Sunil Ghai’s pork spare ribs: The best of Irish and Indian flavours

Kitchen Cabinet: The Pickle, Tiffin and Street chef-patron shares a favourite recipe

Ireland offers an incredible bounty of produce and I love mixing Irish and Indian flavours. For this recipe, I am using Andarl Farm free-range pork as the texture of the meat lends itself very well to marinates. The farm in Glenamaddy, Co Galway, is owned and run by husband and wife Dave and Diana Milestone, who make sure the pigs grow in a natural environment.

Spices are fundamental in Indian cuisine, and it is important to buy good quality spices. Always buy spices whole and keep them in airtight jars. Spices should be kept away from the heat. Traditionally, we grind spices as we need them, using a coffee grinder.

We make our own mango chutney, but you can buy it ready-made. There are a number of brands available, such as East End, Heera and Pataks.

Sunil Ghai is chef and proprietor at Pickle, Tiffin, Street restaurants in Dublin and Greystones.


Pork spare ribs with mango pickle

Serves 4

For the spare ribs
800g Andarl Farm pork spareribs
500g coconut milk powder
1 ltr water
1 tbsp salt
4/5 star anise
1 tsp fresh turmeric, grated
1 tbsp ginger and garlic paste
Cornflour for dusting the meat

For the mango sauce
1 fresh red chilli
1 tsp ginger, chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, chopped
Achari masala (pickling spice mix)
½ tsp fenugreek seeds
½ tsp fennel seeds
½ tsp brown mustard seeds
½ tsp cumin seeds
100g mango chutney
½ tsp red chili flakes

To serve
Dried fenugreek leaves
Chopped coriander
Dried coconut slices

For the pork
1 Mix the coconut milk powder with the water and add all the listed ingredients (star anise, ginger and garlic paste, turmeric, salt). Boil the whole rack of pork in this mixture on low heat for about 80/90 minutes until the rack is cooked nicely. This will get rid of the extra fat and makes the meat softer and more flavoursome. I prefer to cook the rack whole and then cut into individual ribs, as the meat tends to disintegrate off the bone if you cut before boiling. When the pork is boiled, remove from the liquid and place the rack in the refrigerator to chill. This will make it easier to cut the ribs.

To prepare the mango sauce
2 Heat oil in a heavy based pan, add the pickling spice mix followed by chopped ginger, garlic and fresh red chilli. Sauté gently for two to three minutes, add the sweet mango chutney and a spoonful of water to make it a syrupy sauce with a thick texture.

3 Remove the ribs from the fridge and cut into individual pieces. Dust the boiled ribs with cornflour, and shallow-fry till crisp. Toss the fried ribs into the sauce until well coated. Take off the flame, add dried fenugreek leaf, chopped coriander, dried coconut slices.

Kitchen Cabinet is a series of recipes for Food Month at The Irish Times from chefs who are members of Euro-Toques Ireland, in support of Ireland's food producers. #ChefsMeetProducers.