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For the Tuscan herb rub: Strip the leaves from the parsley, rosemary, mint, nepitella and fresh lavender, if using. Put them in a mortar and pestle with the sage leaves (and the dried lavender, if using instead of fresh), salt, pepper and olive oil and mash to a paste. Rub the ribs thoroughly with the herb rub.
For the sauce: Heat the olive oil in a large, high-sided oven-proof skillet over medium high heat. Once hot, add the ribs without crowding the skillet and cook until golden brown on each side, about 7 minutes per side. Remove the ribs to a plate to hold after they are browned off. Repeat with the remaining ribs.
Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and season with some salt and pepper and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Add the wine, olives and bay leaves and cook until the smell of alcohol has dissipated, about 4 minutes.
Meanwhile, cut through each rib to separate completely. Bring the sauce to a simmer and nestle all the ribs back into the pan, meat side down. Cover and bake until the ribs are tender and almost falling from the bone, about 1 hour. Scatter the chopped parsley on top and serve hot.