Sunday, September 28, 2008

St. Louis-style spareribs

-I've had a few comments on my postings, often wishing for pictures. Someday soon I'll get a digital camera. I, too, like looking at pictures when reading recipes.

I often mention the "specials" bin in the meat departments of my Safeway and King Soopers. Every time I go to the store I check these out. I have gotten some wonderful deals. Last Friday I found a full rack of ribs marked down 50%. The price was still $7.12, but I knew we would get two dinners out of it.

I'm no expert, but I would describe these ribs as a meatier, longer rack than spareribs - not, however, as meaty as the big country-style ribs. There were 14 bones, which I suppose is what the number would be as a matter of course.

I developed a way to cook these ribs some time ago. I'm fond of "dry-roasted" ribs of the sort I used to chow down on in Memphis years ago. Preparation could not be simpler. There is a membrane on the back side which some people insist needs to be removed. It's a little difficult to do and after a brief try I just said screw it.

Roasted ribs
1 rack St. Louis-style spareribs
cayenne pepper
chicken broth
BBQ sauce (optional)

Cut the ribs into 2 7-rib sections. Make a rub by combining 1 part cumin, 1 part paprika and 1/2 part cayenne pepper. 2 tbsp total will be plenty for a rack. I always make more so that it's available on a whim for other applications.

Rub the mixture into the ribs on both sides. Place the ribs on a plate and cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Do this in the morning or the day before if you can. At the least give the ribs an hour or two to absorb the flavors.

Preheat the oven to 275°. Put the ribs on a flat baking rack and apply salt and pepper to taste. Roast meat side up for 1 and 1/2 hours.

This next part is optional. If you don't use it, just continue roasting the ribs after covering them with foil for another 1/2 - 1 hour. Combine 1 cup chicken broth with 1/2 cup commercial barbeque sauce or ketchup and mustard, whatever you have. Pour some of this (2/3 or so) over the ribs, cover loosely with foil and continue roasting for another 1/2 hour. I think I actually roasted my ribs for as much as 2 1/2 hours. I wasn't paying attention. If you use this sauce it won't matter, the ribs will just get more and more succulent.

Remove the ribs from the oven and allow them to cool until you can handle them comfortably. Cut them into individual pieces between the bones. Heat up the sauce in the microwave and moisten the ribs with it and serve. Have plenty of paper towels at the table and make a mess of yourself.

For a free excerpt of my book, “A Year of Food,” in which I opine, report, cook, muse and philosophize about everything that passed my lips for an entire year, write to me at:

No comments:

Tuesday Tag-Along

Tuesday Tag-Along

Foodie BlogRoll