When the kids have friends over, this stack of sticky ribs and spuds is a cheap, crowd-pleasing, prepare-ahead option. Simply add a leafy salad with tomato, cucumber and pepper, and put out plenty of napkins.
3 racks pork spare ribs, or about 1.5kg/3lb 5oz single pork spare ribs
1 small onion, diced
1 tbsp olive oil
1 garlic clove, crushed
2 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tsp mild chilli powder
300ml/½pt tomato passata
2 tbsp tomato purée
150ml/¼pt cider, white or red wine vinegar
125g/4½oz dark muscovado sugar
FOR THE POTATOES
1.5kg/3lb 5oz new potatoes, skin on
2 tbsp olive oil
1-2 rosemary sprigs, finely chopped, or a pinch of mixed dried herbs
2 tbsp white or red wine vinegar
Heat oven to 150C/130C fan/gas 2. Put the ribs in a roasting tin in a single layer and just cover with water. Cover with foil and cook for 1½ hrs. Drain well. If you are not finishing these straight away, cover and chill until ready to cook.
Meanwhile, fry the onion in the oil in a pan until soft. Add the garlic, smoked paprika and chilli powder and fry for 1 min. Add the passata, purée, vinegar and sugar and bring everything to a simmer. Cook for 10 mins. If you are not using this sauce straight away, cool and chill.
Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/gas 7. Brush the ribs all over with the sauce and lay on a baking sheet. Mix the potatoes with the oil, rosemary and seasoning in a large roasting tin. Roast for 40 mins on a middle shelf, with the ribs on the shelf above. Turn the ribs and potatoes halfway, until both are nicely browned all over. Tip the potatoes into a large bowl sprinkle with the vinegar and serve hot, warm or cold. Slice the ribs to serve and put any extra sauce into bowls for dipping.