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~Beer-Batter-Dipped Deep-Fried Babyback Spareribs~

IMG_4291Yes, you read it right -- these ribs are beer-batter-dipped and deep-fried.  One could say strange things happen to people during a lengthy arctic-esque freeze stirred into a pandemic --  to name a few, we binge-watch way too much TV, eat way too many carbohydrates, and, push like to way too many Facebook memes.  BUT, as Cuckoo-for-Cocoa-Puffs as it might seem to many, batter-dipping and deep-frying spareribs isn't one of them -- the Chinese have been deep-frying ribs for centuries, and they're a popular item on many Chinese-American restaurant menus.

That said, it should come as no surprise that South of the Mason-Dixon Line, on occasion, folks deep-fry spareribs too -- after all, by definition, the phrase "Southern-fried" is not limited to chicken. So, once you pause to think about it for a moment or two, it will come as no shock that, done in the manner of batter-dipped Southern-fried chicken or catfish, spareribs are no different -- they're delicious.  Suck-it-up, close the lid on that grill, get out the deep-fryer and live dangerously.

Crispy outside, perfectly-cooked & full-flavored juicy-tender inside -- they're simply irresistible...

IMG_4276 2... but, they're filling, so, they're a great way to stretch one rack of ribs to feed a family of four or serve as hors d'oeuvres.


1 or 2  full-racks babyback pork spareribs

1 or 2  12-ounce bottles beer, your favorite kind (one bottle of beer per rack of ribs)

4 1/2 or 9  cups pancake mix, your favorite kind (4 1/2 cups total for 1 rack of ribs, 9 cups total for 2 racks of ribs) (Note:  I use pancake mix in place of self-rising flour or flour mixed with baking powder and salt.  It works great, tastes fantastic, and, it's always on-hand in my pantry.)

corn or peanut oil for deep-frying

freshly-ground sea salt, for seasoning ribs as they emerge from the deep-fryer

IMG_2760 IMG_2760 IMG_2760 IMG_2760~Step 1.  To prep one or two full racks babyback pork spareribs, pat them dry in some paper towels, and, use a paring knife to remove the silverskin from the underside of each rack.  If you don't know how to do this, read my post ~ How to: Remove the Silverskin from Spareribs ~. Using a large chef's knife, slice between the rib bones to section each rack into 12-14 pieces.

IMG_4251 IMG_4251 IMG_4251Step 2.  For the dry dredge, in one medium-sized bowl, place 2 or 4 cups of pancake cake mix. Set aside.  For the beer batter, in a second medium-sized bowl, whisk together 2 1/2 or 5 cups of pancake mix along with 1 or 2 bottles of beer. Set aside for about 3 minutes before starting the frying process. This will give the batter time to thicken a bit, to a drizzly consistency.  If at any point during the frying process (even at the outset) if the batter seems or gets too thick, whisk in a little more beer to maintain a VERY drizzly consistency. For more info about beer batter, read my post ~ My All-Purpose Beer Batter for Deep-Frying Anything ~. Place a wire rack in a baking pan that has been lined with paper towels.  Heat oil in fryer to 375° according to manufacturer's specifications.

IMG_4257 IMG_4257 IMG_4257~ Step 3.  To dry dredge and batter dip the ribs, working in batches of two or three ribs at a time (so as not to overcrowd the fryer basket), dredge each rib in the dry pancake mix to lightly-coat it on all sides. Next, drop each rib in the beer batter and swish it around a bit, until coated.  Lift each rib out of the batter and hold it over the bowl for a second or two, to allow the excess batter to drizzle back into the bowl.

IMG_4264 IMG_4264 IMG_4264 IMG_4264~Step 4.  To deep-fry the ribs, working in batches of two or three ribs at a time (so as not to overcrowd the fryer basket, which should be submerged in the oil), gently lower each rib into the hot oil and into the fryer basket.  Close the lid on the deep-fryer and fry ribs for exactly 12 minutes per batch.  Open fryer lid and slowly lift basket up and out of deep-fryer. Transfer the ris to a wire rack in a baking pan that has been lined with paper towels.  Tip:  To transfer the ribs, simply tilt the basket onto its side directly over the rack in the pan.  Using tongs is a mistake -- it's an easy way to damage the crust.  Once out of the fryer, immediately sprinkle ribs with freshly ground sea salt and repeat process until all batches are dipped and deep-fried. 

Serve w/Southern-style rice, mac & cheese, baked beans, corn, creamy coleslaw &/or cornbread -- & barbecue sauce:

IMG_4300Beer-Batter-Dipped Deep-Fried Babyback Spareribs:  Recipe yields 12-14 spareribs/4-6 servings per rack of ribs.

Special Equipment List:  paper towels; paring knife; cutting board; chef's knife; whisk; deep-fryer; wire cooling rack; large baking pan

6a0120a8551282970b02788040f2af200dCook's Note:  We all know there are several ways to cook spareribs, and, for those of us who are fair-weather grillers exclusively, there are ways to enjoy wonderful ribs in the warmth of our kitchens.  Here's my recipe for ~ The Best Way to Make Slow-Cooker Babyback Spareribs ~.

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2022)


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