Sticky spare ribs

Here pork spare ribs are simmered first to tenderise the meat and to remove some of the fat, before being roasted in a deliciously sticky orange and mustard glaze. Choose the meatiest ribs you can find. When serving them, put out finger bowls and plenty of napkins for cleaning fingers.

Reader's Digest


  • 12 meaty pork spare ribs, about 900g in total
  • 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sunflower oil
  • large strip of orange zest
  • 150 ml orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2 tablespoons dark soft brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
  • 1/2–1 teaspoon chilli powder, or to taste


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C.
  2. Trim as much fat as possible off the spare ribs, then put them in a saucepan. Cover with cold water and add 2 tablespoons of the vinegar. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 20 minutes, skimming the surface from time to time.
  3. Meanwhile, combine the remaining 1 tablespoon vinegar, the oil, orange zest and juice, tomato paste, sugar, worcestershire sauce, mustard and chilli powder in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Simmer for 4–5 minutes, or until slightly reduced.
  4. Drain the ribs and arrange them in a single layer in a large roasting tin. Pour over the orange mixture and turn the ribs to coat them evenly. Loosely cover with foil and roast for 20 minutes.
  5. Remove the foil and roast for a further 20–25 minutes, turning and basting occasionally, until the ribs are dark brown and sticky. Transfer to a large serving dish and serve warm.

Makes 12 spare ribs
Preparation: 15 minutes
Cooking: About 1 hour


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