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St Louis Ribs, a la Texas Roadhouse

BotchBotch Posts: 6,876
Texas Roadhouse is a chain that are throughout Texas, Oklahoma and they came to utard a few years ago (don't know where else), standard steakhouse/barbeque place.  Last weekend the chef from the local franchise was on the news and showed how TR do their ribs: they place them on a pan with a cup of water, sealed tightly with foil, then baked in an oven at 350F for two hours, then finished up on the grill with smoke.  The unique step, though, is he insisted the ribs be chilled overnight after the steaming, before the grilling, or else they'd fall apart.  I thought I'd give it a try (I know this sounds very close to boiling your ribs, I hope I'm not banninated and poked with sharp sticks).   =)
 
This is how they looked coming out of the oven:
 

 
Meat looked fully cooked and the bones were poking out nicely, but dayam what a sickly color.  The smell reminded me of barbeque at home; Dad would cook ribs over charcoal/gasoline in the summer, and in the winter Mom had an electric rotisserie that she'd "grill" ribs in, same smell!  (took Mom an hour to clean that damn thing afterwards)
 
Here's one disadvantage:
 

 
That's gonna be a pain to clean up, that pan only fits in the sink half at a time!  
 
Had to show off my new Victorinox scimitar (actually bought it to slice brisket):
 

 
Had them on the grill maybe 20 minutes, flipped once as I cooked them direct.  I gotta admit, the texture of the meat was damn perfect, just the perfect amount of chew (for my tastes, of course).  The meat did pick up some smoke flavor, but it didn't seem to permeate the meat (and this may be my imagination); no smoke ring at all, of course.  The jar of sauce I thought was in the frig was actually salsa, so I had these ribs dry.  DP's Red Eye Express sprinkled on, flavor was great (will sprinkle the rub on out of the oven next time, I waited until today and it didn't stick to the refrigerated meat very well).  
If there's a next time; an interesting technique but it requires planning ahead, space in the frig, and how long it takes me to clean that damn sheet.  It was also interesting taking that sheet out of the oven last night, full of boiling grease, and keeping it level (a couple beers may have been involved also).  
Thanks for looking!  
_____________________________________________
 
Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
 
Ogden, Utard.  

Comments

  • Yep.

    I worked at Texas Roadhouse during college. I use a similar method I always fall back on (I put the water under a grate in a pan and foil the top for steaming)

    They are ugly coming out but slap some bbq sauce and let it caramelize on a hot grill and it works. Especially if you are serving a ton at a time and lack grill space.

    "Brought to you by bourbon, bacon, and a series of questionable life decisions."

    South of Nashville, TN

  • GrillSgtGrillSgt Posts: 2,261
    edited June 2017
    Texas Roadhouse was founded and headquartered in Louisville KY.
    Woodford & Barren Co. KY

    LBGE, XLBGE, Smobot, 2 Weber Genesis, Weber 22" kettle

    I’d kill for a Nobel Peace Prize

  • Foil pan.
    Gittin' there...
  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,301
    I've seen recipes many times for boiling ribs, then grilling them to get a char, which sure does sound very similar to this technique.  I've never tried it because I'm just positive I won't like them as well as ribs that have been smoking for a few hours in actual wood smoke.  Boiled-then-grilled sounds like a great way to get some pretty good ribs for people who can't smoke them, though.

    @Botch, you didn't say how these compared to ribs you've cooked however you usually cook ribs, which I assume was smoking them?
  • BotchBotch Posts: 6,876
    Theophan said:
    @Botch, you didn't say how these compared to ribs you've cooked however you usually cook ribs, which I assume was smoking them?
    Texture was as good as I've made, flavor not so much.  I'm still trying different techniques, haven't found one I'm totally happy with yet.  Closest have been raised indirect at 225 (smoking, not grilling) for 5 hours or so, I leave sauce off more times than not.  
    _____________________________________________
     
    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • GaryLangeGaryLange Posts: 381
    I watch Robert Irvine put the Ribs in the oven with Saran wrap over them and cook them then grill them for the char. Must be a similar idea!

  • TN_Sister_StateTN_Sister_State Posts: 1,130
    This is how my brother always cooked his at his apt in Texas. 
    Franklin, Tn
    LBGE - Cast Iron Grate - Flameboss 300 - BGEtisserie

  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 9,969
    They look great. My BIL manages another similar restaurant and they do them the exact same way. I always assumed they cooked them in advance just for logistics and timing but it makes sense that it also keeps them from falling apart. 

    I have done them in the oven many times pre-egg days and I never had that issue with the crusty pan. I cooked at a lower temp for longer. I believe it was 250 for about 3 hours. 


    Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 

  • TheophanTheophan Posts: 2,301
    Botch said:
    Texture was as good as I've made, flavor not so much.  I'm still trying different techniques, haven't found one I'm totally happy with yet.  Closest have been raised indirect at 225 (smoking, not grilling) for 5 hours or so, I leave sauce off more times than not.  
    I love what you apparently have liked the best so far, or very similar.  I smoke them at 250°-275°, usually, till they're tender, no foiling, and I LOVE them that way!  I've often made them with no sauce, but once I tried the bourbon BBQ sauce in the Smoke & Spice book, that's what I do the most.  I LOVE THAT STUFF!  :)  Just last night I tried a baby back recipe from Steve Raichlen's Barbecue Bible with Filipino seasonings and a Chinese duck sauce for the glaze, and it was really good.  But I think my favorite, at least so far, is that "Bour-BQ Sauce" one.  Like you, though, I keep trying different things, just for a change.  The next ones on my list are from the Smoke & Spice book again.  We'll see.

    Thanks for sharing your experience with this really unusual technique!
  • StillH2OEggerStillH2OEgger Posts: 2,045

    I have done them in the oven many times pre-egg days and I never had that issue with the crusty pan. I cooked at a lower temp for longer. I believe it was 250 for about 3 hours. 
    I did this method back in the day and finished on the gasser and they turned out pretty good.
    Stillwater, MN
  • Ok @botch I am back by my stuff now so here is what we did at Texas and Logans Roadhouse. 

    Take the long DEEP pan like this (actual pan)...put the metal racks in the bottom. Put some water and a little liquid smoke in. Not enough to touch any meat. 

    Then toss in as many full racks as you can fit. Cover in foil. Set temp to 250. 3 hours. (Higher and faster if we were running low) Coat with sauce, toss on the hot grill for a little bit. 

    Makes the clean up much easier. The liquid smoke gives them the more natural "grilled" flavor. 

    "Brought to you by bourbon, bacon, and a series of questionable life decisions."

    South of Nashville, TN

  • BotchBotch Posts: 6,876
    I have done them in the oven many times pre-egg days and I never had that issue with the crusty pan. I cooked at a lower temp for longer. I believe it was 250 for about 3 hours. 
    First, I have to admit I skimped a bit; I have an extra-wide roll of heavy-duty Reynold's Wrap that looked wide enough to stretch "the long way" across my sheet pan.  It didn't, with the height of the ribs, so I didn't have a totally tight seal to keep the cup of water from totally evaporating (my Dad grew up in Depression-era Iowa, so I've been drilled to skimp (but I refuse to squeeze out the last bit of toothpaste with a bench vice anymore!))
    Secondly, I balanced the sheet pan across my sink and was able to soak it, and even empty it mostly into the garbage disposal, so the cleanup wasn't too bad. =)  
    _____________________________________________
     
    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • sloveladslovelad Posts: 1,741
    When I did my sous vide ribs and buy them in the fridge after, they were perfect. There is something to it 
  • NPHuskerFLNPHuskerFL Posts: 17,174
    Just a tip. Line your pan, regardless of size, in parchment and your cleanup is pretty much nil.  
    I work in Texas Roadhouse for their HVAC/R maint & repairs. There is a little more to the rib cook than they divulged. But, purdy damn close :wink:
    LBGE 2013 & MM 2014
    Die Hard HUSKER & BRONCO FAN
    Flying Low & Slow in "Da Burg" FL
  • BotchBotch Posts: 6,876
    There is a little more to the rib cook than they divulged. But, purdy damn close :wink:
    So, if I raise some funds via Kickstarter, how much will be required?   :D
    _____________________________________________
     
    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • sloveladslovelad Posts: 1,741
    Just a tip. Line your pan, regardless of size, in parchment and your cleanup is pretty much nil.  
    I work in Texas Roadhouse for their HVAC/R maint & repairs. There is a little more to the rib cook than they divulged. But, purdy damn close :wink:
    @NPHuskerFL that's how we will steal franklins secrets... surely he needs some a/c repair?
  • YukonRonYukonRon Posts: 13,208
    I have had the TR ribs. In fact, there are not too many national chains, which serve ribs, I have not tried.
    IMO, it is impossible to beat what we cook on the BGE.
    Ribs are amongst my most favorite of all food. I just will not order ribs, whenever I am out, since I have owned a BGE.
    @Botch you are a far better man than I, in so many ways. That should be obvious without even saying.
    I would never have the interest or the courage to try, with a rack of ribs, to beat what I already know, the best ribs I have ever cooked and tasted.
    I appreciate the work and investigation as well as the report, very much. 
    "Knowledge is Good" - Emil Faber

    XL and MM
    Louisville, Kentucky
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