Baby Back Ribs for Baby

Every Sunday, we make the pilgrimage to our local farmer’s market in search of many hard-to-get treasures, but none more so than the racks of organic pork ribs sold by a farmer who makes the arduous trek (especially in the 70 mph gales and horizontal rain we’re enjoying at the moment) down to Cardiff from the mountains of mid-Wales.

All of the farm’s pork cuts are excellent (I’ve never tasted bacon so flavourful and yet unsalty). But it’s the ribs that really rock…..and why, no doubt, they seem to fly off his stall so quickly each week.

Last week we lucked out and scored two racks. Running home lest we get mugged by organic pork-crazed foodies, we contemplated how to cook these beauties. Chili rub sounded good but maybe a bit spicy for the kids so, in the end, we plumped for one of Jowa’s grandma’s recipes – Ribs and Sauerkraut.

Here’s how to make it.

What You’ll Need

Two racks of baby back pork ribs (organic ‘natch)
Two jars or packets of sauerkraut (we’ve got a great Polish deli that stocks 930 gram jars of the stuff)
Four tablespoons of brown sugar

What You Do

Cut the rack into single ribs. Then mix them with the sauerkraut and sugar in a large, oven-proof baking dish, making sure that the ribs are covered with the mixture (the sauerkraut is key to the recipe as it provides the moisture necessary for really tender ribs).


Bake at a medium heat for 2 1/2 – three hours (Our oven is a little unpredictable so check the meat after 2 1/2 hours – it should be completely tender and almost falling off the bone. This way you get to steal a rib before the rest of the family devours them).

Serve with your appropriate side dishes (mashed potato and broccoli is our comfort food of choice).

Keen readers will probably have noticed that ribs are best eaten if you have teeth. No problem, we just give our little one our gnawed bones and she sucks the rest of the meat off and polishes off the marrow to boot. Waste not, want not…..I think my grandmother used to tell me.

- Matthew

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