I have been in love with ribs since I first encountered them at the age of four. I have written about that momentous event elsewhere on this blog site. Suffice it to say that I eat almost all parts of the pig and the ribs are still my favorite.
For about $250.00 you can go to any sporting goods store (Academy and Dick’s come to mind, but they aren’t paying me for the endorsement, so feel free to go wherever you choose!) and pick up one of these digital smokers. I have one like the one pictured above, that has been used heavily and looks like it. There are bells and whistles, but the most important part is that it has an oven, into which you can introduce smoke via woodchips and a heater which heats at consistant, low temperatures.
Both the meat and the chips are very inexpensive and the “low ‘n’ slow method produces delicious, tender meat every time. Chips can be bought in supermarkets, hardware sporting goods stores and come in a variety of woods. I keep Mesquite, cherry, apple and hickory to hand. They never go bad and a digital smoker will not use much at a time. I used to put them into my Webber (no endorsement from them either!) and go through a bag pretty quickly. The digital smoker is a wood chip “sipper” and I always have time to get more if I need them.
Around about these parts, we like to rub our ribs. Some folks like to mop them (and that’s good too!), but we apply a mixed spice, dry-rub before cooking, A typical rub may look something like this:
1 tablespoon cumin
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon granulated onion
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon brown sugar
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon white pepper
For those of you watching your salt and/or sugar intake, you can forgo the rub and just have the smoke flavor. However, the rub is what makes it super yummy.
How to cook Pork Spare Ribs?
This method is super-easy and a no brainer. 3-2-1!
Set the oven temperature for 225 degrees.
Place ribs on racks and smoke for 3 hours.
Wrap ribs in foil and place in oven for 2 hours.
Unwrap and place in oven for 1 hour to dry/caramelize
If you are mopping, you may want to add sauce during this last hour.
Get to know your smoker and it will provide you with easy to fix, delicious food like… oh, let’s say Turkey Legs!
I was just given some Paprika Peppers. They are ripening in the kitchen, but then I am going to smoke, dry and grind them. I will certainly blog about that. Keep checking back!