The other day, I was wondering what to do with leftover rib meat?
The only reason I was thinking about this at all was that, after many decades of making ribs for family and friends, I was confronted with this dilemma for the first time. Panic almost set in, but thankfully I stumbled across some old mushrooms in the fridge and inspiration took over…
This dish will work with any type (pork side, pork back that I always use, beef, etc.) or style of ribs – the only one that it may not be suited to is one with a heavy sweet sauce like maple; but with some adjustments I’m sure you can figure it out. I would be curious to hear from anyone who tries this, and what adjustments they made to make it work!
Leftover meat from ribs
- Strip all leftover meat from ribs-you don’t have to be fanatical since the bones are a very, very, very good addition to any type of meat stock. Dice fine on a cutting board.
- Wash and trim mushrooms then process or rough chop them. Put them in largest pan you have with olive oil and a bit of black pepper. If you are feeling energetic, crush a LOT of fresh garlic into this now, otherwise do as I did-pour a bunch of garlic powder in now. Yes, you have to hear me rant about garlic salt at this point-that horrible evil creation that is the spawn of Satan. In summary, if you have some bury it preferably on another continent, and replace it with garlic powder.
- Once water is releasing, add whatever fresh or dried herbs you like. My version had rosemary and basil (basil and mushroom is a union meant to be). Add a bit of chicken or mushroom or whatever stock you like but I wouldn’t suggest lamb or even beef stock since they may take over the dish. Add a pinch of salt – you can always adjust later so don’t add much.
- Let it cook down for a while and add more stock when you think it’s ready; maybe 15-20 minutes. It should be a bit soupy, so add in cornstarch (as readers know, just drop some into a glass of cold water, stir quickly, and pour into whatever you are thickening); stir sauce once; bring back to simmer for 5 minutes stirring once or twice; DONE.
- Put rib meat in a big bowl, and add as much mushroom sauce as it takes to make the mixed result very wet but not soupy. If you don’t have quite enough sauce, just top up with a bit of stock and a splash of lemon juice.
I like this as either a messy warm sandwich, or just straight up on a plate with a side of no-mayo potato salad.
This dish goes great with red cabbage slaw, or any other summer barbecue side dish you like that’s not sweet.