Tex-Mex Appetizerfinger-sized ribs

Finger-Sized Ribs
(Serves 6-8)

These are 3-hanky ribs—you'll need one for your mouth, one for your fingers, one for your lap. That's 3 for every rib you eat.

2 lbs. pork ribs
1 8-oz. can tomato sauce
1/4 C apple cider vinegar
1/4 C brown sugar
2 T Dijon mustard
2 T Worcestershire sauce
1 T chili powder (see sidebar)

Preheat oven to 450. Cut ribs into smaller 2-rib portions. Place on a single layer in a roasting pan. Roast for 20 minutes. Drain off fat.

Meanwhile, combine the remainder of the ingredients in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer and cook for 10 minutes.

Brush sauce over ribs, turning and basting once or twice for 25- 30 more minutes until ribs are tender. Serve on a platter with plenty of napkins!

| See more Tex-Mex recipes |

Tips & Glossary

Plenty of heat! For many that’s the pleasure of Tex-Mex food. But if you’re sensitive to throat-burning, eye-popping peppers, then turn the heat down—just reduce the peppers.

Chili Powder: dried ground chili peppers typically mixed with cumin, garlic powder, and oregano. You can make your own blend, adding cinnamon, cloves, coriander, paprika, and nutmeg. Briefly heat dried peppers in a skillet to release flavors, then grind them into powder.

Chorizo: a spicey pork sausage. OurTex-Mex recipes use the Mexican version—fresh pork which is cooked before eating. Spanish Chorizo is cured, ready to eat like pepperoni. If unavailable use a hot Italian sausage.

Chili Pepper: any small hot pepper, as opposed to larger, milder bell peppers; includes, cayenne (red), chipotle (smoke-dried jalapeños), habanero, jalapeño, paprika, poblano, serrano, and tabasco.

Chimichanga: a deep fried tortilla, filled with rice, beans, cheese, or meat, and folded into a rectangular packet. It's thought to have originated in Arizona.

Coriander: also known as cilantro and Mexican or Chinese parsley. Both fresh leaves and dried ground seeds are used in Mexican, Mid-East, Asian, and Indian cuisines.

Cumin: an aromatic kin to the parsley and carrot plant; an important ingredient in chili powder. Used especially in Indian curries, but also in Mexican, Thai and Asian dishes It has an earthy, peppery flavor.

Enchilada: made using corn tortillas, dipped in a sauce, filled and rolled up. They are placed in a casserole dish, topped with sauce and cheese, then baked.

Quesadilla: (kay-sa-dee-ya), literally, “little cheese thing.” In Tex-Mex cooking it has come to mean a sort of grilled cheese sandwich, using two tortillas filled primarily with cheese, grilled in a skillet or griddle, then cut into wedges.


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