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Dinner for Dad: Ribs and More, from Chef Michael Flores

Chef Michael Flores (Photo by Richard Mejia)

SavorSA welcomes guest blogger and chef, Michael Flores.  A man of many hats, Flores is a busy trained chef, cooking instructor, spokesperson, cookbook author, brother, son, friend and avid entertainer. While attending the prestigious Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, Michael worked as chef-intern to Chef Susan Spicer of New Orleans’ acclaimed Bayona. Upon graduating with honors from the CIA, Michael returned to San Antonio to begin his career, infusing every dish he creates with his love of the multicultural richness that has so influenced his life.

By Michael Flores

We all know Father’s Day as a celebration which honors and celebrates fathers, paternal bonds, and the influence of fathers in society. In my experience as a chef, it is unlike any of the other “Sunday celebrations” (e.g., Mother’s Day, Easter, etc.).  Going to fancy buffets or restaurants are not the typical norm for dad’s special day.

He doesn’t want to dress up, stand in lines waiting for food, sip champagne, or use his best manners. After all, it is his day. Based on my knowledge, Father’s Day does not mean the same to men as Mother’s Day does to women; you don’t see pops walking around with a boutonniere that special Sunday that’s dedicated to him.  And the toughest problem that comes with Father’s Day is — the gift!

I offer you a simple solution for all of the above: Simply prepare him a meal at home.  How does that saying go: Food is the best way to a man’s heart.  Invite all of the family over; everyone can help in some part of the meal.  Have lots of his favorite drinks on hand.  Let him dress however he wants.  Tell stories, play games, and enjoy the love around the table.  Great memories go further than ties!

Meat on the grill, family close, is sometimes just what Dad want's for Father's Day.

As for the menu, I think I can help you out with that.  I recently taught a sold out class at Sur La Table entitled “Guy’s Night Out:  Ribs.”  The men, and one woman who dared to enter the cave, loved it.  We made three different ribs:  Beer Braised Ribs in Rum Barbecue Sauce, Spicy Honey Mustard Ribs, and Roasted Barbecued Spare Ribs. The sides included a Chopped Salad with Tamarind-Tequila Vinaigrette, and Roasted Corn with a Parmesan-Lemon Topping.

Now there is a Father’s Day buffet for Dad!  One where he does not have to worry about spilling something on his suit (assuming you got him to wear one), a plate to be cleared, or a new fork to be brought.  Not to mention the bill that he (usually) has to pay at the end of the meal.

The only item left is dessert.  This has a simple solution(s).  Every family has a favorite dessert that is served at all family functions. If dad likes it, make it.  If Aunt Gertrude’s gelatin salad doesn’t happen to be on his list of favorites, how about an assortment of cupcakes for him to choose from, or ice cream?  Or there is always my favorite, eight ounces of softened cream cheese whipped with one small jar of marshmallow cream, served with fresh strawberries for dipping.

To all you dads out there, or other father figures, I hope you get the Father’s Day of your dreams.  Happy Father’s Day from Chef Michael and SavorSA.


Recipes: See Links to Flores’ above recipes in the list to the right.

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Spicy Honey Mustard Ribs

Spicy Honey Mustard Ribs

2 pounds country-style spareribs, bone in (or your favorite ribs)

1 cup honey mustard

2 tablespoons honey

1 tablespoon Sambal Oelek (ground fresh chile paste)

¼ cup soy sauce

2 teaspoons cumin

1 teaspoon coriander

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

4 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced

Remove the membrane from the underside of the ribs and place ribs on a pan.

Combine the remaining ingredients in a bowl.  Stir well to incorporate all of the flavors.  Coat the ribs evenly on both sides with the sauce and marinate from 15 minutes up to 12 hours.

Heat your grill to medium (325 degrees).  Brush the grill with a flavorless cooking oil, and then lay the ribs meaty side up in the center of the grill.  Every so often, baste the ribs while cooking with the extra sauce.  Grill the ribs until the meat begins to shrink from the ends of the rib bones.

Approximate Grilling Times:

• Pork baby back ribs and country-style spare ribs,   75 minutes

• Spareribs & beef ribs, 90 minutes

• Lamb ribs, 40 minutes

To serve, cut each side of ribs in half, into three sections, or into individual ribs.  Serve at once.

Makes 4 servings


 Recipe based on one in The Great Ribs Book by Hugh Carpenter & Teri Sandison


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Beer-Braised Ribs in Rum Barbecue Sauce

These ribs are made in a pressure cooker for the utmost in tenderness.


