Hey, smoke lovers!
I had time for a quicky q-view this evening...well, quick for me, anyway (12 pics).
I had a very pleasant surprise this morning when I opened up my first package of loin backs from a recent case purchase at Sam's Club. There are 3 slabs instead of 2 per pack, which means I have 15 slabs instead of 10 (I packed these into my outdoor freezer in low light after the wife brought them home for me, so I had no idea)...what a bonus! Well, not knowing at first makes it a bonus, anyway.
I decided to try something a bit different than I've done before when preparing ribs (or anything else, for that matter), as my oldest boy is home from college classes just for today and is spending the night...he likes a very tender rib like my wife, only with a pretty heavy bark, while I like a tender rib and lighter bark. My 4 younger kids haven't mentioned just yet which style they like best...I think they're just happy to have ribs when I'm around to smoke 'em up and haven't yet discovered their personal preference for ribs.
For today's rib-fest, I applied a moderately heavy dose of rub on the bone-sides, rested them in the pan for about 10 minutes, flipped and applied a very heavy dose (about quadruple what I normally would use) and gently misted all 3 slabs with about 1.5oz water for what I hope will be a really good retention of the dry rub for a great bark. I've never sprayed my meats once they go into the smoker, and to spray the rubbed meat with water just seemed to make more sense for holding the rub in place and getting it started setting up a bark early on. Lots of folks spray apple juice every hour for flavor, added moisture and probably to help build the sugars for the bark...I say put the apple in the rub and get it on! LOL!!!
Smoke provided by a mix of very small to medium sized apple chunks @ 225*, a full water pan, 5,000 ft elevation, 33* ambient, light snowfall off & on all day, light winds and 4.0-1.5-0.5 method.
APPLE & RED BELL PEPPER PORK RIB RUB
4 Tbls ground dried apple
3 Tbls ground red bell pepper
1 Tbls ground rosemary
1.5 Tbls ground black peppercorn
1 Tbls garlic powder
2 tsp onion powder
1/2 Tbls oregano
1 Tbls paprika
1/2 Tbls chili powder
2 Tbls kosher salt
Rubbed and misted:
4 hours and it's time for a tented pan with a couple dashes of water...that rub looks good already, but man, wait 'til it's steamed a bit...it'll look even better:
Steamed and ready to firm up...there's that darker color I built into the rub with the paprika and chili powder...lack of those 2 ingredients will yeild a much lighter colored bark:
And, after a 30-min open grate ride...:
The pre-smoke misting of the heavy dose of dry rub was a neat trick...didn't lose any rub during handling at all, and it helped alot in forming this heavy bark. The bark wasn't hard, but firm, just like I was shooting for...a nice chew on the outside of some juicy, tender and meaty ribs. Oh, the dry rub flavor is another hit here, as well. Natural sweetness, a fruity and peppery profile, while keeping everything mild and nicely balanced. Of course the apple smoke was a nice way to bring all that goodness home. Give it a try if you're up for something different...and leave the spray bottle for dusting house plants...LOL!!! I know, I know, to each his own. I just don't like opening the smoke chamber and losing heat and smoke.
Thaks for peekin' at my lil' rib rub experiment! Enjoy!
Great smokes, everyone!