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Direct Ribs

WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
edited 1:09AM in EggHead Forum
<p />I posted this the other night on a thread that was canned and seeing as how there's been a need for cooking related posts here as of late, I thought this might be a good time to repost. :~)[p]Ribs cooked direct.
I've always cooked them indirect and it seems most folks here do as well. My normal setup has been to cook them on a raised grill with a heat barrier of some sort inbetween until they are done.... no flipping or foil 'cause I'm lazy and don't want the hassle and feel the cooker should do most of the work.
After seeing awesome photos and reading djm5x9's countless cooks done direct and low & slow I felt it was time to give it a go.
The fire was stable at 210 with a few chunks of hickory.
One half rack was rubbed with Bonesmokers Rub mixed with brown sugar and cayenne. The other half was rubbed with Dizzy Dust and brown sugar.
The setup was the main grate attached to stainless steel bolt legs resting on the fire ring. A grill extender was attached to the main grate. The ribs cooked on the extender.
This setup allowed the ribs to cook "in the dome" utilizing the reflective heat of the preheated dome and the fire below.
They cooked for over four hours at a temp of 210-20 moving them around once to avoid potential hot spots and spritzed twice with apple juice. The last 20-30 minutes the temp cranked to 250.[p]In the end, they were served with no sauce and were moist, tender, smokey.......... and just plain killer.[p]Like I said..... I'm lazy and these were as easy and as good as any ribs cooked on my pit.
Lesson learned: I can cook ribs direct with little effort.[p]Darryl, beers to you for your incessant direct/lowslow cook tutorials on this board.[p]John


  • NewbieNewbie Posts: 33
    WooDoggies, these look awesome. Talk to us about applying the brown sugar with the Dizzy Dust....which goes on first, etc.? No flipping....very interesting. How long prior to the cook did you apply the dust/sugar? Thanks.
  • AronAron Posts: 170
    Those look incredible. Did you find the taste or texture any different than when you do them indirect?
    It is nice to know that there's more than one way to get ribs that look like that. I've only made ribs once so far, indirect, and they were great. Next time, perhaps I'll try the direct route to compare for myself.

  • CornfedCornfed Posts: 1,324
    WooDoggies,[p]Very, very nice! I do almost all of my ribs direct now, though I haven't cook any in too long. This weekend, though...[p]Later,

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    Newbie,[p]I had about a quarter bottle of Dizzy Dust left and added the brown sugar to the bottle to fill to the halfway mark, shook up well and then dusted the ribs about 30 minutes before they went on the cooker.... so a 50/50 mix.... makes your Dust last a lot longer that way as well. [p]Beers!

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    Aron,[p]I could not tell a discernable difference in taste and texture between direct and indirect.
    Just keep an eye on them toward the very end of the cook.... I tweaked the bottom vent just a touch and it jumped to 250 when I wasn't looking..... caught just in time!

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    Cornfed,[p]My goal is to make ribs as good as Qfan's from last year's eggfest.........hopefully he'll be there this year so's I can snitch some more of his most bodacious spares.[p]Heee!

  • Nature BoyNature Boy Posts: 8,407
    Last longer???[p]I thought the instructions said "wash, rinse, repeat"?? They left that out?[p]Hee
    My bizzare humor. Sorry.
    Twitter: @dizzypigbbq
    Facebook: Dizzy Pig Seasonings
  • NewbieNewbie Posts: 33
    WooDoggies, and the brown sugar carmelizes at some point? Are the Dizzy Dust ribs the ones pictured on the left? Thx.
  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    Newbie,[p]Yes, the sugar does carmelize. I suspect a good bit of the browning happened the last 30 or so minutes when the temps went high without my noticing.... tho they turned out for the best .... any longer, and they would have begun to dry out and char.[p]The Dizzy Ribs are the ones on the right..... and the key is, as Chris stated, is to coat, wash and rinse, coat wash and rinse several times to get that great bark... ;~)[p]Big large beers![p][p]

  • StumpBabyStumpBaby Posts: 320
    WooDoggies,[p]Wow..dem wibs is lookin real day was tasty as all get out :)[p]I only gots a simple single single (did I say that twice..did I say that twice) question tho..since I got a medium size (and don't spread that around...I'm not proud ) I'm sorta limited by the amount of meat I can cook with an indirect setup, cause what hangs over the drip pan will burn like a wad of bengay on an I'm figuring (with all I got..and yes..I smell somethin burnin)..that if'n I was to do that there direct setup..the amount of meat I can cook'll be more..cause I ain't gonna worry none about that burning problem (the one described above..the others..well..that's prolly best for a different forum). [p]So's the question goes like you gots to worry bout the size of the fire you build if'n it's a direct setup ? I typically cook wibs for 5 hours or so..the 3+1+1 know..foil'n all..but to do that, and since it's an indirect cook, I load up the lump pretty high, cause it don't cause no problems wid da burnin..but will I have a problem if'n I cook direct, and yet still fill the darn thing up to the top-o the firebox..or should I back off a little and not throw too much lump in there, so the fire isn't so high up?[p]Have a happy day![p]StumpBaby

