North·The Arctic Kitchen

This moose ribs recipe makes a 'sticky, tender, melt in your mouth mess'

This week's Arctic Kitchen recipe is 13-hour baked moose ribs that are worth every second.

'The moose provides the best ribs out there,' says James Willier

James Willier has been hunting his whole life. He has a passion for helping out his local reserve by harvesting for those who cannot. (Submitted by James Willier)

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How good are moose ribs?

Ask James Willier.

"The moose provides the best ribs out there," he said in an interview with CBC on Facebook messenger.

They're so good, he will gladly spend 13 hours cooking them.

"Self-fed, no added by-products, growth hormones or preservatives ... they're really Mother Nature's gift to us," Willier said.

Willier is from Sucker Creek First Nation in Northern, Alberta and has a serious passion for cooking and hunting his own food.

He says from a young age, he learned the moral value of harvesting and what it means for an animal to give its life.

It doesn't matter what time of year it is, James Willier is out hunting and trapping. He says 90 per cent of his diet is wild game. (Submitted by James Willier)

"Growing up we didn't have much, however we always had a warm bed and meat in the freezer … 90 per cent of my diet is wild game I've harvested," he said.

When he brings home fresh meat he hops in the kitchen and creates delicious dishes.

And when it comes to moose meat, his 13-hour ribs recipe is really, really good.

"[It's] worth every second … a sticky, tender, melt-in-your-mouth mess."

He shared a photo in our Facebook group The Arctic Kitchen and people were salivating.

"OMG!! WOW," said one member.

"Nom, nom, nom," said another.

James Willier makes mean moose ribs. He baked these for 13 hours and said the meat fell off the bone. (Submitted by James Willier)

Here's how he makes them:

At 6:30 a.m. put them in the oven in a four-inch deep pan with one pack of onion soup mix and four cups of water.

Cover and set the oven at 225 F.

Flip the ribs every three hours over a 13-hour time period. 

For Willier's homemade BBQ sauce, you will need to mix:

  • 1/2 cup ketchup.
  • 1/2 cup of hickory BBQ sauce.
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar.
  • 2 tbsp of crushed garlic.
  • 1 tbsp onion powder.
  • 1/2 tsp basil.
  • 1 tsp black pepper.
  • 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper, for a subtle little kick. 

Remove ribs from the oven, drain stock, toss the ribs in the BBQ sauce.

Place on parchment paper and back into the oven at 250° F for another half hour. 

Just before taking them out, use the broiler oven setting for about a minute to give them a beautiful caramelization.