in the thick of winter it only makes logical and natural sense for one to pull their slow-cooker out. and with the big football game this past sunday, i thought it only appropriate that i make some ribs (or one really big rib). country style ribs are different from others (let's say spare ribs) because they usually don't contain any bones and are cooked more like pork chops (why they are called ribs is a mystery). while i had some success in the summer with these oven-cooked ribs, i wanted something cooking that it made me possible for me to leave the house (leaving an oven unattended does not put me at ease, shall we say). so the slow cooker it was! i used this recipe for sweet-and-sour country ribs and it was the easiest thing i have ever made, probably in my life.
in addition to the below ingredients, you'll also need apple cider vinegar. and yes, while the recipe calls for cayenne pepper i put in smoked paprika instead. i'll note that cayenne pepper and smoked paprika aren't alike at all, but i didn't have any cayenne pepper and anything smoked seems like a good thing to throw into a bbq recipe. if you do substitute smoked paprika and still want a little kick from some spice, i suggest sprinkling in some red pepper flakes.
it took, all in, about ten minutes (even less) to get it all in the crockpot. throw in each ingredient, whisk it together, then put in your ribs and toss to coat. since i did this early in the morning i let it cook on low for ten hours - like many people i think cooking fatty meat on low for a long time leads to something just a little more delicious.
and after ten hours - voile! a tasty dinner (and enough for leftovers). we served it with the sauce that was left in the crockpot, and i recommended doing that or serving with your favorite bbq sauce for more flavor.
some slow cooker recipes take more effort than others - as appealing as it may seem to come home to a warm dinner, waking up twenty minutes early to get it in the slow cooker always outweigh the benefits (for me at least). this recipe definitely doesn't fall into that category - it's the easiest thing in the world to throw together (and takes hardly any time), so it would be a perfect meal to make during the week, not just for the big game.