COCA-COLA-GLAZED BABY BACK RIBS

Serves 4 (about 20 pieces).

Note: Virginia Willis notes that "Scotch bonnet peppers are intensely hot, but their fire is tempered by the sweetness of the sugar and Coke." She suggests that "to tone down the heat, substitute jalapeños instead." I used Scotch bonnets and chopped them with their seeds, which produced a sauce with plenty of heat. A second time I removed the seeds, then chopped the peppers; this yielded a sauce that was not as hot.

• 1 c. Coca-Cola Classic

• 1/4 c. apple cider vinegar

• 1 1/2 c. firmly packed light brown sugar

• 2 Scotch bonnet chiles (see Note)

• 2 racks baby back ribs (3 lb. total)

• Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper

Directions

To make the glaze, in a small saucepan, bring the Coca-Cola, vinegar, brown sugar and chiles to a boil over high heat; reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer until syrupy, about 10 minutes or longer. Decrease the heat to low and keep the sauce warm while the ribs cook.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Liberally season both sides of the ribs with salt and pepper.

Place the ribs on a broiler pan and bake for 30 minutes, glazing the ribs occasionally with the Coca-Cola mixture. Turn the ribs over and continue to cook for an additional 30 minutes or longer, glazing occasionally, until the ribs are tender and the meat is starting to pull away from the bone. (When baking the ribs in my oven, the baby backs needed an extra 25 to 30 minutes until tender.)

When the ribs are cooked through, set the oven to broil. Liberally spoon half of the remaining glaze over the ribs and broil until glazed a deep mahogany brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Turn over; repeat with the remaining glaze, an additional 5 to 7 minutes. Serve immediately with lots of napkins.

Nutrition information per 4 servings, based on 1/2 glaze used throughout:

Calories 830 Fat 50 g Sodium 170 mg

Carbohydrates 45 g Saturated fat 18 g Calcium 116 mg

Protein 48 g Cholesterol 200 mg Dietary fiber 0 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 3 other carb, 7 high-fat meat.