Sweet and Sour Spare Ribs

When I was living in Deventer, the Netherlands, I would normally go to this open market where you can find all kinds of fresh vegetables and meat with good deals. There was a meat stall that was my favorite because they sold good quality ribs with very cheap prices. With €1 worth of ribs, you could make a great meat dish. So ribs was always my first choice for meat purchasing.

There are many ways to cook ribs, the most usual dish I make with ribs is Sweet and Sour Spare Ribs. This dish is shiny and brown in color, and has a nice sweet and sour taste.

Sweet and Sour Spare Ribs

Ingredients: (serves 2)

600g ribs
2 spring onions
4 tbsp cooking wine
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp sugar
4 tbsp vinegar
5 tbsp cool water
cooking oil


  1. Cut the ribs into small sections of about 5cm long and 4cm wide. Cut the spring onions into sections of 7cm long. Put 1 tbsp of sugar and rest of the seasoning ingredients in a bowl, mix well.
  2. Boil a pot of water, put the ribs in and bring it to boil to get rid of the blood foam. Take out, rinse clean and drain.
  3. Heat up a wok over strong heat, add 3 tbsp of cooking oil and 2 tbsp of sugar, keep stirring. When the sugar is melted and turns caramel, put the ribs in and stir-fry until all the ribs are covered by the caramel evenly. Put the spring onions in, pour the mixed seasoning sauce in and quickly cover the wok with a lid. Leave it to cook for a half minute, remove the lid and stir. If the sauce is not enough to just cover the ribs, add some hot water. Bring it to boil, cover the wok with the lid, turn to low heat and cook for about 30 minutes.
  4. Take off the lid, turn to strong heat to reduce the juice. Keep stiring until the thickened sauce wraps around the ribs evenly. Take out and ready to serve.
  1. Make sure to put the ribs into boiling water but not cold water, because the hot water can quickly lock the nutrients in the meat.
  2. When stirring the ribs, always stir from the bottom of the wok to ensure they won’t stick on the bottom.
  3. Before reducing the juice, remember to taste it, if it is not flavored enough, add some salt. Keep an eye on the juice to make sure it won’t reduce to fast and burn the ribs.
  4. I have half a bottle of beer left from last night, so I used that instead of cooking wine.

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