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Author Topic: Hellava time cooking ribs...  (Read 8227 times)

Offline BigRich

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Hellava time cooking ribs...
« on: January 14, 2014, 04:21:52 PM »
I can't seem to get these spare ribs to come out right.  They're usually over done but the last batch was both.  One rack was under and the other was over.  The only thing I do different that ten point, that I've figured out, is that I boat the ribs instead of using aluminum foil.

My buddy and I are cooking for our friends Super Bowl Sunday.  Him on his horizontal off set smoker and me on the Bradley. I'll be smoking a few more racks before then to be sure I kick his az. 

I'm going to post those smokes here and hope that you guys can pick up on what the problem is.  Otherwise, I'll have to tell him, in front of our friends, that his smoker is better then mine.  You know that's not going to go over well with me.
« Last Edit: January 14, 2014, 04:46:25 PM by BigRich »

Offline STLstyle

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #1 on: January 14, 2014, 04:33:29 PM »
A lot of times for me the variance in doneness is caused by rib position in smoker and size differential of the ribs.  Rarely are they exactly the same size.  Don't be scared to rotate them consistently and pull them out individually as they all aren't going to finish at the same time.   I look forward to seeing your posts I'm sure everyone will help out as much they can. 

Good luck!


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Offline Saber 4

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #2 on: January 14, 2014, 05:48:21 PM »
I seem to be the only one on here that does my ribs without foiling or boating, I like to marinate mine in a mixture apple juice, soy sauce and garlic overnight, then I take them out pat them dry and put on a spicy dry rub while the Bradley is warming up. I smoke at 220 for 2-3 hours starting with the ribs bone side down on the racks, I rotate the racks and flip the ribs at 2 hours and every couple of hours until they are done by look and using the skewer test I learned here. So far, knock on wood I haven't had a failure yet and the ribs go fast with everyone eating more than they normally eat.

Offline KyNola

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #3 on: January 14, 2014, 06:02:07 PM »
Without knowing what you are doing, as in how you are cooking them, it is going to be hard for us to help you.  Another question is "what do you consider ribs to be done?".  Fall off the bone? Over done for me.  Nice bite with a gentle tug and a clean bone left behind?  Perfectly done for me.

You're going to need to help us help you.

Offline Saber 4

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #4 on: January 14, 2014, 06:12:44 PM »
Without knowing what you are doing, as in how you are cooking them, it is going to be hard for us to help you.  Another question is "what do you consider ribs to be done?".  Fall off the bone? Over done for me.  Nice bite with a gentle tug and a clean bone left behind?  Perfectly done for me.

You're going to need to help us help you.

X2

Offline STLstyle

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #5 on: January 14, 2014, 06:12:48 PM »

Without knowing what you are doing, as in how you are cooking them, it is going to be hard for us to help you.  Another question is "what do you consider ribs to be done?".  Fall off the bone? Over done for me.  Nice bite with a gentle tug and a clean bone left behind?  Perfectly done for me.

You're going to need to help us help you.

Yep.  X2.  If you take some tongs and bend the slab back over itself and they start to come apart = perfect for me.  Pay attention to what they feel like as compared to how you like them and you can repeat time and time again.

Saber, I don't foil my ribs every time anymore either.  Sometimes too lazy and I can get results I want without.  Just did 2 racks no foil yesterday in fact.


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Offline Saber 4

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #6 on: January 14, 2014, 06:14:16 PM »


Saber, I don't foil my ribs every time anymore either.  Sometimes too lazy and I can get results I want without.  Just did 2 racks no foil yesterday in fact.

Glad to hear I'm not alone in the wilderness on ribs anymore. ;)

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #7 on: January 15, 2014, 02:38:09 AM »
I also find that each rack has it's own characteristics, and rarely do all my rack of ribs finish at the same time. I remove the finished ones and allow the others to continue to cook. In the Bradley rotating is very important. I use a bamboo skewer to test for doness. When it slides in and out with a very slight resistance they are bite off the bone tender, if they slide in and out with no resistance then they are fall off the bone.


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Offline TedEbear

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2014, 04:38:16 AM »
Foiling with apple juice or some other liquid is also called the Texas Crutch.  You'll find that this method is used in BBQ smoking competitions by the experts.  There must be something to it.

Anyway, try rotating the racks at least once during the smoking session to even out the doneness.

Offline STLstyle

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2014, 06:50:46 AM »

Foiling with apple juice or some other liquid is also called the Texas Crutch.  You'll find that this method is used in BBQ smoking competitions by the experts.  There must be something to it.

Anyway, try rotating the racks at least once during the smoking session to even out the doneness.

