Recipe: Bourbon Ribs

Spicy, sticky, fall apart ribs are a firm favourite across the world. Is it any wonder why? I always have a bottle of whisky on standby and a rack of ribs in the freezer ready for when I have that urge to pig-out. My food heaven has to be ribs and wings.

These Bourbon glazed ribs are tender as you like and the glaze can be used to cook with but also as a dipping sauce, you can omit the Bourbon if you really need to and you still get a BBQ sauce which John Torode described as blo*dy good.

(serves 2 if you share nice or 1 rack will feed a carnivore nicely!)


1 large rack of Pork ribs
1 chicken stock cube
1 star anise
salt and pepper
1/2 a birds eye chilli, finely sliced (optional)
1 spring onion, finely sliced

for the Bourbon Glaze:
4 Tbsp ketchup
2 Tbsp Brown sauce
1 Tsp Mustard Powder mixed with 1 tsp water
2 Tbsp Honey
1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 Tbsp dark soy sauce
1 Tsp malt vinegar
1 Tsp lemon juice
1 Tsp sugar
3 Tbsp water
1 1/2 Tbsp Bourbon
1/2 a birds eye chilli, finely sliced


Begin by making the Bourbon glaze, place all of the ingredients into a small saucepan then gently heat while stirring. Allow to simmer gently for 15 minutes then turn off the heat and set aside until needed.

Pre-heat the oven to 150°c. Place a roasting tin on your hob on a medium heat and fill two thirds of the way up with water. Add the chicken stock cube and bring to a simmer. Add the star anise, season the ribs well and add to the stock. Cover with foil and then place a smaller roasting tin on top of the foil and weight it down, this will simply stop the ribs from curling up as they poach. Simmer the ribs in the poaching liquid for 45 minutes to tenderise and infuse flavour. Remove the roasting tin, weights and foil and discard all but 1cm of the stock keeping this thin layer of stock and the ribs in the roasting tin. At this stage season the ribs well with salt ad pepper and using a pastry brush baste the ribs with 1 third of the Bourbon glaze. Cover the tin with foil and place in the oven for 1 hour and 30 minutes.

When the time is up, remove the foil and baste the ribs with an additional coating of the Bourbon glaze but don’t use it all, reserve at least a third for dipping! Turn the oven up to 200°c. Roast the ribs for a further 20 minutes until lightly charred on the outside.

Allow the ribs to rest for 5 minutes then top with the finely sliced spring onions and chilli and serve with the reserved sauce, chips and coleslaw


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