Beer-Braised Ribs in Rum Barbecue Sauce

4 pounds country-style pork ribs

1 (12-ounce) bottles of Red Stripe beer (or your favorite)

1 cup water

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

Rum Barbecue Sauce (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Pour the beer, water and vinegar into a 6-quart or larger pressure cooker; add ribs, arranging them so none are right on top of each other, though they do not have to be submerged in the liquid to cook properly.

Lock the lid in place and heat to high pressure over high heat, then lower heat so that pressure is maintained; cook 15 minutes and then turn off the heat and release the pressure.  Carefully remove the lid, tilting the cooker away from you to allow the steam to escape.

Transfer ribs to a foil-lined baking pan and brush the barbecue sauce on all sides of the ribs; roast until browned and crisp on top, about 10 minutes; turn the ribs over, brush with more sauce and roast about 5 more minutes.

Serve with more sauce, if you like.

For the Rum Barbecue Sauce

1 can of tomato paste

1/3 cup dark rum

1/4 cup rice vinegar

1/4 cup molasses

1 tablespoon Pickapeppa Sauce

Dash of hot pepper sauce

1 tablespoon soy sauce

2 garlic cloves

Place all of the ingredients in a blender and purée.  Pour into a saucepan and bring to a simmer.  Simmer for five minutes stirring frequently.  Cool and refrigerate until needed.

Makes 4 servings.


Recipe Created by Chef Michael Flores  •  ©2012 Mis En Place, LLC

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Chopped Salad with Tamarind-Tequila Vinaigrette

Chopped Salad with Tamarind-Tequila Vinaigrette Topped with Gorgonzola & Pepitas

For the Vinaigrette

½ cup tamarind beverage base

2 tablespoons tequila

1/4 cup sherry vinegar

Juice of 1 lime

2 green onions

5 garlic cloves

1 serrano chile

2 teaspoons kosher salt

2 cups olive oil

For the vinaigrette, combine all ingredients, except for the olive oil, in a blender and purée until smooth.  With the motor running slowly pour in the oil to form an emulsion.  Taste, and adjust the seasonings if necessary.  Refrigerate until needed.

For the Salad

2 romaine hearts, chopped fine

1 can of garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed

¼ cup kalamata olives, sliced

2 green onions, sliced

1/3 cup bacon pieces

1 red bell pepper, seeded and diced

Cilantro sprigs

Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled

Pumpkin seeds, toasted

Place all of the ingredients – except for the cheese and seeds – in a large mixing bowl and toss with just enough vinaigrette to lightly coat.  Divide among plates or place in a large salad bowl or platter and top with the Gorgonzola cheese and pumpkin seeds.

Recipe Created by Chef Michael Flores  •  ©2012 Mis En Place, LLC

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Roasted Barbecued Spare Ribs

Roasted Barbecued Spare Ribs

3-4 pounds spareribs

1 lemon, thinly sliced

1 large onion, thinly sliced

1 cup catsup

1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon chili powder

1 teaspoon hot sauce

2 cups water


Place ribs in shallow roasting pan, meaty side up.  Cover evenly with lemon & onion slices.  Roast at 450oF for 30 minutes.  Remove from oven and drain juices.


While ribs are roasting bring the remainder of the ingredients to a boil.  Pour over the drained ribs and return to the oven whose temperature has been turned down to 325 degrees. Roast for an hour, basting every 15 minutes.  If the sauce gets too thick add more water.


Recipe from My Family • My Friends • My Food by Michael H. Flores  •  ©2003 Mis En Place, LLC

210-545-CHEF (2433)  •

Used and Reprinted with Permission

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Guys’ Night Out Class: BBQ Ribs at Sur La Table

Chef Michael Flores

Join chef Michael Flores this Thursday at 6:30 p.m. for a ‘guys’ night out’ class. It’s all about ribs, and class attendees will get to learn how to make a slew of them. On the menu are Beer-Braised Ribs in Rum Barbecue Sauce, Spicy Honey Mustard Ribs, Roasted Barbecued Spare Ribs, Roasted Corn with Parmesan-Lemon Topping and Chopped Salad with Tamarind-Tequila Vinaigrette.

You’re also welcome to BYOB to class. The cost of the class is $69 per person.

To sign up for the class, which will be at the La Cantera Sur La Table, go to and choose “Cooking Classes”. Enter your zip code and then follow the instructions. Or, call 800-243-0852.


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Oysters 101 at Sur La Table

Oysters on the half shell.

Oysters 101 with chef Michael Flores explores the how the different water environments flavor these tasty mollusks.

The class, that includes a menu of oyster-based dishes, is Tues., May 1, 6:30 p.m. at Sur La Table at the Shops at La Cantera.

To sign up for this class log on to and choose “Cooking Classes.”  Enter your zip code and then follow the online instructions.  Or, you may call 800-243-0852.

