead of spreading with the usual tomato base, use the leftover rib sauce, then build your pizza. It will have a deeper flavour, so complement with bigger flavours on top such as meats and mushrooms. To cut the rich flavour, just before serving, drizzle the pizza with yoghurt or add plops of sour cream.
  3. Some Oomph:

    SAUCES for pasta, a chicken wing marinade, and even gravies, will benefit from a spoonful of leftover sauce, lending some oomph to the flavour. Even a bowl of steamed beans will gain interest when tossed with a sparing spoonful of the sauce. Or, for a quick meat stir-fry, add chilli, a squeeze of lemon, and some fresh herbs like mint and coriander

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