  • Mike in MNMike in MN Posts: 546
    Nature Boy,
    What in the world are we talking about here? Or should I just wait for the care package?[p]Mike in MN

  • Prof DanProf Dan Posts: 339
    WooDoggies,[p]I gotta try this your way. I am very lazy, but I like my ribs to be tender and moist. I've been doing it the GFW 3/1/1 indirect way. It's a lot of work, but I thought it was worth it.[p]But 210 for four hours direct? That's about as easy as it gets. Congratulations! [p]

  • Tim MTim M Posts: 2,410
    WooDoggies,[p]"and the key is, as Chris stated, is to coat, wash and rinse, coat wash and rinse several times to get that great bark... ;~)"[p]It early - this is a joke, right? If not, what do you mean by wash, rinse and repeat?[p]Tim
  • TRexTRex Posts: 2,709
    Tim M,[p]I'm glad you asked the question - I thought I was the only one sitting here wiping the sleep out of my eyes going, "Huh?"[p]Sounds like shampoo instructions to me.[p]TRex
  • WooDoggies,[p]now how am i going to explain to my compay IT guys why there is a big bite out of the corner of my laptop and slobber marks all over the screen?!!?!?! :). .. damn, those look good. . . .

  • Tim MTim M Posts: 2,410
    TRex,[p]I think that is correct. I once posted to Chris that his directions on the bottle should include that phrase - one way to get people to use up the stuff and find the need to order more. [p]The coffee is starting to kick in now.[p]Tim
  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    TRex,[p]Yeah fellas, it's meant as a joke in response to Chris's post below saying, "Last Longer???!", that was in response to my suggestion that you could make the Dizzy Dust last longer with sugar. Confused yet?[p]Short answer: Absolutely do not wash, rinse, repeat.... soap and water is bad for ribs![p]Sorry for any mixup. :~)[p]John

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    Stumpy,[p]Yes, is the short answer. :~)[p]For a slow direct cook, I want to put as much distance between the ribs and the fire as is possible without having to refill the firebox..... so that means building a small fire that has enough lump to last the entire cook.[p]The minimum amount of lump for a clean burn is a level 1 or 2 inches above the holes in the firebox.... that amount a should be more than enough to cook your ribs. So, before adding the meat, start the fire small and build up slowly to the target temp. If it initially burns too hot too quickly, a good bit of fuel will be spent and you will have an overly hot cooker to contend with... so it pays to be careful.[p]Use a raised grid to put the meat into the dome and keep the temp low low low. The ceramic will absorb the heat and reflect it back so the meat will cook evenly.... so no need to get the fire too hot or you will toast your ribs.... the key being to keep the temp low from the git go. Did I say Low?
    Also, you may want to keep the ribs from getting too close or touching the ceramic wall as the heat tends to circulate up the walls.
    Hope this answers your single single question.
    Gotta go!

  • Nature Boy,
    Hi Chris--I was wondering if you got my e-mail about buying some of your new rubs? I've got a few of my friends around here hooked on them now, so the orders should start coming in soon. See-Yaa

  • Nature BoyNature Boy Posts: 8,407
    I did, thanks. Will respond soon.
    Twitter: @dizzypigbbq
    Facebook: Dizzy Pig Seasonings
  • sprintersprinter Posts: 1,188
    WooDoggies,[p]Good looking ribs, thanks for the pics.[p]I've been doing ribs direct almost since I got my egg years ago. I tried several methods of indirect/direct/combination etc. but finally ended up cooking direct with a rib rack at about 225-250 for as long as it takes, generally 4.5-6 hours. Sauce them the last 45 minutes or so and you have some pretty good eats.[p]Troy
  • KennyGKennyG Posts: 949
    <p />WooDoggies,[p]Ribs cooked direct? Hell, us forum geezers could have told ya about that years ago. Indirect and 3/1/1 simply takes too long and is too much hassle with no better results.[p]Here's todays lunch of direct ribs and rice. No pretty presentation here as yours truly way starving. I used my sample of Dizzy Dust Jamaican firewalk blended with the same amount of DD general purpose. This is a killer combo. The ribs were also brined a couple hours before the rub was applied and allowed to sit overnight.[p]BTW, if you do your direct cook on an extender or elevated additional grid raised up on bolts, You can run your temps at 260-270° and get the cook done in only 3 hours.[p]K~G[p][p]

