Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Making Use of our Wedding Gifts and a Recipe

MrMarried and I will have been married for six months this month, and it's downright sad to report how little of the wedding gifts we have been using on a regular basis. One of my bridal showers was last May- sheesh- almost 10 months ago now- and even though I was so excited to start using every gift right away, it didn't exactly happen.

I will admit I got a little scanner happy with the registry gun, but on most occasions, I came to my senses and went back into the registry manager and deleted the 4 sets of everyday flatware extra items that we wouldn't really use. Despite my efforts to only register for things I thought we needed, I still have wedding gifts that are in boxes, or have been completely forgotten about in the last six months.

This past weekend I decided I wanted to start making use of some of our wedding gifts! Don't get me wrong, if I had the opportunity, I would be game for eating dinner each night with our fine china, but something is telling me that MrMarried wouldn't exactly be game for hand washing the dishes every night... so our everyday dishwasher safe pattern it is! Anyway-- the gift that I brought out this past weekend was our lovely slow cooker.

I must admit-- I was a little scared of the thing at first. Call me a wimp if you must. Growing up, my parents didn't do a lot of cooking in a crock pot, so perhaps that is where my initial uneasiness came from... but I have friends who swear by their slow cookers, so I thought I would give it a shot.

Baby Back Ribs were on the menu and my husband (the constant carnivore) was pumped. The house smelled great all afternoon, and other than making the sauce, this recipe had very little labor involved. And the best part is-- the ribs turned out great!!

I thought I would share the recipe with you. So... here we go!

2 pounds baby back ribs
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup ketchup
1/2 cup chili sauce
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
Dash hot sauce

1.  Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

2. Cut ribs into sections of 2-3 ribs each. 

3. Generously season the ribs with salt and pepper. Place in a shallow baking pan (I used a glass Pyrex) and brown the ribs on middle oven rack for 15 minutes. Turn over, and brown another side for 15 minutes.

4. While the ribs are cooking mix together the ketchup, chili sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oregano, Worcestershire sauce, hot sauce, and salt and pepper in a medium bowl.

5. Place ribs in slow cooker. Pour sauce over ribs, and turn to coat.

6. Cover, and cook on Low 6 to 8 hours, or until ribs are tender. (6 hours was plenty for me. The time might depend on your slow cooker. Just poke the ribs with a fork to check on them after 6 hours and cook more if necessary.

This recipe definitely yields a slightly sweeter sauce. If you prefer something more tangy or spicy, I would recommend cutting out some of the ketchup and chili sauce and replacing with your favorite BBQ sauce. I wanted to make my sauce from scratch-- so I followed the recipe. Feel free to adjust to your preferences.

Have you broken out some of your weddings gifts recently? I'd love to hear about your experience!

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