Dora Siah’s love for wholesome food, cooking and wellbeing lead her to discovering and embarking on the Autoimmune Protocol (AIP) to manage her autoimmune condition. She created Provincial Paleo, a website focusing on AIP and Paleo recipes to share with everyone and enjoys experimenting in the kitchen to create delicious dishes with international flavors for her husband and 2 young sons. Dora is originally from Singapore and currently lives in Quebec City, Canada. Connect with her through Facebook or Instagram.
With a sticky and slightly bittersweet coffee sauce, these Singapore Coffee Pork Ribs are a crowd pleaser! This is a popular dish served at casual Chinese dining establishments in Singapore, using a completely different cooking technique from the American style barbeque ribs with a coffee dry rub. By using the culinary method of twice frying, the result is extra crispy pork ribs glazed with an aromatic coffee-based sauce which pairs remarkably well with the marinated meat.
These ribs are a great game day, potluck or party food. Not keen on spare ribs? Try substituting with bite-sized boneless chicken thighs, pork belly, or chicken wings/ drumlets.
You can serve these ribs as an entree with western salads (e.g. slaws) or with stir-fried vegetables for an Asian touch.
The dish can be easily made ahead of time – cook the pork ribs and prepare the sauce beforehand. When ready to serve, heat the sauce up and combine with the cooked pork ribs.
- Prep time: 2 hours 10 minutes
- Cook time: 30 minutes
- Servings: 4
- 2 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 tbsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp avocado oil
- 1/2 tbsp vanilla extract
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 tsp honey, maple syrup, or 1 pitted date
- 2 lb pork spare ribs, chopped into individual ribs and halved, if preferred
- 3/4 cup tapioca starch
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- Avocado oil for deep frying (you could also use duck fat, lard, or tallow)
Ingredients (Coffee Sauce)
- 1 tbsp instant coffee granules (use instant chicory root for an AIP option)
- 1 pitted date
- 1/2 tbsp granulated garlic
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, or lemon juice
- 1 tbsp blackstrap molasses
- 1/2 tbsp coconut aminos
- 1 tbsp coconut oil
- 1/2 tbsp maple syrup or honey
- A splash or two of water (if necessary)
- 1 tbsp roughly chopped coriander leaves
- Combine coconut aminos, fish sauce, avocado oil, vanilla extract, baking soda, and sweetener together in a large freezer-proof bag. If using a pitted date, press to mash the date and mix well with the rest of the marinade ingredients.
- Add the pork ribs, mixing with the marinade, then seal the bag and leave it to marinate for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator.
- Remove the marinated ribs from the refrigerator and add the tapioca starch and sea salt. Seal the bag and shake to mix well. The ribs will become coated with a sticky batter.
- Heat about 2 inches fat/ avocado oil in a heavy-bottomed pan with deep sides until it reaches around 300°F. Alternatively, use a deep fryer.
- Working in batches, deep fry the coated pork ribs for about 7 minutes, flipping them once, until they turn light brown all over and almost cooked through. Remove and drain over kitchen paper towels.
- Increase the heat slightly (the oil should be around 360°F) and return the browned ribs to the pan/ deep fryer and fry for a second time for about 2 minutes, or until the ribs turn golden brown and the juices run clear. Cut the thickest and meatiest rib to check if it is cooked through, if necessary. Remove and drain over kitchen paper towels.
- Mix all the ingredients for the coffee sauce in a large saucepan over medium-low heat until thickened. Add the cooked pork ribs and toss to coat evenly. Add a splash or two of water if necessary. Sprinkle with chopped coriander to garnish before serving, if preferred.