Grill Juicy Pork Spareribs and Steam Garlic on a Charcoal Grill

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Grilled spareribs

Meat is one of the most representative foods when it comes to reenergizing the body.

Food coordinator and outdoor cook Nahoko Minakuchi recommends barbecued spareribs. Sink your teeth into charcoal grilled meat on the bone.

“Meat is one of the most enjoyable outdoor foods. Barbecuing meat on the bone is a great way to get people excited,” Minakuchi said. “The far-infrared rays from the charcoal fire keep the meat moist and give it a nice aroma.”

Spareribs or pork belly on the bone, are short and cut into 140-150 gram section, so they are easy to handle and satisfying to eat. Before cooking, it is recommended to cut a slit on both sides of the ribs so that the meat can be easily detached from the bone when eating.

The pieces are soaked in a sweet and spicy homemade sauce. The sauce should be flavored with miso soybean paste. This adds thickness, richness and depth to the flavor.

If the dish is to be eaten by children, you do not need to use garlic or chili peppers in the sauce.

Place the ribs in a zip lock bag with the sauce and refrigerate overnight to allow the flavors to infuse. Any leftover sauce can be used for other meat dishes.

Place the meat on a barbecue grill and cook while brushing with the sauce. The meat will burn easily, so be careful not to overcook it.

“Keep the coals away from the grill and keep the heat on low. Cook the meat slowly until it is cooked through, then turn the heat up to high to get a nice, charred look,” Minakuchi said.

The sauce and fat from the meat will drip and pop out. The savory aroma of the meat will spread and stimulate the appetite. When chewing a sparerib, the juices of the grilled meat will spread the flavor of the miso around your mouth.

The meat is tender and easily comes off the bone, and I could not stop eating the spareribs, one after another.

Grilled spareribs

Ingredients (Serves 4)

  • 1 kg spareribs
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup mirin (sweet cooking rice wine)
  • 2 tbsp miso soybean paste
  • 2 tbsp ground white sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp grated garlic
  • 1/2 tsp hot red pepper powder
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 2 tsp sesame oil


1. Prepare the sauce. Combine soy sauce, sugar, mirin and miso soybean paste in a saucepan over medium heat. When the sugar dissolves, remove from heat. Add the ground white sesame seeds, grated garlic, chili pepper and sesame oil and mix well.

2. Make a few shallow slits in the skin with a knife on the back side of the spareribs.

3. Turn the spareribs over and make some deep cuts in the meat on the other side in the same way.

4. Place the ribs, 150 cc of the prepared sauce and the honey in a zip lock bag and marinate overnight in the refrigerator.

5. Build a charcoal fire on a grill and heat it up. Remove the ribs from the bag, place on the grill and grill while brushing on the remaining sauce. Cook the ribs slowly, turning them every so often.

Roasting garlic in foil

The Yomiuri Shimbun
Roasted garlic in foil

Roast stamina-boosting garlic in foil on the same grill.

Cut off the top section the tip of a garlic bulb, leave the skin on and place on a piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle a little sesame oil and salt, then apply butter to the garlic bulb. Wrap in foil and roast on a low flame for about 20 minutes.

The garlic is slowly steamed, so the texture will become soft and gooey.