Tandoori Ribs & Garlicky Mashed Potatoes

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Did you say soft tender fall off the bone baby back ribs? Count me in! This next recipe is somewhat a different spin on traditional BBQ ribs. I wanted to do something different so I thought tandoori would be great for this. Our family loves Indian food and spices so I decided to give it a try. I figured that if tandoori can be used on chicken, why not ribs? I’m super happy with the way this dish turned out. If you enjoy warm smoky flavors, then you’ll enjoy these ribs. Tandoori is very distinct in flavor and color. The reddish hue is due to the unique blend of spices. While traditionally cooked in a clay oven, we’ll be cooking our ribs in a sealed foil pack in the oven. This method will lock in the juices and flavor. 

I made garlic mashed potatoes with this dish as well. I think the garlic mashed potatoes is subtle in comparison, and balances out the strong tandoori flavor. Of course, I made a side of green beans just to keep a little tradition to this otherwise non-traditional BBQ.  You can add any side you want. I hope you enjoy this recipe. Let’s eat.

Here is the recipe:

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour

Servings: 6  

Note: I used a tandoori spice blend for this recipe, but if you cannot find it in your local grocery store, add equal parts of 1 tsp of smoked paprika, cumin, cardamom, turmeric, chili powder, star anise, and fennel seed for the full tandoori flavor.

Ingredients:

  • 6 ½ to 7 Lb baby back ribs, back membrane off 
  • 2 Tbsp tandoori spice blend
  • 1 tsp of ground ginger
  • 1 tsp of onion powder
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of ground black pepper, plus more for mashed potatoes
  • 1 tsp of ground nutmeg
  • 1 tsp of ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp of Kosher salt, plus more for mashed potatoes
  • 1 Tbsp of olive oil
  • 1 tsp of ground mustard
  • 4 large russet potatoes, washed, peeled and diced
  • ¼ cup of whole milk, room temperature (I used lactose free Lactaid brand)
  • ½ Tbsp garlic powder, for mashed potatoes
  • 2 Tbsp vegan butter, regular butter is fine

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325° F.
  2. Use a baking sheet and line it with aluminium foil long enough to fold over the rib rack.
  3. Place the ribs on the aluminium foil bone side side up. For easy removal of the membrane, use a sharp knife and carefully score right through the center of the membrane. Peel one side first, then the other. 
  4. Now brush on the olive oil over both sides of the rack. 
  5. Then add all the spices to both sides making sure you coat the meat evenly. Concentrate on adding most of the spices on the meatier side of the ribs for maximum flavor. 
  6. Fold the aluminium foil over then crimp the three edges to create an envelope. Seal tightly. 
  7. Cook the ribs for 1½ to 2 hours according to and as directed by the package. Do not open the oven, or uncover the foil pack until the end. 
  8. Upon completed cooking time, uncover the ribs. Set the oven to broil on high heat for a few minutes to finish them off. Keep a close eye on them so they don’t burn or dry out. 
  9. Remove the baking sheet from the oven. Let the ribs rest for 5 minutes, then open the foil pack. Carefully cut the ribs, serve with mashed potatoes and side. Enjoy!

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Directions for the garlicky mashed potatoes:

  1. Set a large pot of salted water over high heat. 
  2. Once it starts to boil, add the diced potatoes.
  3. Cook uncovered until the potatoes are tender, or about about 15 minutes.
  4. Insert the tip of a knife to check for doneness. If the knife pierces through, they are done. 
  5. Turn the heat off, remove the pot from the heat, and carefully scoop about ¼ cup of hot starchy water. Set it aside.
  6. Drain the potatoes from the rest of the water and place them back into the hot pot. 
  7. Set pot over low heat. Add the milk, water, garlic powder, salt and pepper.
  8. Stir to combine the ingredients while gently mashing the potatoes together. 
  9. Add the butter and give it all one last stir before serving. Enjoy!

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