Pork Spare Ribs (SBQ, Ep. 1)

No sauce needed, bitches!  With a little time and T.L.C., these St. Louis ribs will definitely get your private parts to move on their own, and the buttery glaze is SO worth the make-out session between your mouth and fingers afterwards...

What you will need:

  • Whole rack(s) of St.-Louis-cut pork spare ribs
  • Your favorite good-quality honey
  • Precisely one shitload of Fode's Original Rib Rub (See Ingredients in the "Seas'nins" section!)
  • One shitload of Fode's Cranberry Mop (ditto!)
  • Hickory wood and/or fruit wood for smoking
  • Some form of Low 'n Slow cooker (i.e. BBQ smoker, grill, or oven if you're hard-pressed)

How you do it:

  1. Make sure your ribs are completely thawed, unless you want to eat pork ice with grill bark in 3 hours.  Depending on the meatiness of your ribs, you can feel free to leave the silverskin membrane on the back curvature, because it's much easier to render on spare ribs (and harder to remove, I think) than the silverskin on baby-backs.  It doesn't hurt, however, to take a fork with good points and pop a few holes through just the fatty layers, without damaging the meat fibers too much.
  2. Apply enough Rib Rub to cover all exposed areas of the meat, and then apply a bit more all around.  If I'm looking for more spicy ribs, I'll apply an even mist of chipotle pepper powder or something similar AFTER the rub is already on.  This puts the pepper's heat on the ass-end of the flavor/bite, instead of numbing my tastebuds at the front and ruining my Rub's hard work (get the pun?).
  3. Let your ribs sit at room temp., or in the fridge/cooler while you get your fire/heat going in the cooker.  We're using what's called a Stick-Burning Offset Smoker, with hickory and a bit of fruitwood.  Whatever your method, you want a cooker temp. between 225-250 degrees (F).  This is considered a "low 'n slow" cook on INDIRECT heat, so enjoy listening to "Star-B-Q" while you wait.
  4. You'll want LOTS of moisture in there with the ribs, so make a boat of aluminum foil, and fill it 3/4 full with fruitwood chips (we used cherry in "SBQ, Ep. 1").  Drown the chips in high-quality cranberry juice (or any fruit juice) and let them sit while the fire's going.
  5. Once your cooker is fired up to target, slap your rack(s) onto the grate meat-side-up.  Clear a space towards the front of the smoker, and put your foil boat there.  This will add to your ribs' smoke flavor, and keep that smoke heavy with moisture.
  6. After about 40min. (or when the rub starts to darken from the caramelization process), mist/mop your rack(s) with the Cranberry Mop.  Re-mop every 20min. or so, but don't flood your ribs.  They should be a little tacky on the surface when you go to re-mop, but there should be a nice dark mahogany bark forming all around the meat.
  7. Once your meat has reached an internal temp. of ~165-175 degrees (F) and is completely covered in a rich-looking bark, remove the rack(s) from the grill and get ready to work FAST.  Lay each rack on a large double-layer of foil, with plenty of room on the sides.  Pour a few tablespoons of Mop underneath, then lay down a healthy amount of brown sugar under the length of the rack(s).  Put down a tab of butter every 2-3 bones on top of the brown sugar, then a spiral of honey on top of that.  Dust the whole "mattress" with Rib Rub.  Quickly repeat the entire layering process on the TOP of the rack(s), with one exception:  dust with the Rub first AND last.
  8. Pour another couple of tablespoons of mop AROUND the meat, then TENT-wrap the foil to facilitate steaming inside, while making sure you don't leave any holes for your flavor to piss out.
  9. Finish your ribs in the foil at a "hot 'n fast" cooker temp. (between 275-325 deg. F).  Once the meat's internal temp. reaches ~195 degrees (F), remove your wrapped ribs from the grill and let them rest in the wrap on the counter for at least 5-10min. before opening the foil.
  10. Take the rack(s) out of the foil, but leave the juice in the bottom of the wrap.  Coat the top and bottom of the rack with a paintbrush and that sticky-sweet juice, then cut your ribs into either single- or double-bone portions.  Use the juice to glaze the entire surface of each portion, and serve whenever-the-fuck.  Keep the basting juice handy for dipping!
  11. Don't forget to clean up, you messy fucks!