Memorial Day that was not

This was the first year I did not attend a memorial day anything. Boo WHOO. So I decided to just make it a culinary exercise day or rather weekend. First let us go with the empanadas. , I have these on my menu but have not actually mass-produced them or done them in an easy fashion. The first time I made them, I made the dough from scratch. Lets just say, if the King of Myanmar wanted me to make them from scratch for him for authenticity, I would. If someone wanted to pay for that time, I would be doing them all night. But, as we know, that “isht” takes a day to make so that will not occur anytime soon. So I went to C-Town and bought empanadas skins. I used some pantry ingredients: walnuts, guava jam and Comte cheese. I cut the skins in half, filled them, sealed them, egg washed them and then made up a time. 20 minutes is usually a good guess to cook pastries, and as a rule you then check and gauge the amount of time you will need to completely cook. I did two halves and one whole. Wow the whole puffed up. I can imagine this filled with ground meat and cheese–for lunch or dinner. I can also imagine, an apple filled one.

Then I got happy and decided to buy some ribs. I was absent-minded and forgot that ribs cannot be done in an hour.

In the past I cooked ribs at school and my mom also made ribs at home. There are a few schools of thought. There is the marinate them then throw them on the grill school. Then there is the boil them and then finish them off in the oven. Then then there is the just let them cook in the oven for 3 hours.
If you want to weigh in on what has worked for you–please leave a comment.

So I went with option two. I went a little up market though. First I salted and black peppered the ribs. Then I added cumin and some Cajun seasoning. I threw some other stuff in there and then I let it sit. I decided to open a bottle of beer, and I took the last of a bottle of red wine. I put all of this in a pot and barely covered the ribs. It was not enough so I added some seltzer water, mandarin flavored and I also added some mandarin juice. I let all boil for about 45 minutes. The key is to have a really thick boiling liquid so that the flavors mesh into the meat. I put very little water as that is like straight boiling-boiling out the flavor.

After I put them in the oven on top of a grill, and let the meat cook for 1.5 hours over a pan. 45 minutes in, I flipped the meat. For cooking time it could have gone for about 1 3/4 or even 2 hours so it would literally have fallen off the bone. The last 1/2 an hour I based the meat with my bbq mix. This is when the sugar in the bbq sauce can be a problem. You can add water to the pan or more water to the pan.

We had the ribs ,, a few days later and for my first run at ribs at home, I would say maybe a 6. I have a few more notches to climb to reach my satisfaction level.

Till then, share your ribs stories, successes and failures.

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