Capital Spare Ribs

June 29, 2017

Another chance to make one of your takeaway favourites at home, this recipe is one of the best things that can happen to a spare rib! The recipe originates in the north of China, around the capital city of Peking (thus the name). Double cooked to give a tender inside and a crispy outside, the ribs are then doused in a sweet/sour/chilli sauce, resulting in an incredibly tasty (although admittedly very messy!) finger food treat. The sauce is basically a slightly tarted up sweet and sour, in which the secret ingredient is our freeze-dried pineapple powder, and to give extra chilli crunch and heat, just add more chopped chillis right at the end. Serve as a starter to a Chinese meal, or just alongside it – or go fusion and simply accompany with a fat baked potato!


1Cut the rack of ribs in half, then combine the other ingredients in a pan of water.

2Place the ribs in the pan and bring to a gentle simmer, then simmer the ribs for 40 minutes.

3Remove the ribs from the pan and allow to cool before deconstructing the rack.

4Cut the rack into individual ribs, then chop each rib into 2/3 pieces.

5While you are simmering the ribs, make the sauce – fry the garlic, ginger and chilli in a little oil for a few minutes before adding all the other sauce ingredients.

6Bring the sauce to a simmer and let it bubble away for 15 minutes.

7Combine the cornflour with a few drops of water to create a stiff liquid, then carefully add to the sauce, stirring all the time, until the sauce thickens.

8It is easy to get the proportion of cornflour wrong, so if your sauce ends up too thick, simply add a little water until the desired consistency is achieved – the same consistency as honey or sweet chili sauce is what we're after.

9Season the cornflour with which you will coat the ribs, with a little salt and pepper.

10Now toss the ribs in this until thoroughly coated.

11Heat a couple of inches of oil in a deep frying pan to 180degrees, and carefully add the coated ribs.

12Fry the ribs until they are crispy and golden – as the ribs are already cooked this won't take long, 5 minutes or so.

13Carefully remove the ribs and drain on kitchen paper, then in a bowl combine the ribs and the sauce until the ribs are thoroughly coated.

14Garnish with chopped spring onion and chilli, and serve.


For the Ribs

1 rack of spare ribs (the small meaty ones are best)

2tbs soy sauce

3tsp Spice Mountain’s Chinese 5 spice

1tbs garlic/ginger paste

1tsp chili powder

2tbs honey or our superb palm sugar

2tbs cornflour

For the Sauce

3tbs tomato ketchup

2tsp soy sauce

4 cloves garlic,minced

1 inch fresh ginger, minced

1 large red chilli, minced

2tbs honey or palm sugar

2tsp pineapple fruit powder

150ml water

1tsp cornflour