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Restaurant Notes & Quotes: New Caribbean, Burgers at the Witte and More

New Calypso Rotisserie Opening this Month

Pierre O. Kranzle, owner of Azuca Nuevo Latino in Southtown, will open up a Caribbean fusion restaurant in Helotes later this month. The restaurant, Calypso Rotisserie, will be just outside Loop 1604 at 12030 Bandera Road.
Expect a colorful, casual but sophisticated atmosphere.

The menu will include items such as an all-natural rotisserie-style chicken, pork roast crusted with Latin spices, beef short ribs basted with a blend of Caribbean flavors, a hot-pressed Cuban Sandwich, burritos, pineapple coconut rice and a selection of local and Latin beers.

The new restaurant will be open seven days a week, from 10:30 a.m. to 9:30 p.m.

Max’s Wine Dive Teams up with Witte

Max’s Wine Dive takes its gourmet  comfort food to the Witte Museum’s 6th Annual Burgers, Bottles and Beer this Friday (June 17) from 6-8:30 p.m.  Plus, Cheesy Jane’s is bringing the milkshakes.  Make your reservations soon by calling 210-357-1922 (by Tuesday).
Meanwhile, stop in at Max’s Wine Dive, 340 E. Basse Road, and check out the new summer menu. It all looks good! The Witte Museum is at 3801 Broadway. Those in the Quillin Society, Explorers, Voyagers and Witte Society get in to the Friday event free.
Have a Gooey Eclair — and a Bottomless Cup of Earl’s Coffee

This particular national celebration might have passed you by in previous years, but thanks to Earl Abel’s, you might want to put it on your calendar for June 22.

Earl Abel's is giving away coffee to go with one of these chocolate-y treats.

Celebrate National Chocolate Éclair Day at Earl Abel’s, 1201 Austin Highway, on that day and they will have chocolate éclairs made fresh by head baker Tony Sanchez.  Plus, you’ll get all of Earl’s organic coffee you care to drink.

The éclairs can be purchased for $3.95, with mini versions available upon request for parties and special events.

Earl Abel’s is open 7 days a week. Visit them online by clicking here.  Call 210.822-7333 to place to go orders or order online here.


Fourth of July Firecracker Foods, Free Class by Chef Michael Flores

This free cooking class, offered on June 25, is part of chef Michael Flores’s series of cooking demonstrations taught at La Taza Coffee House,
15060 San Pedro Ave. If you’re looking for recipes to serve on July 4th, this is the place to come.
Class is from 10:30-11:30 a.m. On the menu are Tomatillo Quesadillas, Bloody Mary Dip, Candied Jalapeno Cheese Spread with Pepitas and Sweet-n-Spicy Parsley’d Shrimp.
Guests will learn new culinary ideas and techniques taught by Flores, well-known local chef, author, television personality, and owner of a specialty foods company. The classes in this series take place on the fourth Saturday of each month at the time given above.

Fig Tree Winemaker Dinner Features Craggy Range Founder, Steve Smith MW

The viticulturalist, founder and director of wine at Craggy Range, at Hawkes Bay, New Zealand, wears many hats, and puts out a spectacular product.

On June 30, at the Fig Tree Restaurant, Steve Smith, who also is a Master of Wine, will discuss the fine wines from the winery and guests will get to sample them paired with carefully matched cuisine at the River Walk restaurant.

The reception begins at 6:30 p.m., with dinner at 7 p.m. at the Dashiell House. The cost is $85 per person, plus tax and service charge. The restaurant is at 515 Villita St. Make reservations at 210-224-1976.








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Kids in the Kitchen Cooking Healthy

The Junior League of San Antonio will host its third annual Kids in the Kitchen event Saturday. The fun takes place at the Bright Shawl, 819 Augusta Ave., 9:30 a.m. –  1 p.m.

This is an education initiative to teach kids how to eat healthy and stay active. The children will participate in hands-on activities,

Chef Michael Flores

including the preparation of practical meals, led by chef Michael Flores.

“The goal of Kids in the Kitchen is to provide children with practical tools that will help them make healthy choices,” said Anna-Melissa Cavazos, president of the Junior League of San Antonio.

Flores and League members will discuss with the kids the importance of healthy eating and the benefits of an active life. The children will create recipes, discover the process of growing food from a farmer, and take home lots of goodies.

The event is free.

Also in the news: The San Antonio Food Bank’s Summer Food Service Program has been awarded Feeding America’s Child Hunger Program of the Year, according to an announcement on Facebook.

The local program makes sure that low-income children have nutritious breakfasts and lunches when school is not in session.

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