Glazed Five-Spice Spareribs



  • 1 1/2 pounds meaty spareribs

Simmer Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon dry sherry
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon five-spice powder
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water

Glazing Sauce

  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons dry sherry
  • 3 tablespoons oil
  • 1 medium clove garlic, crushed and peeled
  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar


  1. Simmer Sauce: Add the boiling water and bring the simmer sauce to a boil. Adjust heat to medium low to maintain a strong simmer, then cover and simmer for 30 minutes, turning meat now and then.
  2. Drain the Simmer Sauce into a bowl and set the ribs aside. (Can do this step in advance and refrigerate, bringing to room temperature before continuing).
  3. Glazing Sauce: Measure out 1/4 cup of Simmer Sauce and combine it with dark soy sauce and dry sherry. Set it within reach for making the glazing sauce.
  4. Spareribs: Heat a wok or large heavy skillet over high heat until hot; add the oil, swirl, and heat for 10 seconds. Press and turn the garlic in the oil with the back of a spatula. Stir in the sugar until it is dissolved. Then add the simmer sauce a little at a time (it will splatter - stand back) and stir until it puffs into thick caramel bubbles. Then pour in the ribs and tumble them vigorously until the sauce coats all of them, with no sauce left in the pan. Scoop the ribs onto a serving platter and garnish with parsley.

Serves 3 to 4 as a single appetizer; more with an assortment.

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