Since moving home to live with my parents, I have been doing a lot more cooking. Which makes me really happy, as I do enjoy it. However, I’ve also realized that I enjoy cooking for myself and other people far more than I enjoy just cooking for myself, and I hate the cleanup. So, I didn’t do a whole lot of cooking while living by myself, but now that I am living with other people, I am cooking a lot more. Yay!
One of the things I’ve started cooking (that I never cooked before) are ribs. So far I have just cooked pork ribs, as I am still a bit nervous about trying beef ribs.
The cooking process itself is pretty easy:
- Take ribs, rinse them off, and parboil them for anywhere from three to 30 minutes. This helps keep them moist during cooking, boils off some of the fat, and just generally seems to work out well. As little as three minutes can be used, but I’ve found it does better if I at least boil them until some blood starts seeping out the ends of the rib bones.
- Slather some type of sauce on the ribs, and arrange them in a roasting pan with a wire rack to keep them from resting directly on the bottom of the pan.
- Put some water in the bottom of the roasting pan, about enough to make the pan 1/8 to 1/4 inch deep in water in the bottom.
- Place the covered pan in a 325 or 350 F oven and cook for at least a couple hours. Check on them once in a while to make sure there is enough water in the bottom of the pan; if the water runs out, add some more. You can also add some more sauce to the ribs if you want, as what you initially put on will be diluted by the steam in the pan.
The ribs are done when the bones pull out easily. If after a couple hours the meat looks done but is still a little bit tough and attached to the bones, put the pan back in the oven, let the oven come up to temperature, and then turn the oven off and let everything sit for about an hour.
And yes, I know that true rib connoisseurs are probably horrified by my description above. However, this has worked for me so far and I haven’t gotten too many complaints.
Here are the sauces I’ve used. If you make these, make twice as much as you think you’ll need, and it will probably come out about right with a bit left over.
- Bulls-eye Original BBQ sauce
- Robust or strong black molasses (regular can be used also)
- Brown sugar
- Garlic powder
- Powdered Thyme
Take a bowl full of the BBQ sauce (size of bowl depends on how many ribs you are going to cook), and add in about 1/4 or less of the same amount of molasses. Sprinkle in some brown sugar to taste; be sure to mix well before each taste test. The Bulls-eye Original sauce is tangy and sweet and smoky, but a bit too bright and sweet. The molasses will help take some of sweetness out of it, and the molasses and brown sugar together will give it some more depth of taste. Once the basic mix (sauce, molasses, and brown sugar) is to your liking, add the garlic powder in about the same amount you would sprinkle on that amount of ribs. Once that is mixed in, add a little bit of thyme for just a little but of an herbal note.
Sweet hot sauce
- Bulls-eye Sweet and Sticky BBQ Sauce
- Robust or strong molasses
- Brown sugar
- Cayenne pepper
- Chili powder
- White pepper
- Dried basil
- Onion powder
This recipe will be quite a bit sweeter and a lot hotter than the previous one. As before, start with a bowl full of the sauce, and add in about 1/6 or 1/8 of the same volume of molasses, and brown sugar to taste. As before the, the molasses and brown sugar help to mellow out and deepen the flavor of the starter sauce, but this recipe is supposed to be sweeter anyway so it doesn’t need as much adjusting. Then, depending on what type of heat you like, add in the cayenne pepper, chili powder, and white pepper until it has the bite you are looking for. Finally, add in small amounts of the dried basil and onion powder to give it a sweet herbal finish.