Take a little time and prepare spareribs by shaping them into St. Louis or Kansas City style slabs. By trimming the whole sparerib, you'll end up with a slab that cooks great and looks great.
A whole sparerib slab is made up of six main parts.
A whole slab has thick section, thin sections, flaps of loose meat, and has an awkward shape for cooking and serving. There are several benefits to trimming a slab before it's barbecued.
A trimmed slab is an even thickness overall, so it cooks evenly. It's easier to handle when cooking and serving. And when looks are important, a trimmed up slab looks great.
This is how to prepare the slab St. Louis style.
That's how to prepare spareribs St. Louis style. The slab is now rectangular shaped, except for the point. That's the loose, boneless piece of meat at the narrow end. Slicing off the point and squaring up that end changes the St Louis slab into a Kansas City style slab.
Now evenly shaped and a little smaller, the trimmed pork rib slab will fit better in the grill or smoker, and is much easier to cut into serving sized pieces.
Oh, and about all those pieces that were trimmed off. Season 'em up and
cook them right along with your ribs. They'll be done sooner than the
ribs and are great for snacking.
If you decide to smoke the sparerib slab without adjusting its shape, there are still a few things that should be trimmed off. Deposits of fat and loose flaps of skin should be cut away first.
On the bone side, which would be the interior of the hog, you'll see a strip of tissue running lengthwise, attached to the bone. This is referred to as the flap. It's actually part of diaphragm, and should be trimmed off.
There's a translucent membrane covering the rib bones that also needs to be removed. If left on, seasoning flavors won't reach the meat on that side. It can also become rather chewy when cooked.
Finally, trim off any thin pieces of meat from the edges of the slab. The thin meat will dry out and overcook. Pay special attention to the point-end.