Last night, we got together with a group of friends and participated in our first Iron Chef competition! Prior to the evening, we all suggested secret ingredients and they were tossed into a hat. Then the youngest member of the group (i.e. a 1-year old) picked the ingredient and assigned each couple a "course" to prepare.
The secret ingredient was.....
Scott and I were responsible for coming up with a main dish using apple as its star player. Our wheels were spinning all weekend. Finally, we decided to make ribs with some sort of apple glaze to drizzle over the top.
Before tossing the soon to be applely-tasting ribs in the oven, I used Twisted Belly All Purpose Rub to coat the ribs for extra flavor. I may be biased, but Twisted Belly is my favorite rub - the only one I ever use. :) Even Chip is a big fan of the product!
Next, after consulting my fellow chef, my ribs cooked at 300 degrees in a pan of apple cider for about two hours. Oh, I added a few apples on top of the ribs for kicks. After two hours of cooking, I scorched my fingers and flipped the ribs over to cook for another two hours.
While the ribs were cooking, I prepared the an apple glaze to add an extra apple-punch to the ribs.
Apple Glaze adapted from Food & Wine Magazine
- 2 cups apple cider
- 1/2 C Apple Jelly
- 1/2 C Maple Syrup
- 1/4 C Spicy Brown Mustard
- 1/2 t All Spice
- Pinch of Ginger
- 1 T Corn Starch
- Bring the apple cider to a boil and let it reduce by half. Add the jelly and syrup to the reduced cider. Next, add in the mustard and spices. Add in cornstarch to thicken the glaze.
Once the glaze was ready, Scott coated the ribs and stuck them back in the oven for a few more minutes. After a while, we turned on the broiler as well.
To top off the ribs, we diced one apple and sprinkled the apple bits over the ribs as a garnish with the glaze.
I don't mean to brag - okay, I will brag - but the ribs were amazing.
We each gave scores for the other dishes in the competition and rated them on Taste, Plating, and Originality.
The results were tallied... calculated.... recounted.... analyzed... and
WE WON! Not only did we win bragging rights, but we get to take home a pretty stellar traveling trophy with a fork on top!
Now, it's time to spruce up the trophy and start planning our next Iron Chef dish!