2In a large glass baking dish or enameled roasting pan, combine vinegar, water, soy sauce, garlic, bay leaves, salt, and peppercorns. Add ribs, turning to coat all sides. Marinate 1-1/2 to 2 hours at room temperature, turning ribs several times.
33. Pour marinade into a wide pot or 2 deep skillets with lids. Heat liquid to boiling, add ribs, cover and simmer about 1 hour, turning once until ribs are almost completely tender.
4Add coconut milk and simmer about 15 minutes longer until ribs are tender but not falling from bone.
55. Remove ribs from pan and boil sauce to reduce it to about 3/4 cup. Strain sauce. (Ribs can be prepared to this point up to a day ahead.)
66. Bring ribs and sauce to room temperature. Brush ribs with sauce and place on barbecue grill over very hot coals. Cook, turning once and basting with remaining sauce until outside is slightly crispy, 1 to 3 minutes each side.
Option: To broil, preheat broiler. Baste ribs with sauce. Place on rack about 2-1/2 inches from heat source and broil at medium-high heat until slightly crispy, about 1-1/2 minutes on each side.
Tip: To remove thick coconut milk from canned coconut milk, first chill. Then, without shaking can, open and scoop thick portion out, leaving watery portion behind.