Contains: Nightshades. Is: Whole30, Paleo, gluten-free, there is no added sugar.
Besides the pork, I’m including recipes here for sides that can help you make this a good nutritious Whole30 meal. Use or ignore – TBH, I made sides from previously-at-home ingredients, without stepping out to a supermarket. The pork itself came from a farm share where I get free-ranged, responsibly fed meat that was raised locally (well, back in Connecticut) every year or two. I get a full half a porker, and can ask for my favorite cuts. You definitely want to do a non-supermarket and healthy pig a bit more low and slow than the factory-reared animal you find in your supermarket. These guys get to move around and enjoy the outdoors, which both adds more flavor to the meat, and more texture to the musculature. And besides being more nutritious, they really only have one bad day. Yes, I know, but everything that eventually dies DOES still have that last bad day.
For timing inspiration (I used different seasonings), I refer you to Kitchen Dreaming
I used the Whole Foods 365 brand of diced fire-roasted tomatoes. They have no added sugars or sweeteners, and the fire-roasted flavor sounded good to me. (Indeed, I look at any canned tomato product to be certain there are no added sugars, Whole30 or not. If I do need to add sugar for a specific preparation, I can certainly do that on my ownsome. I also try to buy anything containing highly acidic foods in jars instead of cans, but this one tells me they have a non-BPA plastic liner inside. BPA can leach out from most lined jars, and those that are just metal will leach out that nasty metallic aftertaste.
A dry rub is not essential – one can just do the first stage of cooking with a little salt and ground pepper. I find that pork requires less salt than does beef – more intrinsic flavor.
I prefer, and usually obtain, bone-in country-style pork ribs. By the way, these are not really “ribs”, but come from the shoulder region of the pig. I’d say this along with any of the shoulder proper is the tastiest part of the hog. And unless I’m making carnitas, I prefer NOT to cook this primal area of the pig to that carnitas-shredded texture.
Since this is the last Whole30 dish of the month, I’m cooking up a full dinner here for you: the pork, pan-fried veggies (use what you have to hand – that’s what I did here without another lengthy grocery run). You can include a side of new potatoes pan fried with olive oil and/or ghee. A month of Whole30 does not mean one is going starch-free!
Yes, you can also add on a salad, or sub that in for the leafy greens.
PS: if you want dessert with your dinner: a bowl of berries is Whole30-compliant, as well as being exceedingly simple. Since I typically don’t eat desserts anyway, and the berries at this time of the year around here are not so interesting, I declined to do this.
Prep Time: 10 minutes.
Cook Time: 3 hours.
Rest Time: 10 minutes.
Oven Baked Country-Style Pork Ribs with Tomato
- Country style pork ribs, preferably bone-in, around a pound / 450 grams.
- sea salt and ground black pepper. (A little salt goes a LONG way!)
- 1/4 diced medium sized white or yellow onion.
- 1 can of diced roasted tomato, about 14-15 ounces / 410 grams.
- 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
- 1 tablespoon ancho chili powder (or another favorite. If you go with a hotter one, add less at first).
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika.
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder. (Or, 1-2 cloves peeled minced fresh garlic)
- 1/4 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes
Pre-heat your oven to 250 F.
Lightly season the pork with a little salt and a good amount of the pepper, rubbing it into the meat. (You may also use a seasoned rub containing items like smoked paprika, chili powders, and so forth – I chose not to do so this time.)
Arrange the meat on a roasting rack, and put this on top of a baking tray lined with aluminum foil to catch drippings (for easier clean-up). If the pork is boneless, lightly cover the meat with foil to prevent burning.
Cook at this low heat for 90 minutes.
Meanwhile, when closer to the 90 minute mark, make your sauce:
Sauté the onion in a dash of cooking oil in a small skillet or saucepan, about 5 – 10 minutes. Mix all the other ingredients in with, and bring this to a low simmer, stirring constantly. Reduce to a relatively thick consistency. This will take 10-15 minutes. Taste, and adjust seasonings, including any additional salt or pepper.
Remove the ribs from the oven, drain off any drippings from the baking pan, and re-set the oven to 350 F. I also removed the roasting rack and set the pork back down in the pan.
Add about 1/3rd – 1/2 the sauce to the tops of the ribs. The rest of the sauce should be kept just warm on the cook top, while you return the ribs back to the oven (uncovered) once temperature is reached. Allow to cook for 30 minutes.
At the 30 minute mark, bring the ribs back out of the oven. Flip each, and put more sauce on what used to be the underside of the meat (but are now the top), reserving a small amount for later. Return to oven for another 30 minutes of cooking.
At this point (a total of 60 minutes at 350 F), remove the pork, flip again, dab on remaining sauce where most needed/desired, and return to the oven.
In just 15 more minutes, pull the pork from the oven, turn oven off, and you are done cooking the pork, except for about a ten-minute rest.
- Celery, 1 stalk, chopped
- 1 bell pepper, de-seeded and chopped
- 3 green onions/scallions, chopped coarsely
- 1-2 teaspoons cooking oil or ghee
Just before the 15 minutes are up, prepare to sauté the above vegetables (or others of your choosing) in a little cooking oil, along with any salt or pepper you prefer. While resting the pork, cook the veggies.
To serve, divvy out the pork, and top with the sautéed veggies.
This week, we link to: