Episode #1: Spare Ribs

Episode #1:
Spare Ribs

With an entire pig to eat, James and Sam kick off the very first episode of The Aporkalypse Podcast by tackling not one but TWO whole racks of pork spare ribs. But which rack will be tastier? Low and slow ‘Dreamboat Jerry’s smoked BBQ ribs, or fast and furious Chinese char sui…?

Fast & Furious Char Sui Ribs

Inspired by Chinese Sticky Spare Ribs @ CafeDelites.com


  • 1 rack pork spare ribs, belly still attached, seperated in to individual riblets – around 2kg.
  • 80ml light soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons Shaoxing rice wine
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons muscavado sugar
  • 4 cloves minced garlic
  • 1 ⁄2 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder
  • 1 toasted sesame seeds to garnish
For the Char Sui Glaze:
  • 80ml hoisin sauce
  • 80ml soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • 2 tablespoons muscavado sugar
  • 3 cloves minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon Chinese five spice powder


  • To make the marinade combine hoisin sauce, soy sauce, rice wine, maple syrup, sugar, garlic and five-spice powder in a bowl. Pour half on to the ribs and massage into the meat. Reseve the remaining marinade for later use. Cover ribs with clingfilm and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
  • After marinading, preheat oven grill to medium heat. Drain ribs and discard the marinade. Line a grill pan with aluminium foil. Place pork onto a wire rack in the grill pan and cook for 30 minutes on each side, basting regularly with the reserved marinade. Keep an eye on the ribs at all times – they are liable to spit and burn as they cook.
  • Whilst the ribs are finishing under the grill cooking, prepare the glaze by combining the remaining ingredients in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for about 10 minutes until thickened. Be careful not to let the temperature get too high the sugar in the sauce is liable to burn.
  • Pile the ribs on to a large plate and slather over the char sui glaze. Enjoy!

‘Dreamboat Jerry’s Low & Slow BBQ Spare Ribs

Inspired by St. Louis-Style Ribs by TheSpruceEats.com


  • 1 rack pork spare ribs, belly still attached, unseperated as a single piece of meat – around 2kg
  • 1 litre apple juice
  • 100g salt
  • a few black peppercorns, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons English Mustard
  • A few big handfuls of your favourite smoking chips – I used cherry wood and apple wood
For the rub:
  • 100g muscavado sugar
  • 3 tablespoons onion powder
  • 3 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons Merken Chilean spice powder – or substitute with 1 tablespoon hot paprika and 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dry mustard
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
Chunky smoked tomato BBQ sauce
  • 6 medium sized tomatoes
  • 500ml homemade chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon muscavado sugar
  • 2 tablespoons paprika
  • 1 tablespoon Merken Chilean spice powder – or substitute with half a tablespoon of hot paprika and half a tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 garlic cloves minced


  • In a large pan, prepare the brine by combining the apple juice with the salt, bay leaves and crushed peppercorns. Place over a medium heat until the salt has dissolved. Allow to cool.
  • Submerge the ribs in the brine. Cover with cling film and refrigerate at least over night or up to 36 hours.
  • When ready to cook, remove ribs from the brine and gently dry with kitchen towel. Smother in mustard.
  • Combine all the rub ingredients in a bowl. Pat the ribs all over with the rub evenly. The mustard will help the rub stick to the meat.
  • Soak smoking chips in water (or apple juice or cider or beer) for at least half an hour.
  • Light your smoker or a kettle barbecue on an indirect heat and raise temperature to 110c/225f.
  • Place the ribs on the cool side of the barbecue. Add a handful of the smoking chips on to the fire and close the lid.
  • Smoke for at least four hours at 110c/225f – spraying with apple juice every couple of hours – until the internal temperature of the ribs reaches 96c/205f. Our ribs took ten hours to reach this temperature.
  • To make the chunky smoked tomato BBQ sauce – add the tomatoes to the smoker for two hours. When darkened and wrinkled but still holding their shape, remove and add to a pan with the remaining ingredients. On the stove bring the pan to a boil then reduce to a medium heat. Reduce for 20 minutes until thickened and saucy.
  • When the ribs have reached 96c/225f, remove from the heat and allow to rest for 30 minutes. Slice and serve.