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Cook Southern-Style Ribs And Potato Salad This Fourth Of July

When it comes to American cuisine, first things that come to mind are the obvious ones: burgers, hot dogs, fried chicken, and yes, even pizza. But there’s a whole lot more to American food than typical fast food fare.

To celebrate the Fourth of July, we’re taking you down South with Chef Peter Ayson’s Southern-inflected versions of barbecue ribs and potato salad. Chef Pete Ayson happens to be an aficionado of Southern cooking, thanks to his many years living in the United States, and which he expresses at his American-style restaurants New Orleans and Clawdaddy’s.

So this Fourth of July, go Southern with these recipes inspired by the rich, soulful traditions of Southern cooking, but made easy and more accessible for Filipino home cooks.



Pork Spareribs

Serves 6

  • 1 1/2 kilos pork spareribs
  • 1 small bottle Coca-Cola?
  • 1 cup tomato ketchup?
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons light brown sugar?
  • Tabasco sauce, to taste
  • cayenne pepper, to taste
  • salt and black pepper, to taste


1. Put the ribs in a braising pan and cover them with Coca-Cola. Bring to a boil and cook for 40 minutes until tender. Remove ribs from the pan and reduce the cola until it has a syrupy consistency.

2. Mix in all the other ingredients and leave the sauce to cool.?

3. Preheat oven to 400°F. Place the ribs in a baking tray.

4. Pour the marinade over the ribs and bake for 30 minutes.?

5. For additional texture and flavor, finish the ribs by grilling in charcoal for?6 to 8 minutes. Serve with grilled corn, potato salad, or homemade coleslaw.



Check most Southern cookbooks and you’ll likely find recipes that use Coke as an ingredient of choice, whether as a meat tenderizer or even used to moisten cake. Chef Pete has also tried this recipe with Dr. Pepper, Mug Root Beer, and even Sarsi. So go ahead and use your favorite soda to liven up these spareribs!



Hallelujah Potato Salad

Serves 4 to 6

  • 5 Yukon gold potatoes?
  • 4 large hard-cooked eggs, peeled?
  • 1 tablespoon salt?
  • 1 cup + 2 tablespoons mayonnaise?
  • 1 cup pickle relish, drained
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 1/2 cup chopped green bell pepper?
  • 1/2 cup chopped celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley?
  • 1/4 cup yellow mustard?
  • 1 large diced pimiento?
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice?
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil?
  • 1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and minced?
  • hot sauce, to taste?
  • 1/2 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • salt and pepper, to taste

1. Cook potatoes in boiling water for 20 minutes or until tender. Drain and cool for 15 minutes. Peel potatoes and place in a large bowl.

2. Add eggs and chop mixture into bite-size pieces. Sprinkle with salt and toss to coat.?

3. Combine mayonnaise and the rest of the ingredients, except the paprika, salt and pepper. Gently stir into potato mixture. Sprinkle with paprika, then add salt and black pepper to taste. Serve immediately, or cover and chill in the refrigerator before serving.



Instead of regular potatoes, try this recipe with multicolored sweet potatoes instead.


A longer version of this article appeared in FOOD Magazine, Issue 1, 2017

Recipes by Peter Ayson

Photography by Paulo Valenzuela

Styling by Pixie Rodrigo Sevilla

Set styling by Athena Fregillana