I can’t believe I haven’t shared this with you guys yet but I was hired last month to work on a project with Food & Wine Magazine. Yay!
They hired me to do some recipe development and photography for some online content. And by *some* recipe development I mean 50 (50!) recipes in, like, just over 2 weeks (2 weeks!). But in that 2 weeks there was Christmas, and some catering events I had, and bookings at the supper club and basically I didn’t sleep or breath or eat or do anything at all except for work all of December. But now it’s January and I’ve sent in my work and finally have a minute to breath. Ahhh.
It’s a funny thing to not want to be in a place where you love and not want to do want you love. Normally being in my kitchen makes me a very happy woman but after being chained to my stove for exactly 336 hours I was thrilled to be able to walk away from it for a few days. When I finally returned I wanted to make something simple. I wanted a one pot meal I could throw together without barely even thinking about it. Oh ya, and something that would use up some of the three open and nearly full bottles of bubbly that I found hiding amongst the empties on my kitchen counter on New Year’s Day. Open and nearly full bottles of bubbles … what’s up with that? Seems so unlike me
This stew is a little like a cassoulet, which is what my mind had originally intended it to be. But after leaving out the olives and capers and using pork ribs (who uses pork ribs in a cassoulet anyway?) it felt a lot more like a stew to me. When we had the leftovers the next day I took the meat off the bones and then there was no denying its stew-likeness.
Make sure to follow The Endless Meal!
- 2½ pounds pork ribs (I used side ribs because they're more flavourful but back ribs would work great too)
- 4 tablespoons oil, divided
- 1 large onion, finely minced
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- 2 - 28-ounce cans of crushed tomatoes
- 3 cups cider, white wine or sparkling wine (I used bubbles)
- A small handful of parsley (about 1 ounce)
- 5 thyme branches
- 1 teaspoon dried rosemary (or a few sprigs of fresh rosemary)
- 1 teaspoon sage (or a few fresh sage leaves)
- 2 bay leaves
- 3 cans of beans (I used a combination of white beans and borlotti, but any kind will work)
- Salt and pepper
- 2 packages of pre-washed baby spinach
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large heavy bottomed pot over medium high heat. Season the ribs with a sprinkle of salt. Working in batches so you don't crowd the pan, brown the ribs on all sides. Remove all the ribs from the pot.
- Add the remaining oil and onion and cook, stirring often, until the onion is brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute.
- Add the crushed tomatoes and scrape the bottom of the pot with your wooden spoon to remove any of the tasty browned spots. Add the cider, wine or bubbles, parsley, thyme, rosemary, sage and bay leaves. Add the pork back to the pot, ensuring that it is in a single layer, standing the ribs on their ends if need be.
- Cook, covered, over very low heat for 3-4 hours, or until the ribs are very tender. You'll want to keep the ribs at a very low simmer.
- Once the ribs are tender remove the pot from the heat. Remove the parsley, thyme sprigs and bay leaves and discard.
- Return to heat, add the beans and heat through. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- To serve: place a few handfuls of spinach in each bowl and top with the stew.
- Enjoy with a big glass of red wine!