How to Make Delicious Plum Spare Ribs at Home

Q1: Can I substitute regular plums for preserved plums?
A1: Preserved plums (话梅) are essential for the unique flavor, but if unavailable, you can use regular plums with a bit of added sugar and vinegar for a similar taste profile.

Q2: Is it necessary to use starch for soaking the ribs?
A2: Yes, soaking ribs in starch helps to remove impurities and results in a clearer soup. It also makes the ribs tender.

Q3: Can I skip the sugar caramelization step?
A3: Caramelizing sugar is crucial for the dish’s color and flavor. If you’re not confident, do it over low heat until the sugar dissolves.

Q4: What’s the purpose of cooking the ribs in water with ginger?
A4: This step helps in tenderizing the ribs and infusing them with ginger’s aroma, making the meat more flavorful.

Plum Spare Ribs


  • Spare ribs
  • 8 slices of ginger
  • Preserved plums (话梅)
  • Cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons cooking wine
  • Rock sugar
  • 1 tablespoon premium soy sauce (味极鲜)
  • 2 tablespoons dark soy sauce
  • Oyster sauce
  • Vegetable oil
  1. Soak the preserved plums in water for 20 minutes. Do not discard the water.
  2. Marinate the ribs in a mixture of cornstarch, cooking wine, and water for 20 minutes. Rinse and boil with ginger for 30 minutes. Rinse again in clean water.
  3. Heat oil in a pan.
  4. Caramelize the sugar (low heat if necessary).
  5. Add the ribs and stir-fry until they change color.
  6. Add the preserved plums and their water.
  7. Add oyster sauce, premium soy sauce, and dark soy sauce in sequence, stirring well.
  8. Add enough water to cover the ribs and bring to a boil.
  9. Stir-fry until the sauce thickens, then remove the ribs.
  10. Finish with the ribs glazed in sauce.
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  • Rich in protein from the spare ribs.
  • Contains ginger, which has anti-inflammatory properties.
  • Preserved plums add unique flavors and some vitamins.
  • Dark soy sauce and oyster sauce provide umami and minerals.