"The tradition of Italian cooking is that of the matriarch. This is the cooking of grandma. She didn't waste time thinking too much about the celery. She got the best celery she could and then she dealt with it."--Mario Batali

Smoked Baby Back Ribs Recipe

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This recipe for Smoked Baby Back Ribs, by , is from The Halverson Family Cookbook , one of the cookbooks created at FamilyCookbookProject.com. We help families or individuals create heirloom cookbook treasures.

Brad Crosser


Premium Standard Farms Loin Baby Back Ribs, 1-3/4 to 2 lb. size. Membrane on the inner (stomach) side removed. All excess fat trimmed.

1/4 c. sugar
1/4 c. non-iodized table salt
1/8 c. brown sugar *
4 tsp. chili powder
2 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. Accent (MSG)
1 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 tsp. black pepper, freshly ground
1 tsp. granulated garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder

*Dried out lightly by exposing on cookie sheet room temp, several hours, or in slightly warmed oven.

5 parts KC Masterpiece to 1 part Honey

Sprinkle meat two hours before cooking with rub and allow meat to come to room temperature. Do not over season. A good overall dusting of the spices is all that's needed. The spices will become a nice red, liquid coating after sitting for about an hour, if you used the proper amount.

Smoke ribs in a "water pan" smoker, i.e. Brinkmann or Weber "Smokey Mountain Cooker" (the best!). Start charcoal (10-15 lbs.) and 4 chunks of white oak and 2 chunks of cherry wood (about the size of a tennis ball) at least 1 hour before cooking meat. All fuel should be started in a chimney-style starter, no starter fluid, and all must be gray/white hot. Remove all bark from wood chunks, do not soak.

Use straight water in the water pan and keep full during the entire cooking process. Control oven temperature of cooker by regulating the bottom vents only. Never, ever completely close the top vent! If you don't have one, put a thermometer on your cooker. Cook ribs for 3 hours fairly cool at 225F on rib racks. After 3 hours lift the lid for the first time, flip the slabs end for end, and upside down, and open all the vents on the smoker wide open.

Temperature of the cooker should rise into the 250-275F range. Peek every half hour to monitor doneness. Ribs will be finished when fairly brown in color and the meat has pulled down the long bones at least 3/4 of an inch (usually another 1 to 2 hours). Remove from cooker and sauce both sides before cutting individual ribs.

I like K.C. Masterpiece sweetened even more (5 parts sauce, 1 part honey)




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