Sunday, July 5, 2009

The Best BBQ Ribs For a Southern Inspired Celebration

Our Fourth of July celebration this year was inspired by a good old fashioned southern food. Most of my family is from the south so I grew up on very basic, very GOOD home style meals. I decided to take that food heritage and use it as my inspiration for a holiday cookout for a few friends.

Food always tastes better when served on favorite dishes, right? I decided to use our jadeite for this summer celebration. Taking what I've learned from Martha, each guest received a "lapkin" which was a vintage inspired checked dishtowel with a coordinating rickrack hem. Dishes, lapkins, glasses and utensils were stacked up on the oil cloth topped table. (I love the oil cloth!) Guests grabbed a plate, and sat wherever they wanted to enjoy their meal.

Now... on to preparing some of the best BBQ ribs I've ever tasted!

I decided to use the recipe from a recent Martha podcast, when her guest Ollie Gates, of the famed Gates BBQ in Kansas City, MO. demonstrated his technique for cooking ribs on the grill. It all started with a rub to season the meat and 'get the juices flowing' before grilling.

1C Sugar
1/2 C Sea Salt
2T Paprika
2T Red Pepper Powder
1T Ground Celery Seed
1T Ground Cumin

Mix the salt and the sugar together before adding other ingredients. Mix well to evenly distribute all the spices.

I stored the remainder of the rub in a glass jar for future use.

Next, trim your slab of ribs of any excess fat. I also pre-scored the meat between the ribs.

Sprinkle the rub generously over both sides of the rib slab. The salt and sugar almost instantly get some of the juices running in the meat. Allow the rub to sit on the meat for about 15-20 minutes. Get your grill ready to roll while the rub is working it's magic.

Get your grill to the hottest possible temperature. The Gates BBQ method is to start 'em hot and then allow to slow cook. While the ideal method of grill cooking would be over a hickory wood fire, we used our outdoor gas grill with equally as wonderful results (less some of the hickory flavor)
Place the slab of ribs over the hottest part of the grill and cook for about 15 minutes. The meat will be well caramelized from the sugar based rub.

Turn the ribs over and turn the heat WAY down on the grill or move the ribs to the other side to allow for indirect cooking. No need to turn the ribs again. Allow the slab to slow cook with indirect heat for 1 and 1/2 hours.
Once the ribs are slow cooked, using a mop brush, brush both sides of the ribs generously with your favorite BBQ sauce, or make your own using your favorite recipe.

Cut the slab of ribs into individual pieces and pile on a platter for your guests to enjoy! I served individual cups of BBQ sauce if guests wanted it. All three 5lb slabs of ribs were devoured!
This was the first time in all my cooking years that I've ever cooked ribs on the grill. It's a recipe I'll certainly use again and again.


John R. said...

Looks great and I'm sure they were amazing! I will definitely be trying this recipe!

Elaine said...

My Momma always made the best country-style ribs, but I have never tried doing it. Your ribs look wonderful! I'll have to try doing them this summer and try that rub recipe.

Love the oilcloth and lapkins!

Matt's Kitchen said...

Coveting your dishes, oilcloth (very cool), and spice rack!