Smoky Spareribs

Nothing better than a slab of smoky spareribs to pick up a person's spirits, especially if you haven't enjoyed the flavor of smoked pork ribs recently. Ever notice how a plate of ribs brings a smile to the face?

Spareribs are a less expensive alternative to the pricier baby back ribs, reason being that they're not as "high on the hog". Pork spareribs are the lower two-thirds of the rib cage, far away from the tender pork loin and tenderloin, that sit right next to the babybacks.

With this recipe, you can still enjoy great tasting smoky ribs. And even though they're cheaper, many people prefer spareribs over the others.




Smoky Spareribs Recipe

This smoky spareribs recipe starts with a slathering of mustard, not so much for flavor, but as a sticky coating for the spicy rib rub to hang on to.

INGREDIENTS

  • One whole pork sparerib slab, trimmed
  • 1/2 cup yellow mustard
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons brown sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne peper



To prepare the spicy rib rub, combine all of the dry ingredients. Remove the meaty flap on the bone side of the slab, then pull off the tough membrane. This whitish membrane, also called the "fell", is a little tough and chewy, plus it prevents flavor from reaching the meat between the rib bones.

Rub the mustard evenly over the entire surface of the slab, then generously sprinkle on the rib rub. Cover the slab with plastic wrap and let it rest on the countertop (and absorb flavor) while you prepare the smoker.




Smoking Pork Spareribs

Preheat your smoker, or set up your grill for smoking. A temperature in the range of 225-240 degrees is perfect for smoking spareribs. Add some woodchips or chunks, and when the smoke begins to roll out, add the sparerib slab, bone side down.

The ribs will be done in 3-1/2 to 5 hours, depending on slab size and smoker temperature. The best ribs aren't falling apart tender, but still have a little chew to them. Test for doneness by pulling a pair of rib bones away from each other. The meat should separate easily from the bones, and be pink all the way through.

Remove the slab of smoky spareribs and set them aside to rest for 15 to 20 minutes. Cut into serving size sections, and pile them on the plates. Watch those smiles begin to form as the ribs make their way down the hatch!

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