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~Oscar Bites: BBQ'D Porkrib Tartlets for the Starlets~

IMG_5962Oscar night in our house is subdued.  Monday morning comes early for Joe and I, so we accept no invitations to parties and never throw one.  We enjoy a few cocktails, I make a snack or two, and we give watching the show our best effort.  Joe usually walks away from the TV as soon as the food runs out, and, I don't blame him.  In all honesty, as much as I love to watch movies, I find the Oscar ceremonies atrocious.  I've lost count as to how many times I've vowed not to watch it. Alas, I'm not good at playing mind games with me, so, every year, I watch it and whine about it!

IMG_5940Of the 11 nominees I saw:  Nebraska was my favorite movie.

August:  Osage County, followed by Dallas Buyers Club, get #2 and #3. I understand why 12 Years a Slave won Best Picture (and have no ax to grind with that).  Blue Jasmine was good, but, it reminded me of an irritating day on Facebook, in a modern-day Mildred Pierce sort of way (but with a great musical soundtrack).  I found Gravity gravely disappointing (Houston, we have a problem, this ain't no Apollo 13.).  Everything in between was just running on fumes.  Because of my own top picks, I went with a down-home Midwestern-Texican menu for our snacks.  I always pick a theme, pretending the food will sway the way the Acadamy votes.  It never works. This year, due to circumstances beyond my control, I had a last minute, minor, change of plan:

IMG_5691I made my recipe for ~ Broiled and Baked:  K.C. Country-Style Ribs ~ on Friday for dinner.  I purposely made a double batch so I'd have leftover ribs on hand.  Joe's man-radar detected them in the refrigerator.  "Honey, what are your plans for those ribs?"  I kind of knew what he wanted.  After a short discussion, my snacks turned into his sandwiches.  That's ok.  They were scrumptious and I kept (hid) enough of rib meat to make the appetizers to snack on tonight!

IMG_7624These sandwiches are so good that I sometimes make the ribs just to make them.  The pulled/shredded meat from the rib bones goes on rolls with cheddar.  I wrap them in foil and bake them.  Joe drizzles the warm sauce (my recipe for ~ Kansas City BBQ Sauce:  Sweet, Spicy & Smokey ~) on afterward. Coleslaw and cold beer is all you need to complete the feast. 

Just click on the Related Article links below to get the recipes!

It's all about compromise.  If I've got to watch the Superbowl with him, he's got to watch the Oscars with me.  If I've got to massage my menu a bit to accomplish that, all is fair in love and war and I win:  I'm making my appetizers today (and I'm still whining about the Oscars too)!

These Texican appetizer treats are perfect fare for blue jean or black tie parties!

IMG_5653 IMG_5227Cook six country-style spareribs according to my recipe. When cool enough to handle, use a fork to pull meat from the bones and shred into small, bite-sized pieces. Discard bones and any large pieces of fat as you work.  Six ribs is going to yield enough to make 6 dozen of these appetizers, so, throw a big party, or, do what I did:  make four sandwiches and save the rest!

IMG_5856Ready, set, assemble!

IMG_5744For 24 mini-tarts (tartlets):

1  box Pillsbury Pie Crusts/2, 9" pie crusts

Wondra Quick-Mixing Flour

1/2  cup store-bought finely-shredded yellow cheddar cheese

1  cup shredded porkrib meat (as per my recipe), at room temp

1  cup Kansas City BBQ sauce (as per my recipe), at room temp 

IMG_5761 IMG_5749~ Step 1. Lightly sprinkle the bottom of 1-2 mini-muffin tins (enough for 24 tartlets) with Wondra flour.

IMG_5754Using a small rolling pin, roll each crust to a 10" diameter.

Using a 3" cookie cutter, cut each 10" crust into 12 discs.

IMG_5783 IMG_5772~ Step 2. Place one disc in each muffin cup. Using your fingertips, open each one up.  

IMG_5787Use your fingertips to pat and press discs into cups, but if you have a "tart tamper" this task will go very quickly.

IMG_5793 IMG_5807 IMG_5818~ Steps 3, 4 & 5. To each tartlet add:  1 teaspoon grated cheese, 1 1/2 teaspoons shredded meat and 2 teaspoons sauce.

IMG_5846 IMG_5831~ Step 6. Tip from Mel: Drizzle the sauce on slowly, to give it time to work its way down between all the nooks and crannies.  Place a pinch of cheddar cheese on the top of each tartlet.  I use a pinch, you can use a bit more if you like, but don't overdo it with the cheese.  Trust me.

IMG_5864 IMG_5851~ Step 7. Tip from Mel:  To make these in advance, form your tart shells and cover them with plastic wrap, and, have all other ingredients prepped.  Do not assemble until just prior to baking on center rack of preheated 350 degree oven 12 -14 minutes.

IMG_5888Step 8.  Remove from oven.  

IMG_5860Using a thin spatula or a small fork (I prefer a small cocktail-type fork), carefully and gently lift (from the side not the center) each one and transfer to a cooling rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

IMG_5916Note:  Serve these garnished with a dollop of Midwestern-style pepper slaw!

IMG_5989Grab an ice cold beer, take a bite & enjoy a movie night:

IMG_6010Oscar Bites:  BBQ'D Porkrib Tartlets for the Starlets:  Recipe yields 2 dozen appetizers.

Special Equipment List:  fork; 1-2 miniature muffin pans, enough for 24 miniature muffins; rolling pin; 3" round cookie cutter; tart tamper (optional); cooling rack

PICT3331Cook's Note:  For another one of my favorite savory appetizers, my recipe for ~ Danish Blue, Swiss Emmentaler & Pine Nut Tartlets ~ can be found in Categories 1, 9, 11 or 18.  These have a custard mixture poured over the top and are like eating mini quiche!

"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2014)


PSUinBOSSton -- great to hear from you again! There is no doubt in my mind that you and yours are going to enjoy these -- Merry Christmas & Happy New Year to you all! ~ Mel.

These look great. In fact they will be served as an appetizer on Christmas eve by me.

Since I have taken over Christmas Eve for my family I have decided to update much of the menu. In the past I have kept things reasonably close to the previous version (ham and cheese calzone appetizers became ham and cheese croquettes, chicken parm became different duck dishes, all the seafood formats changed etc), but this one just looks like something new and easy to try! Thanks!

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