X2.  Although I believe this is mostly used for color (if you don't wrap your ribs they can get too dark for ideal appearance scores.  Judges like that mahogany color). Also to speed up the cooking process / moisture retention.  But you sacrifice the bark!  Can't have it both ways.  For my house, I'm leaning unwrapped as of lately...  Subject to change of course!  Looking forward to seeing some pics...





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Offline pondee

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #10 on: January 15, 2014, 10:02:10 AM »
So 3-2-1 can also be 3 hours smoke, 2 hours cook no smoke and 1 hour cook with sauce?  All at about 225*?

Offline Grouperman941

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #11 on: January 15, 2014, 01:36:52 PM »
So 3-2-1 can also be 3 hours smoke, 2 hours cook no smoke and 1 hour cook with sauce?  All at about 225*?

This is what I do. I like the texture better.
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Offline Pachanga

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #12 on: January 16, 2014, 02:53:43 AM »


Saber, I don't foil my ribs every time anymore either.  Sometimes too lazy and I can get results I want without.  Just did 2 racks no foil yesterday in fact.

Glad to hear I'm not alone in the wilderness on ribs anymore. ;)

x3

I us a very simple process for Saint Louis Cut or Spare Ribs.

Lay the ribs out for a while (still sealed) until they get closer to room temp.
Fire up the Bradley to preheat to 245 - 255 (the ribs will knock temp down) with half steam table pan full of boiling water to catch pucks
(I use a foil shield to push the temperature toward the middle of the Bradley and equalize front and back temps; no rack flipping))
Remove the membrane (I leave the flap)
Season liberally with rub on both sides
Slather with a thin layer of mustard slather mix of choice (think of it as a long term mop)
Bone side down on the second from the bottom rack
Smoke with apple at 220 - 230 rack temperature for 5 (optimistic) to 6 (close), maybe 7 hours (temp was too low)
4 hours minimum on smoke
If you like to mop, go a couple of rounds after the four hour mark when the bark has set.
When ribs start to bend when lifted in the middle with tongs and loosen up, check for done.

What is done?  For me the ribs need to still have a little tug from the bone.
When the ribs are limber, stick a fork between two bones; twist.  If the fibers have a little tug but still break apart easily, I pull them.
If you lift the middle with tongs and things start to fall apart, well for me, that's too much; still good but I am not a fall off the bone cowboy.  When I lift the middle with tongs and feel like they are about to break, they are out of there.  Loosely wrap in foil for a few minutes and serve.

If the bark is not as dry as you like or if you want to set a glaze, apply and put under a broiler for less than a minute on both sides.

6 - 0 - 0.  Simple. Works for me.  But to each his own.

Good luck and slow smoking,

Pachanga

« Last Edit: January 16, 2014, 06:34:43 AM by Pachanga »

Offline Saber 4

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #13 on: January 16, 2014, 09:35:43 AM »
Pachanga,

I'll have to try the mustard slather when I'm not marinating first, do you have a picture of your foil shield, I'm having a mental block on picturing how you would do it and I'm always interested in new tricks.

Thanks,
Robert

Offline Pachanga

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Re: Hellava time cooking ribs...
« Reply #14 on: January 16, 2014, 11:40:18 AM »
Pachanga,

I'll have to try the mustard slather when I'm not marinating first, do you have a picture of your foil shield, I'm having a mental block on picturing how you would do it and I'm always interested in new tricks.

Thanks,
Robert

I was afraid that would come up.  I don't have any real good photos but there is one in this post. 

http://forum.bradleysmoker.com/index.php?topic=12061.0

I have since modified this so that the foil is in a V with the point of the V looking straight at the door; the long point running parallel to the floor; right to left.  I use a crumpled up, folded over, half steam table foil pan now.  This way heat slides up the lower leg of the V and to the middle with drippings sliding down and toward the middle by depressing the top center foil leg of the V to funnel dripping to the center heat shield and vent hole.

I placed four rack probes in the Bradley before the shield to check for hot spots.  As would stand to reason, the rear of the Bradley was always much hotter than the door side; heat from the element takes the shortest route to the chimney.  Hence the heat shield.  It pushes heat toward the center; it rises, hits the meat dead center bottom, then deflects to the door, rear and sides more evenly.  This was verified by multiple rack probes.

I don't twist, flip or rotate except to move racks down as each lower rack is done.

This is not approved by Bradley and may be frowned on by others but it works for me with no problems for years now.  Do so at your own risk.  That should about cover the danger replies.

When the perpetual laziness wears off, I will weld something up more permanent.
Sorry I have not been more thorough in the explanation and photos.

Good luck and slow smoking,

Pachanga