Make 4 servings in a daily Vietnamese multiple courses meal.
1 lb pork spare ribs, cut into 1or 2-in lengths
3 Tbs sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 tsp ground black pepper
1/2 tsp salt
1 Tbs fish sauce and extra for taste
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 shallot or 1/4 small yellow onion, finely chopped
1 green onion, thinly sliced
Cooked rice, sliced cucumber or tomato, lettuce, pickled or steamed veggie, etc. for serving
Marinate pork ribs with 1 Tbs sugar, 1 Tbs fish sauce, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp black ground pepper, garlic and shallot. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, add 2 Tbs sugar and 1 Tbs water. Heating over medium high heat until sugar start smelling and turning dark amber color. Add pork ribs, stir until coated then add water. Bring it to a boil, then simmer over medium low heat .with the lid on. Stirring occasionally about 20 minutes, check to see if the meat is soft and easy to pull from the bone. Taste and adjust seasoning to your liking. It is ready to eat with cooked rice now but the flavor will be better tomorrow. Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with green onion and a pinch of ground black pepper (optional). If you do not like the taste of raw green onion, stir in green onion into hot pork.
I use the squid brand fish sauce for this recipe.
I usually buy the large rack of pork spare ribs, trim of excess loose fat, and chop it inlcuding the cartilage filled parts by myself but you need a cleaver to chop pork rib or have the butcher chop it for you. Do not use your good knife. After chopping, I mix all part of pork ribs, and freeze for later use.
This one will yield a lot of sauce for veggie dipping pour onto rice. If you want thick and less sauce, when the pork is soft, uncover and cook on the high heat until the sauce reduced or you can add less water at the beginning about 2 Tbs of water but keep an eye close during cooking to prevent charring at the bottom.