It is cold as hell* here in Hamburg, cold to the point that showering is painful and we are taking up refuge in bed for large swathes of the day. The radiator in the kitchen is the highest one in the building, and it gave up the ghost days ago. In the interest of warding off pneumonia without decamping and incurring massive hotel bills, we have been putting everything but the baby in the oven: yesterday’s Morroccan Beef Stew was treated to a three-hour stint, today’s pork short ribs spent seven happy hours at 200 degrees. This evening, we made walnut biscotti (biscotti meaning twice-baked. Take that, Russian cold front!) and tomorrow’s breakfast will be baked oatmeal.
The ribs were good, but they firmly divided the household into two camps. Camp A thought that they were very tender (no huge surprise after their seven hours in the oven,) but that the spice rub relied too heavily on the smokiness of the BBQ sauce to balance its sweetness. In short, they might place at a Tyner Superbowl Rib Cookoff but they weren’t going to win it. Camp G, on the other hand, thought that they were the best ribs, nay, the best dinner, ever produced in our humble abode, and could not get over the tangy smoky taste. Camp G’s comment: “There are people in Europe who have bad things to say about Americans. This would change their minds.”
It is worth noting that Camp G had never had Stubbs’ BBQ Smoky Mesquite BBQ Sauce (killer care package, by the way, Laura R.!! KILLER!), and that his foreign policy comment, though earnest, depends heavily on a recent application of Stubbs’ sauce. During the Bush era, I would have said that there is not enough quality BBQ sauce on earth to repair our reputation on foreign soil. Given the Obama administration’s fence-mending and today’s discovery that 1/4 bottle=1 changed mind, things are looking up!
People of the world, unite! Pork ribs for everyone! Unless your religion forbids you to eat pork!
Damn. That’s not going to work, is it? Maybe tomorrow I should spend some nice warm oven time perfecting my recipe for chicken ribs.
*Oh, really? Hell is hot, you say? Prove it.