Cookbook Mania! James Beard’s Menus for Entertaining–Glazed Spareribs

by Sarah on November 28, 2009

I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH!
It’s indispensable.  Particularly if you ever give large, I mean LARGE cocktail or holiday parties.  He’s got every area of party-giving covered, from late breakfast, to ladies-only lunches, to dinners, buffets, cocktail parties, outdoor parties and big celebrations.  Some of the recipes might look dated to the more modern palate, but don’t judge a book by it’s cover–hahaha, sorry.

No, seriously.  The Dean of American Cookery will not steer you wrong.

From The James Beard Foundation:
James Beard’s Menus for Entertaining
Delacorte Press, 1965. Revised in 1970, 1975, 1996, and 2004 (paperback).
“To entertain successfully one must create with the imagination of a playwright, plan with the skill of a director, and perform with the instincts of an actor,” Beard, a consummate entertainer and would-be actor, wrote in the introduction to James Beard’s Menus for Entertaining. The cover photo shows Beard in tuxedo and trademark bow tie, carving a joint festooned with hâtelets. But, like all of Beard’s books, his Menus for Entertaining is eclectic and democratic; it runs the gamut from artichoke bottoms with foie gras and saddle of lamb Prince Orloff to country ham and Irish stew. It offers low-calorie recipes, too.


I am lucky enough to have scored a first edition of this delectable book, just because I’m a nerd like that.  It’s not in the most pristine condition, and who cares really, because I want to actually USE it.
I am going to share one of my favorite recipes with you right now.
Grocery list:
First, we make the sauce.  Do not succumb to the urge to deviate from this recipe.  It’s just too delicious to tamper with.  I make the sauce a day or two in advance.  Like a fine wine, it improves with age.   Add ketchup to soy sauce.
Add honey, chopped garlic and whisk.
Add a teaspoon of Tabasco or to taste.
Store in the fridge in an airtight container until you’re ready to use it.  I stuck it back into the empty ketchup bottle–it made it really easy to squeeze onto the ribs later!
Ribs.  The recipe calls for pork spareribs, which I usually use.  Juicy and succulent.  This time I got a big bundle of baby back ribs from Costco and tried it with them.  Lay your racks out on a sheet pan and liberally coat them with kosher salt and pepper.  Seems kind of wrong to put kosher salt on pork but oh well.
I roasted them in a 300* oven for about 3 hours.  The meat should be tender between the bones and pull away easily.  When cool, cut the racks into individual portions.
When you are ready to put them together to serve, preheat the oven to 450*.  Brush them well with the soy-ketchup glaze and roast for about 10 minutes, or until they are glossy and crisp.  Baste them a few times while cooking.  Voila!
Really delicious.  A good glaze for everyday ribs or for appetizers at a party.  Easy to make the two components ahead of time, then just reheat with the glaze when ready to serve.
Oh, and the verdict on spareribs vs. baby back ribs?  I think I preferred the spareribs.  They stayed a bit more moist.  But the baby backs were easier to deal with and less messy.  Both good!

 

Cookbook Mania! James Beard’s Menus for Entertaining–Glazed Spareribs

Ingredients

  • *****************************************************
  • James Beard's Glazed Spareribs for a Cocktail Party for 30
  • from Menus for Entertaining, 1965, Delacorte Press
  • You will need about 20 pounds. Roast them, a few pounds at a time with salt and pepper for 45 minutes in a 350* oven. This can be done well ahead of time. Cool the ribs, and cut them into individual portions.
  • (I do the ribs a bit differently--roast whatever amount you want at 300* for 2-3 hours. Low and slow will make them a bit more tender and easier to eat)
  • Prepare a glazing sauce for each five pounds of spareribs:
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 1/2 cups ketchup
  • 1 1/2 cups honey
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon Tabasco

Instructions

  • *****************************************************
  • James Beard's Glazed Spareribs for a Cocktail Party for 30
  • from Menus for Entertaining, 1965, Delacorte Press
  • You will need about 20 pounds. Roast them, a few pounds at a time with salt and pepper for 45 minutes in a 350* oven. This can be done well ahead of time. Cool the ribs, and cut them into individual portions.
  • (I do the ribs a bit differently--roast whatever amount you want at 300* for 2-3 hours. Low and slow will make them a bit more tender and easier to eat)
  • Prepare a glazing sauce for each five pounds of spareribs:
  • Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Place spareribs on racks over baking pans, brush well with the glaze, and roast for 10 minutes at 450* or until they are glossy and crisp. Baste several times during baking.
http://www.undercovercaterer.com/2009/11/james-beards-glazed-spareribs-recipe/


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