Pork rib is one of the traditional meals at Christmas time in Norway. It is often eaten by Norwegians on Christmas day, but also throughout the dark season too. Norwegian rib is one of my favourite meals – it’s so good that I make it even when I’m dining by myself.
I followed the exact same recipe as on the Christmas Rib post, just with a few differences to serve one:
• Usually portion sizes sold at the shops are big enough for a family of four but sometimes I only need enough just for one. So, I buy the family size and cut it up into one-size portions at home – I use one hand as a portion measurement.
• I used a cut that was boneless as I wasn’t sharing. The portion still has structure from the rind, but by the end of cooking, the meat can fall apart because it is so tender. Bone helps to keep cooked portions together.
• Because the portion size is smaller, there is no need to put the meat in the fridge over night sprinkled with salt to draw out extra moisture, therefore saving time. Being so small, the portion is mostly edge, which makes it crisp easier.
I still used the balled aluminum foil underneath the meat to raise it out of the ‘steam bath’. This one was in the oven for 40 minutes at 230°C with the aluminum cover. At the end, the meat seemed already cooked but I thought I’d trust the process and continue onto the next cooking stage – to crisp.
I turned the oven down to 200°C and cooked for another 45 minutes. (It seems odd to turn down the heat in order to crisp, doesn’t it?)
The crackling turned out perfect. Norwegian-style crackling is a little different to British/Australian. Instead of having a glassy quality, it is dryer and crusty.
The bath full of juices can be used for a gravy base.
Traditionally, Norwegian rib is cut about an inch thick. The meat here was so tender that the roast was like succulent pulled pork. It was the cuts that kept the portions together. I think it is the reason why rib with bone is the normal choice, so the meat doesn’t fall apart.
But all-in-all, I highly recommend this Norwegian method of Christmas rib, even for one!