Am-boy Ribs

rib horizontal 830x10241 Am boy Ribs

No other cooking speaks summer to me but barbecue aka inihaw. A day at the beach or on a picnic in never complete without it as the aroma and the sizzle builds up one’s appetite.  There are a couple of restos where the barbecue ribs are tops, but I also enjoy them at home because the meat is heftier and big to the bite. I pick the meat cut myself which is either a rack of baby back or country style which I can cut into “riblet’s”. That way, we can eat with our fingers without a care in the world.

I’m calling this recipe Amboy—a post-war term meaning “American Boy” which is a term used to call Filipinos who are Americanized  or grew up in America. Amboy, because I’ve added some pinoy twist like calamansi to this American comfort-food favourite.

(On a side note, it’s nice to know that even Hollywood actress Gwyneth Paltrow was said to have used our very our Datu Puti Toyo-mansi in an Asian recipe. Nice.)

Ribs do go well with sides like corn, potato or macaroni salad, coleslaw or chopped salad. But like true-blue Pinoys that we all are—no matter how American our rib feasts may be, it is never EVER complete without rice, especially garlic rice.

Amboy BBQ Pork Ribs

Basic Rub

  • 2 kilos pork ribs
  • 2 T sea salt
  • 2 T packed brown sugar
  • 1 T sweet or hot paprika
  • 2 T finely minced garlic
  • 1 t cayenne pepper
  • 1-2 t cumin powder
  • 1 t chili powder

Put all ingredients in a bowl and stir till well blended. Rub the mixture on the prok ribs and wrap in thick aluminium foil to marinate. You don’t really need an open pit grill, an oven will do.  Bake in the oven for about 1.5-2 hours at 250 degrees F.


Cook’s Tip 1: I learned from a Chef that wrapping in aluminium foil cooks the ribs without drying it out and lets it hold its form as it becomes tender.

rib brush 1024x713 Am boy Ribs

When cooked, generously brush ribs with your BBQ sauce, and this time keep the foil open or finish it off over charcoal grill. Slather for another 2 times, until the sauce caramelizes and sticks to the rib—so to speak.

Cook’s Tip 2: Don’t  grill or bake the sauce with the meat because the sauce contains sugar which can burn easily during the cooking process. This might result in a burnt exterior but raw interior.

BBQ Sauce

  • 2 T butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely minced
  • 1 ½ t chilli powder
  • 2 T fresh calamansi juice
  • 2 T Worcestershire sauce
  • 4-5 T dark brown sugar (If you have honey–bring sugar down to 3 T, and add 2-3 T of honey)
  • 1 c tomato sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Optional: chilli flakes or 2 pcs of chopped siling labuyo (bird’s eye chilli)
  • If you chance upon “liquid smoke”in bigger supermarkets, add 1-2T in the mixture.

Saute onion and garlic in butter over low heat, until onion is transparent and garlic is light yellow. Add the rest of the ingredients and continue to cook over low heat. Simmer for about 15-20 minutes until sauce is thick. This sauce is chunky. If you want it velvety smooth–puree in your blender. Serve the remaining sauce on the side.

rib plated Am boy Ribs

© 2012, Kitchen Kitchie Koo. All rights reserved.


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