Saturday, October 9, 2010
When most folks hear the word BBQ or Bar-Ba- Que; how ever you spell it, ribs are probably what comes to mind first. Slow smoked for hours rubbed with a blend spices, sweet and succulent these pork ribs take it to the next level with an extra layer of flavor from a glazing rub.
Whether Baby Backs or Spares they are all good. My personal preference is for Spare ribs trimmed to a ST. Louis cut. Spare ribs have more delicious pork and cost about 1/3 less per pound on average and give you a little extra meat for other uses after trimming, like a treat for the PitMaster or added to a pot of beans.
These ribs are best cooked low and slow on a smoker with indirect heat, however for those who for what ever reason don't have access to this equipment you can still enjoy these Pork-a-licious Pigcickels. You probably did not notice the BBQ pit that is in your kitchen, "SHhhh!!" "Don't tell anyone!" "They call it....... an oven."
Preparing these in the house requires 1 additional ingredient so stay tuned I will cover that in a little while.
First lets define what a properly cooked done to perfection Rib is: Cooked through when bitten, the meat should pull cleanly from the bone yielding at with a little tug. If they are falling off the bone they are over cooked!
How to tell when the ribs are done: The meat will have pulled back exposing the bone, when picked up with a set of tongs the rack should bend almost 90 deg if it bends to about 60 deg you need to cook them about another hour. Remember you can't rush perfection their done when their done.
Never BOIL ribs!!! They get mushy.
I hope you come to love these as much as I do they are truly one of best things I ever ate. Enjoy!
Prep time: 45 min Cook time: 5- 6 hrs.
Tools: Tea spoon, "really" sharp knife, small mixing bowl, cutting board, wax paper, measuring spoons. sheet pans, spray bottle(NEW), paper towels, BBQ grill, Smoker, or oven.
1 Rack of Pork ribs
1 4oz bottle paprika
2 oz sugaur
2 tsp lemon pepper
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp mustard powder
(Cherry Chipotle glazing rub)
1 package sugarfree Cherry Jello
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 - 1/2 tsp chiolte pepper
1 tbl brown sugar
1 tsp Basil
In a small bow combine the ingredients for your rubs and mix well. Transfer each one to a zip bag or an old spice bottle with a shaker top. Set these aside.
Remove the ribs from their packaging and rinse under cold water. Pat dry with paper towels and discard them. Place the ribs on your cutting board bones down.
*[This section applies to spare ribs only, if cooking Baby Backs skip down]
When you are looking at the rack you will notice there is what is referred to as the tail follow it along the outside edge to the bottom of the rack find the first long rib bone and cut the tail off close to the long bone and set aside.
The rack should be square on the ends with the breast bone still attached.
Feel along the a rib bones length until you feel the end of the bone, holding a finger on that spot lay the blade of your knife along this line across the bottom of the rib bones slice through the cartilage that connects the the breast bone to the ribs and remove the breast bone and the belly section, set this aside your rack should be a rectangular shape. [this rack already had the breast bone removed at the packing house it would have been in the lower left corner of this rack]
Next you will remove the membrane ( if left on it is like chewing a rubber band). Insert the end of a teaspoon s handle between the membrane and a bone working slowly and carefully loosen the membrane until you can grasp it between your thumb and fingers. Pull using steady pressure use a paper towel it will give you a better grip.
Congratulations, you have just created a St.Louis cut rack of pork spare ribs. I knew you could do it.
*Ok, finally we can get these ready to cook. Flip the rack bones down.
First a little sprinkle of Worcestershire sauce ** if you are roasting these in the oven use the liquid smoke instead** and rub it in to distribute evenly across the surface.
Apply the Pork Rub very generously in a heavy even coat.
Even though it is called a rub do not rub it in. Allow it to adsorb the Worcestershire or liquid smoke while you go build the fire in your pit and get it up to temp or preheat the oven to 225º F.
If you are cooking these in your oven place them on a sheet pan and on the center rack of your oven. Set your timer for 4 hours. If they will be cooked in a BBQ pit 4 hrs at 225º F. For all you Gas grill folks indirect 225º F 4 hrs.
After 4 hrs of unmolested cooking check for to see how far they will bend, if they go about 60deg you are ready to apply the Glazing rub. Apply in an even coat totally covering the ribs. Spray with water so they look shinny and moist and back in the Smoke 1 more hour. Check again in an hour with another bend test. If they bend close to 90deg they are done if not spray them again and check in 30 min.