Hellz yeah. Barbecue pork ribs: it doesn't get more American than this. There's a part of me that wants to wax on romantically about barbecue, and go through the myriad of sauces that have evolved over time and location, but why do poorly what Rhett and Link on Youtube have done most efficiently:
So, with that out of the way, let's dive right in to the recipe!
The first thing you'll want to do is precook your meat. The trick here is to let most of the meat's flavor develop with minimal seasoning without losing any of its moisture, so I went with some basic rock salt, black pepper, white pepper, and a dash of paprika, wrapped the whole shebang in aluminum, and baked in the oven at 275F. You'll be leaving them in here for two hours, plenty of time to whip up the rest of the ingredients. As you can see, we went with thick, full-sized ribs, rather than babybacks.
Next, we need to work on the sauce. I honestly forget where I found it, and I did a little tweaking based on ingredients I had on hand, and to my personal tastes.
Start out with a shallot sliced thin, 6 crushed cloves of garlic, a tablespoon of chili powder, a teaspoon of cayenne, and some olive oil in a hot pan. Cook until the shallots are soft and starting to brown.
Next, toss it into a pot, and add 3 cups of ketchup, 1 cup of brown sugar, 1 cup of apple cider, 1/2 a cup of white vinegar, 1/4 cup of molasses, 2 tablespoons of yellow mustard, 1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper, and 2 teaspoons of cayenne, plus a few drops of liquid smoke. Mix well and bring to a brief slow boil, then lower the temperature to simmer uncovered for 30 minutes or so.
Finally, it's not barbecue unless you serve it up with some slaw, in my book. So, I took 2/3 of head of cabbage (leftover from the previous recipe) and chopped it up, added a diced quarter of red onion, and thin-sliced ten baby carrots. For the dressing, in a separate bowl I whisked 2/3 of a cup of mayonaisse, 4 tablespoons of white vinegar, 1/2 a cup of sugar, 1 tablespoon of mustard seed, and 2 tablespoons of yellow mustard. Whisk until you get an even texture, add to the vegetables and toss to coat evenly. Cover with plastic wrap and set in the fridge until you're ready to serve.
Once you hit the two-hour mark, take your ribs out and put in a large bowl, then pour your barbecue sauce over the top. Out on the grill, you'll want to go with an indirect heat. My grill has two burners under the disperser, with a half-rack above the main rack. I fired up one burner at full heat and closed the grill to start gathering heat, then lowered it to the lowest setting and placed the ribs on the main rack and half rack opposite the flames. Every ten minutes or so, I would flip the ribs and baste them with a basting brush and more sauce, slowly building up a nice thick coat of sauce. After doing this about eight or nine times, we took them off and dug in.
Every so often, we'd get a fairly peppery bite from a rib, but I think we can chalk that up to the precooking. I probably should have mixed the seasonings and dusted them over the ribs instead of just kinda dumping them on. But that said, not a single bite was ever bad. We kept extra sauce on the side for dolloping atop the foods, and the coleslaw came out as a sweet slaw somewhat similar to, but definitely better than, the kind you might find at KFC. The extra ribs we even shredded up and had with the slaw for barbecue pulled pork sandwiches a couple days later.