Last Friday; 15th August, in Malta we celebrated the feast of Santa Maria or the assumption of our lady. This is the most beloved public holiday by the Maltese. It is celebrated in many villages around the island with processions, marching bands, food and colourful fireworks. This feast is of great significance because during World War II there was a great shortage of supplies in Malta. All merchant ships that tried reaching Malta were sunk by German and Italian bombers. The Maltese were losing hope and they suffered greatly at the time. Supplies were sent on 14 merchant ships and this plan was called Operation Pedestal. The most important ship was the SS Ohio being the only large tanker available. On the 13th August the MV Melbourne Star and the MV Port Chalmers entered the port followed by the Brisbane star the following day which had its bow torn off by a torpedo. However, the SS. OHIO was needed for Malta to be able to carry on. On the 15th August 1942 the severely damaged SS. Ohio arrived into the Grand Harbour saving the Maltese. The tanker sank as the last of the fuel was transported off. This event is seen by some as a miracle and the feast of Santa Maria became even more popular and loved. Here is a picture of the SS. Ohio being towed into the Grand Harbour. This year as part of the celebrations we saw the fireworks and had a BBQ at home. The fireworks were spectacular as usual. Here are some pictures I took of the fireworks. Since I was a kid these and the ground fireworks were the highlight of every feast for me.
Remember I mentioned a BBQ earlier? So for the BBQ I decided to make some pork ribs with BBQ sauce. I love anything covered in BBQ sauce! The first time I had BBQ sauce was when I went on holiday to Florida aged 10-11. My sister and I got addicted to it and ate a variety of meat cooked in BBQ sauce for the two weeks we stayed there and demanded more once back home. We used to buy BBQ sauce ready made at the supermarket but now this is no longer an option since all contain garlic and onions and quite possibly also glucose-fructose syrup. You really don’t realise how common these are in food products until you’re intolerant to them. Since I had no other choice I decided to try to make my own BBQ sauce and I was quite pleased with the result!
Ribs with BBQ sauce Ingredients:
- 1/2 rack of ribs (I cut mine up into smaller pieces)
- 1/2 small can of lager
- BBQ sauce*
- 1/2 onion (to infuse oil)
- 1 Tablespoon garlic infused olive oil
*For the BBQ sauce:
- 1 1/2 cup ketchup (find one without glucose-fructose syrup and also without onion and garlic)
- 1/4 cup water
- 3 tablespoons vinegar
- 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon chili paste**
- 1/4 teaspoon ginger paste**
- 1/4 teaspoon Chinese 5 spice
- 1 tablespoon soy sauce
- 1 tablespoon garlic infused olive oil
- 1/8 teaspoon pepper
- 2 tablespoons Jack Daniels whiskey
**You can find these in the ethnic section in the supermarket either in the Asian or Indian section Method:
- Prepare the BBQ sauce by mixing all the ingredients together except for the Jack Daniels whiskey.
- Heat 1 tablespoon garlic infused olive oil in a pot and add the onion. Remove the onion once browned. This is done to add onion flavour.
- Add the ribs and seal quickly. Once sealed add the lager and half of the BBQ sauce mixture. Mix everything together. Bring to a boil and leave to simmer on low heat for an hour or until the meat on the ribs is very tender.
- Add the whiskey to the remaining half of the BBQ sauce. Put in a pan and bring to a boil. Simmer until thickened and covers the back of a spoon.
- I cooked my ribs on a BBQ but you can also use an oven and cook under a grill.
- I removed the ribs from the lager-BBQ sauce marinade. With a brush I brushed the ribs with the BBQ sauce on both sides then cooked on the BBQ on both sides until they’re nice and brown. They will be done quite quickly since the ribs are already cooked.
Here’s a picture of the BBQ ribs.
At BBQs we always serve some appetizers to nibble on while setting up the fire and cooking. These usually include dips, cheese and olives. These are often accompanied by wheat crackers. I had mine with some salted corn nachos and crunchy carrot chips instead. I recently discovered bags of crunchy carrot chips at the supermarket and they’re absolutely gorgeous. They come in two flavours paprika or cinnamon and cardamom. The crunchy paprika chips were great with some cheddar cheese. These crunchy carrot chips are also ideal to snack on. I had my cinnamon and cardamom carrot chips dipped in some almond butter as a snack yesterday. Perfection! These have quickly become a favourite. One bag is made from 300g of carrot. Carrots are low FODMAP however Monash only gives information that they are low FODMAP up to 61g and should be tolerated by most. I’ve had no issues with these carrot chips but I’m giving you a heads up just in case since it contains huge amounts of carrot. These are the chips.. If you liked this post and would like to see more click follow to receive an e-mail once a new post is up.