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    KennyG,[p]"...could have told ya about that years ago..."[p]LOL, I'm well aware that direct cooked ribs are nothing new to the world of bbq but they are a nice rediscovery for me in the 3 1/2 years I've had my egg.[p]As for the indirect method taking too long, well I'm not sure I agree.... I don't mind the length of time involved as long as a quality product is the result....... and I think different techniques add their own unique fingerprint to a cook.
    So, maybe the results aren't always better but they are different.... and in learning the difference is where I learn about cooking.
    And it's the trying out of new techniques, sharing the food and what I've learned that I find rewarding.... hence my post. [p]Just another one of a thousand ways to skin a cat..... thanks for the help.[p]John[p]

  • WooDoggies,[p]I am trying to cook some ribs direct based on your narrative and the only thing that lost me was the stainless steel bolts and extension part. i have a big egg with a v rack. any chance of posting a picture of your grate set up. also, when yall refer to direct you still use a drip pan correct?[p]thanks in advance
  • KennyGKennyG Posts: 949
    John,[p]Having been a little too quick on the trigger on that previous post, I didn't include appropriate smile thingies.[p]I hope you realized that I was just funnin' ya for the most part!![p]As a perpetually frustrated student of ribs, I have tried every which way to cook them (multiple rigs) ranging from the Weber Kettle 75 minute recipe all the way to the 4/2/1.5/1/.5 method that someone once posted. I have never been entirely satisfied. Just when I thought I finally got them right, our old buddy BBQFan1 pulled those gems off a virgin Egg at Waldorf last year and I felt I was back at square one.[p]As you stated, there are many ways to skin a cat and I have simply standardized on a higher heat than most, direct cook.[p]Beers or liquor pops to ya, whichever is your preference.[p]Ken[p]

  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    atlegg,[p]Direct is usually in reference to cooks with nothing between the meat and the heat source.
    Indirect, the way I have normally done ribs, is with some sort of heat barrier between the two.... like a drip pan.
    So, no drip pan for that last rib cook.[p]Below is a link to a photo of Charcoal Mike's setup.... just like the one I used without the platesetter and drip pan. Back up through the link and most of your questions should be answered on how it's put together. I think I used 3" bolts which brings the main grate to just below the bottom lip of the opening. Some people use 1/2 split fire bricks that rest on the fire ring, instead of bolts, to raise the main grate.... and you could do the same for a 2nd grate if you didn't want to buy an extender.[p]Very simple cook with the bone side down the entire time on the cooker. I just put them on and let them be.[p]Good luck and have fun.... nearly beertime for me.[p]John

    [ul][li]Charcoal Mike's Doohickey[/ul]
  • WooDoggiesWooDoggies Posts: 2,390
    KennyG,[p]I'm glad you cleared that up as I was beginning to think you were dogging me for rediscovering the wheel! :~) (appropriate icon added)[p]Though I've had stellar ribs cooked for me with the foil method.... being lazy, I'm resigned to cook them bare, albeit direct or indirect...... til I get it right.[p]I'm curious about your high heat direct ribs.... I would be concerned that they wouldn't have enough time to get tender or render the fat and perhaps burn when you weren't looking in those 3 hours.
    Do you only use the brined ribs for that cook?
    What is it about that cook that makes it a standard for you?[p]An aside.... the virgin egg that Qfan cooked those ribs on went to my old friend Cap'n..... who is also on helluva cook![p]Beers for me please![p]John[p]

  • djm5x9djm5x9 Posts: 1,342
    John:[p]You are most welcome. Further down the thread there was mention of cooking at higher temperatures on the elevated grid. With care, this does work, but I just like the results of the low and slow better. Plus, to me the texture is more to my liking than those done indirect.[p]By the way, While in Memphis, I had a real "Q" disappointment. Walked out of the Duck Hotel and half a block up the alley to the "R" "Q" restaurant. The aroma of the cooking food and smoke in the air was enchanting. The food - pulled pork and ribs were disappointing at best . . . Well, the beer was good!
  • KennyGKennyG Posts: 949
    <p />WooDoggies,[p]I forgot to mention, I always brine them (90 min max) in the standard salt/sugar/water mix - picked this up from one of the cooking mags. I also flip them every 30 mins and change the front to back orientation at the same time. This may sound like a pain, but I just set a timer as a reminder.[p]Everyone has their favorite method and this one just seems to give me consistant, very good results with little effort. I'll never achieve great. BBQFan is still my hero.[p]I've had equally good, not great results doing large quantities of ribs in my metal rig at party time. It takes a lot of tending to use that beast and is literally a "ritual". The Egg has spoiled me big time.[p]

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