Sauceless-in-Seattle Ribs

Serves 4

1 slab pork spareribs (about 4 pounds)

Blackberry sauce (see recipe)

3/4 cup blackberries

Mint sprigs (optional)

1. Rinse ribs and pat dry. Trim and discard excess fat. Remove the membrane from underside: Slide a screwdriver along each bone and under one end of membrane to loosen, then grab membrane with a paper towel and pull off.

2. Heat grill to medium-low (300 to 350 degrees), leaving an area clear for indirect heat. Set a drip pan in cleared area. Lay ribs on grill over drip pan, then cook until meat starts to pull away from edges of bones, about 90 minutes.

3. Baste 1 side of ribs with half the sauce. Set ribs sauce side down on grill and cook until sauce browns and forms a thick, sticky glaze, about 15 minutes. Baste top of ribs with remaining sauce, turn over and cook until sauce browns and forms glaze, 15 minutes more. Serve garnished with blackberries and mint.

Blackberry Sauce

1 1/4 cups blackberries

1/4 cup each ketchup, honey, firmly packed brown sugar and minced fresh ginger

1 teaspoon pepper

1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)

1 to 2 teaspoons hot sauce, to taste

In a food processor or blender, puree everything except the hot sauce. Add hot sauce to taste. Pour into a 1-quart glass measure. Cover loosely with microwave-safe plastic wrap, leaving vents for steam. Microwave on high, stirring occasionally, until berry mixture has reduced to 1 1/3 cups, about 8 minutes.

-- Sunset's "Cook Taste Savor" (Oxmoor House, $26, 288 pages)