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Ribs - 1, Botch - 0. Again.

BotchBotch Posts: 6,872
edited August 2017 in EggHead Forum
I am really, really getting fed up/frustrated with my inability to do a rack of ribs.  :anguished:
 
Box was clean.  New Royal Oak.  Stabilized to 250, clear smoke.  Raised Indirect.  One rack of St. Louis, cut in half to fit the Large better.  Checked them at 4 hours, no protruding bones and didn't bend at all when picked up.  Went another hour, still the same, I cut a rib off the end and sampled; dry, leathery.  Pulled them, cut them up, and they could be choked down when drenched in sauce (which I don't like).  Will probably toss the rest of them.  Again.  
 
I give up.    
_____________________________________________
 
Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
 
Ogden, Utard.  
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Comments

  • Sorry man. Do you have same issues with babybacks?  I tend to do better with them personally. 

    Little Rock, AR

  • WolfpackWolfpack Posts: 2,804
    edited August 2017
    With a half rack i don't think the bend test works the same. But I agree, probably needed more time. Did they still have a lot of bite (stuck to the bone)?

    nothing more frustrating that spending all afternoon cooking to be disappointed. Sorry it didn't work out. 
    Greensboro, NC
  • shtgunal3shtgunal3 Posts: 4,050
    Ribs are nemesis too. Let me know if you figure them out.

    ___________________________________

     

     LBGE,SBGE, and a Mini makes three......Sweet home Alabama........ Stay thirsty my friends .

  • epcotisbestepcotisbest Posts: 2,035
    I like experimenting and this was my effort last week. So very good and so very tasty, but most important, delicious. If I can make them turn out like this, you can too!

    http://eggheadforum.com/discussion/1207847/turbo-ribs-1-25-1-25-i-may-never-cook-low-and-slow-ribs-again
  • C'mon, Botch! You got this. I think you pulled them early but just keep on trying. I am new rib convert because they are done in 5 hours or so. Great news is they are fairly cheap and you don't have to stay up all night to cook them. Get back on the horse this week and try again. FYI- I have a large and can fit a whole rack of spares laid flat. I never cut them down but you should be able to with no quality issues
    1- LGBE
    1- KBQ C-60 (The Dishwasher)
    I- Blackstone 36" Griddle
    1- Sweet-A$$ Roccbox Pizza Oven
    1-Very Understanding and Forgiving Wife
  • JNDATHPJNDATHP Posts: 319
    I like to cook spare ribs at 275 for 3 hours and then another hour double wrapped in butcher pink. I check them at 3 hours and may shorten or lengthen the wrapped time depending on doneness.  
    Michael
    Large BGE
    Reno, NV
  • Hans61Hans61 Posts: 3,531
    do 321
    “There are three rules that I live by: never get less than twelve hours sleep; never play cards with a guy who has the same first name as a city; and never get involved with a woman with a tattoo of a dagger on her body.”
    Coach Finstock Teen Wolf
  • DoubleEggerDoubleEgger Posts: 13,533
    Spares are as easy as 3-2-1
  • SciAggieSciAggie Posts: 3,726
    I agree with the others that you probably pulled too early. I often don't wrap my ribs but when I do it's for just an hour or so or they get overly tender for me. (I'm talking about St. Louis style by the way)
    Coleman, Texas
    Large BGE & Mini Max for the wok. A few old camp Dutch ovens and a wood fired oven.
    "Bourbon slushies. Sure you can cook on the BGE without them, but why would you?"
                                                                                                                          YukonRon
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 17,965
    All I will offer is "toothpick test" for the win-full racks, half racks or any pair or more of ribs.  A no fail method as mentioned above.  Back on the horse and go with the 'pick.  You will be rewarded.  
    Louisville;  L & S BGEs, PBC, Lang 36; Burnin' wood in the neighbourhood. # 38 for the win.  Life is too short for light/lite beer.  
  • shtgunal3shtgunal3 Posts: 4,050
    What dome temp do you 3-2-1 guys go with?

    ___________________________________

     

     LBGE,SBGE, and a Mini makes three......Sweet home Alabama........ Stay thirsty my friends .

