Beef and pork ribs come from one of the tenderest portions of the animal, yet the meat that surrounds the rib bones themselves tends to be tough and chewy. On the other hand, it is well-marbled and richly flavored, which is why ribs are so loved and appreciated. Ribs can be cooked by any slow-cooking method, but browning them in a cast-iron skillet and finishing them slowly is an easy, useful technique.
Cut the back ribs into half- or quarter-rack portions. Preheat your cast-iron skillet over a medium-high burner. Use two skillets for a larger quantity of ribs.
Pour 1 tbsp. of hot oil into the skillet. Sear the ribs until browned on the front and sides of each portion.
Arrange the ribs in the skillet, once browned, and add the wine or broth. Season with salt and pepper, then cover and simmer on the stovetop at low heat. You can also place them in a preheated oven at 325 degrees Fahrenheit.
Simmer or bake the ribs until they are fork-tender--up to three hours on the stovetop or as long as four hours in the oven. You may need to add some water midway through cooking, if you are using the stovetop.
Wrap the ribs loosely with aluminum foil and keep them warm for 10 minutes before serving.