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Sunday, July 5, 2009

I rove my baby back libs...Uncut, Uncensored & (temporarily) Raw

Knew I had to BBQ at least once this weekend and after seeing some delicious looking Chinese Style Salt and Pepper Wings was fully prepared to do grilled hot wings but once at the Market noticed Pork Short Ribs were only 99 cents per pound. Hadn't planned on taking on the low and slow method needed to make the best ribs but it is a holiday weekend and with just me and the family and I didnt need to buy a wheelbarrow full. Looking at the selection though I noticed Baby Backs weren't really all that much more. "Hmmmm, short ribs are so much work trimming and cutting and etc etc, wouldn't some semi low maintenance baby backs be better?"

With that I was in full blown rib mode.

I didn't have a handy rub ready as the 5lb bag I used to use for ribs was given to my brother during one of his Texas Smoker Frenzies he does every so often. In Lieu, I took some Chef Paul's Pork Magic and mixed it with Chef Paul's BBQ Magic with some additional Brown Sugar courtesy of Trader Joes and some Lemon Pepper.

Rubbed and Ready!

Next step is to balance the temperature (275-300 degrees) and get the smoke chips smoking without catching fire. Now on your standard Weber this can be pretty easy but with Propane its kind of balancing act using one burner to get the chips smoking, turning it off in time to prevent flare up, and cranking up another burner to keep the temp consistent. It is a bit daunting, but with red wine in hand on a holiday weekend-how could I complain?

Low and Slow with plenty of smoke.

After Roughly 3 hours its time to pull those puppies off but not before doing the BBQ glaze for 15-30 minutes. I cant stress enough to use the Olive Oil Trick when doing BBQ sauce on the grill. It's easy-basically cut up a bunch of garlic, and whip olive oil into any store bought BBQ sauce using a wire whip. This lessens the sugar concentration in the sauce to prevent burning as well as adding garlic flavor. Wont kid you-I used the Hickory BBQ Sauce from Walmart. Very good in that the garlic give an extra dimension in flavor and the Hickory BBQ Sauce has a tangy nuance that works perfectly with the sweet spicyness of the Dry Rub. Should mention as well that while I am not a big fan of White Corn-this year must be a good year for it as I have had it from a couple of different store and its been incredible every time. I recomend Henry's Market who had it 4 for a Buck. I laughed at the people checking the corn a the store making a mess in the aisle- at 25 cents an ear do we really need to check for quality and spend 30 minutes looking for the perfect ear?

Red Five Standing By-Almost There!

Finally, the ribs are ready to go! I was drinking a bottle of Avalon Cabernet that's constantly pimped by the people at Wine Pavilion in Lake Forest but I have to say its not that good....not even for the price. Maybe I should buy a Wine Aerator and try it again but overall not a good example of the varietal by any stretch. At this point I cant recommend enough the Chateau Ste Michelle Indian Wells Merlot at Costco but now I just may be outright babbling. Ribs are a hell of a lot of work-but when done right are worth the wait.