Slow Cooked Goat Ribs In BBQ Sauce by Chef Sarah Atieno, H&S Chef Of The Month
H&S Chef Of The Month
Chef Sarah Atieno
Interview With H&S Magazine
Who Is Sarah Atieno?
I am a stay at home twenty-six-year-old mother to one, an operations assistant, writer, and chef. There aren’t many words to describe me but a passionate foodie, who walks and speaks the language of food does it.
Type Of Cuisine?
I’d say this is difficult for me as I love a touch of everything, but If I was made to choose I’d say continental with a twist of African. I am all over the place when it comes to food, I love the amazingly different flavours, textures and traditional methods of preparing meals, so choosing a speciality for me, is one difficult task.
What Inspired You To Become A Chef?
Growing up as a first child, I was tasked with the responsibility of helping my mother around, more especially in the kitchen. When she made chapatis, I’d be adding oil to the pan and flipping them to the other side; you should have seen the joy on my face when everyone appreciated the crispiness and taste; the satisfaction that came from what cooked was unexplainable.
Years later, I’d cook chapatis and sell them to my lectures at Kenyatta University, more especially to one Dr. Alice Ondigi, who would pay me handsomely to make them in bulk. The fact that I loved great food but could not sometimes afford it during my days in campus, pushed me into trying to replicate the same at home, and that’s how I found myself with the title chef.
What Is The Biggest Challenge You Have Faced In The Culinary Industry?
My biggest challenge so far has been getting my hands on quality ingredients. One quality ingredient in a meal can be a big game changer, some are not locally available either. I’ve had to import pure vanilla pods to make my own vanilla extract, getting quality raw ingredients has proven to be a challenge for me. I try to shop for spices and any ingredient I may need back home when I travel to countries/places that have them in plenty.
What’s Your Biggest Achievement In The Culinary Industry?
My biggest achievement in the culinary industry, is when I went solo in the beginning of this year to become a private chef. I currently run my business Sa’Gene for Foods, a cloud kitchen offering state-of-the-art meals and desserts that cover a wide range of clientele’s needs. The versatility of running my business has helped me achieve a long term dream of mine, which is to be there for my daughter when she wakes up, leaves and comes back from school. I am now able to spend some quality time with her, unlike before when I’d leave way too early and come home late when she was already asleep. It gives me immense joy and pride watching my six-year-old daughter take interest in what I do, she’s become my little marketer
especially at her school, where I now bake pastries for students’ birthdays and school functions held.
When It comes To Cooking, What Is More Important To You, The Technique, The Ingredients Or The Creativity?
A great meal is a combination of the three, some ingredients can not be compromised if a desired flavour and texture is to be acquired, this brings in the technique factor then creativity. So for me, it is the perfect balance of all three to achieve the target results.
Recipe Of The Week: Slow Cooked Goat Ribs In BBQ Sauce
The Goat Ribs
• ½ cup of olive oil
• 8 cloves of garlic
• 1 large ginger root
• 2 tbsp of thyme
• 1 tsp smoked paprika powder
• ½ tsp sea salt
• ¼ tsp black pepper
• 2 tbsp smoked barbecue sauce
• 800g of goat ribs
• 1 large onion, finely chopped
• ½ cup of grape juice + 2 tbsp of vinegar (mixed)
• 1 tsp fresh thyme
• 1 tsp fresh chives
• 1½ cup beef stock
• Salt & pepper to taste
• 2 tbsp cold butter (unsalted)
Preparation: The Goat Ribs
Crush garlic and ginger root together and add to a bowl, then pour in the olive oil and add the smoked paprika, sea salt, black pepper, barbecue sauce, and thyme. Mix the marinade until fully incorporated and take out 5 tbsp of this and add to another bowl, to use later. Thoroughly wash the goat ribs and pat dry with a napkin, then rub the marinade on to the ribs and let it rest for at least one hour in a cool place. Pre-heat your oven to 150 °C. Meanwhile, on medium-heat, place a heavy-duty non-stick pan until it’s smoking hot. Carefully place the goat ribs on the pan and let brown on both sides, repeat the process with the rest of the ribs. In a baking pan with foil paper, place the browned ribs, and brush in the remaining marinade that was set aside. Add in some fresh thyme (optional), & wrap the foil around to cover the ribs, then bake this for 45 to 60 minutes depending on your oven, and how you like your meat to be done. Remove meat from foil, when ready to serve, using tongs.
Preparation: The Sauce
Place the pan used for browning ribs over medium heat, and add onions to it & cook until it’s translucent for about 3 minutes. Add the grape juice mix, thyme, chives and bring to boil and let it reduce to half. Next add the beef stock, and boil over low heat, until mixture is reduced to almost a cup. Season with salt and pepper, add in cold butter, stir until melted and fully incorporated. Adjust the seasoning to your liking.
To plate, cut the ribs into desired portions & serve with a side of sautéed vegetables, sauce and starch of choice, such as fried plantains.