Chinese-spiced pork ribs with cabbage slaw

Chinese-spiced pork ribs with cabbage slaw

Tara Fisher

Chinese cooks really know how to use the lesser-known cuts of meat, so no slow-cooking collection could be without a few of their techniques and flavours. This recipe is great: just put the ribs in the oven and they become lovely and sticky as they cook. Serving it with slaw is more American than Chinese, but they work so well together.


Quantity Ingredient


Quantity Ingredient
2kg individual, meaty pork ribs
6 garlic cloves
10cm piece of fresh ginger
6 spring onions
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
2 teaspoons chinese five-spice powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
650ml chicken stock
250ml rice wine or dry sherry
200ml soy sauce
150g demerara sugar
4 tablespoons sesame oil
2 oranges, grated zest

Cabbage slaw:

Quantity Ingredient
800g red cabbage
1 red onion
3 red chillies
150ml white wine vinegar
50g caster sugar
100ml coconut milk
4 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves
4 tablespoons fresh mint leaves
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 140°C. Place the ribs in a large roasting tin. Finely chop the garlic and ginger and roughly chop the spring onions. Heat a frying pan until hot, add the vegetable oil and heat until smoking, then add the garlic, ginger and spring onions and stir-fry quickly for 30 seconds. Add the spices and fry for another few seconds, then add the stock, rice wine or sherry, soy sauce and sugar and bring to a simmer. Cook for a couple of minutes until the sugar has dissolved, then add the sesame oil and orange zest and stir to combine. Pour the mixture straight over the ribs and toss so that everything is coated in the sauce. Cover with foil and cook in the oven for 2¼ hours.
  2. Meanwhile, deseed the chillies, then slice the red cabbage, onion and chillies as thinly as you can. Heat the vinegar, sugar and coconut milk in a pan until simmering. Once the sugar has melted, put the red cabbage mixture in a bowl and pour the hot vinegar mixture over the top, stirring well. Leave to steep for at least 15 minutes, then add the rest of the slaw ingredients, season with salt and pepper, and mix well.
  3. Remove the foil and turn the ribs over in the sauce until they are well glazed, then return to the oven, uncovered, for another 45 minutes, until just sticky – you might want to turn them again during this time. Remove the ribs from the oven and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving. Turn them once more in the glaze before serving. Pile them onto a serving platter with a bowl of the cabbage alongside, and dig in.
James Martin
Saturday Kitchen
slow cooking
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