Monday, August 16, 2010

CI: Spareribs with Tomatoes and Vegetables for Polenta

I really really wanted the picture to turn out as well as the dish but for the life of me, I could not get a decent least not one that showed off the dish I had actually made instead of resembling every other dish I've made with tomatoes recently.

I've recently had a chance to start baking along again with the group over at Cooking Italy. This past year we've cooking from Marcella Hazan's book "Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking." And although I had to miss the first few recipes this month, I was finally able to catch up this week with the cumbersomely titled but still tasty "Spareribs with Tomatoes and Vegetables for Polenta."

Unfortunately, being the slightly lazy cook that I am, I wasn't able to quite manage to get spareribs that were cut into finger sized pieces as recommended by Marcella. When I asked the butcher at Jewel, she gave me a strange look and said that while they could cut the rack into single ribs, cutting the ribs into bite sized pieces might cause them to cut off a finger in the process. So I made do with that and tossed in some sausages per Marcella's recommendation.

Apart from substituting sausages for half the ribs, I also went with some fire roasted tomatoes in lieu of the Italian plum tomatoes and went with a white cornmeal polenta.

I'm not a big fan of ribs, and even though I liked this dish, I do see myself being converted to the joys of eating ribs. But for a Sunday dinner that didn't require a tremendous amount of work, I still enjoyed it.


3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2/3 cup chopped onion
1 1/2 lbs spareribs cut into single ribs
1 pound mild sausages
2/3 cup chopped celery
2/3 cup chopped carrot
1 1/2 cups chopped Italian Plum Tomatoes with juice
Fresh Pepper ground from the mill

Place olive oil and onions in deep pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are a light gold. Place ribs in pan, turning them several times until browned. Add carrots and celery and cook until they are tender.

Add tomatoes, salt, and several grindings of pepper and place lid over pot, leaving lid slightly ajar. Cook at a slow simmer until meat is very tender, approximately 1 1/2 hours. Add 1/2 cup water if ribs being to stick to bottom of pan. Several over polenta.

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