Monday, May 3, 2010

Cooking Locally: Spare Ribs and Ramps

What a weekend...

Chadd and I did the Run Amuck 5k up in Rockville...absolutely hilarious.  We also found out that Chadd is a superior trail runner than I am (though I think I'd probably win in longer distances) and that wading through lake mud makes your quads sore.  We did finish 43, which, in our opinion, is pretty damn good out of about 370 teams of two.  Our time was somewhere around 33 minutes.  While that would be embarrassing for a 4k, I think it's pretty good for a 5k with obstacles and mud pits.

Some gentleman walking around the race took our picture for us since I was brilliant and left my phone in the car, and with that, my camera.  So I'm hoping that he'll email us our picture so I can show you what happens when you run a 5k through trails, wade through lakes, and finish the race crawling in a pit of mud.  Seriously.

I spent Sunday mostly cleaning and cooking, which brings me to this month's/quarter's whatever's Cooking Locally!

For just over $16, I picked up a little more than 2 pounds of pork spare ribs from one of the pork vendors.  I grabbed asparagus from another farm (4.50) where I'd also grabbed Ramps ($5) the week before.  I picked up a handful of small yukon gold potatoes ($2.50) and I was set.

I called my dad to get his expertise on the ribs.  He suggested a dry rub, and normally I'd have just put one together, but then I remembered that we have packets of spice rubs I picked up from a little spice/tea shop in Florida (there's another one here in Alexandria, apparently).  I brushed the ribs with a little olive oil, then slathered the rub on pretty thick on both sides.

After that, I tossed them (racked) in the over at about 175 for the next two hours.  I made the mistake of thinking they were done at this point (they weren't) and went on much later in the evening to throw them into a 450 over (which surprisingly made them come out perfectly) for about 15 minutes while I was finishing up the potato and ramp au gratin (2 c. potatoes, bunch of chopped ramps, layered, 1 c. milk, bread crumbs on top, your choice cheese on top, bake covered for 20 min. in 450, uncovered another 15).

Dinner wound up looking like this:

And was it ever delicious.  Chadd gave it a 4.5 out of 5, mostly because he likes the potatoes done a different way, but we both agreed the ramps were pretty good and a nice touch to the dish.  I was also pretty happy with the caloric value (somewhere around 450 for me) since ribs require so much time to eat, I get full on them quickly and don't eat too much meat, everything else was pretty healthy, especially since I used 1% milk for the potatoes instead of cream, and no butter.

I also whipped up a frittata of leeks, potatoes, and spinach, which, since I fell asleep prior to my bed time last night, failed to cut for my lunch today.  But there will be a review.  That recipe came from the cookbook I hailed as awesome last week, so I have no doubt it's going to be awesome.

My bosses aren't in today, but that doesn't mean I'm at a loss for work.  I can't believe it's already noon and I'm going to lose most of my afternoon and productive working time to a conference call. 

I've got a lot of links saved up for tomorrow--get excited!

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