  • Jcl5150Jcl5150 Posts: 92
    Maybe try a drip pan filled with apple juice or water or something and leave them on a bit longer?  I did three racks of baby backs today at about 300 for three hours and had a drip pan filled with apple juice and they were about falling off the bone (IT of about 200) when I took them off.
  • ChillyWillisChillyWillis Posts: 887
    edited August 2017
    Jcl5150 said:
    Maybe try a drip pan filled with apple juice or water or something and leave them on a bit longer?  I did three racks of baby backs today at about 300 for three hours and had a drip pan filled with apple juice and they were about falling off the bone (IT of about 200) when I took them off.
    I'd recommend against a drip pan with liquid in it when using the egg. The liquid acts as a heat sink, and when it evaporates you will get a temperature spike that can be a b!tch to bring back down. Personally I don't bother wrapping ribs on the egg either, but that's just my preference 
  • Photo EggPhoto Egg Posts: 8,390
    I think you are just messing with us.lol
    Thank you,
    Darian

    Galveston Texas
  • FockerFocker Posts: 8,364
    edited August 2017
    Ride it 'til toothpick tender.
    I've had meaty spares go as long as 8 hours at 225 once.
    They're done when they're done.
    Babybacks are more predictable in the 4 to 5 hour window.
    Spares are a different animal, well not really, better all around though IMO.

    Dust yourself off, regroup, get back on the horse.

    Brandon
    Quad Cities
    "If yer gonna denigrate, familiarity with the subject is helpful."

  • Jcl5150Jcl5150 Posts: 92
    Jcl5150 said:
    Maybe try a drip pan filled with apple juice or water or something and leave them on a bit longer?  I did three racks of baby backs today at about 300 for three hours and had a drip pan filled with apple juice and they were about falling off the bone (IT of about 200) when I took them off.
    I'd recommend against a drip pan with liquid in it when using the egg. The liquid acts as a heat sink, and when it evaporates you will get a temperature spike that can be a b!tch to bring back down. Personally I don't bother wrapping ribs on the egg either, but that's just my preference 
    I've always used a drip pan with liquid and never had a problem holding temps.  I've never had all the liquid totally evaporate, though.
  • Ozzie_IsaacOzzie_Isaac Posts: 9,110
    Maybe you don't like ribs?  That is my excuse for never succeeding with brisket.
    If it is worth doing, it is worth overdoing.

    XL, Medium, Minimax, Mini, Blackstone, WSM
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,770
    Sounds like you didn't go long enough with them. St Louis are usually 5 1/2 - 6 hours for me at 250. Maybe try using the toothpick test to test for doneness. That has proved a foolproof way to test the ribs for me. Also, I like to wrap the sides of my cooking grate with aluminum foil when I'm doing ribs in my large, that way I don't have to cut my rack in half to avoid scorching the end ribs. 
    This. I'm too lazy to do 3-2-1 or variations of that method. I usually run them at 275 or so indirect, and they take about 5ish hrs.  

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • lkapigianlkapigian Posts: 4,048
    Like everything else's here, the ribs drive the cook, if doing them naked and a moderate temp,  just need more time ...I'm in the foil camp not really based on time, but when I have the color i lime, they get wrapped 
    Visalia, Ca
  • BotchBotch Posts: 6,872
    Maybe you don't like ribs?  That is my excuse for never succeeding with brisket.
    Here's what's odd:  I've only had one failed brisket in 25 or so years, and it was a bad piece of meat.
     
    I'm surprised so many of you (and THANK YOU for the comments!) thought I pulled them too early; I know that beef brisket is dry and tough if pulled too early ( the collagen ain't yet melted) but pork ribs don't have a lot of collagen, just fat and juice, right?
    Only one bone was protruding when I pulled them.  I grabbed my chef's knife instead of my usual serrated knife, the blade "caught" on the tough, leathery surface and pulled all the meat cleanly off the bone, the interior meat was fall-apart but dry as hell (ate most of it with a spoon, I'm not kidding).  It was nasty.
    I'm glad its now tomato season, I'll probably be eating just gazpacho for the next month (and need to lose some weight anyway, usually lose 10-12 lbs every August).  Probably won't be trying ribs again for a long, long time.  
    _____________________________________________
     
    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • If I may be a total nerd/a-hole and chime in here, many thanks.   I also had issues with ribs in the past. 

    Based on trials and tribulations, and armed with research tested in my little backyard lab, I have a working theory that has served me well.  On ribs, at least.

    Ribs are basically a huge flat chunk of meat that has plenty of surface area and not much volume.  As such, they're a perfect shape for dehydration.

    Backing up here, if I may.  They have A LOT of connective tissue.  This is important in a cow, or person, as the ribs keep the guts protected.

    Fun fact: collagen needs moisture to break down into gelatin.

    Depending on the thickness and fat cap on ribs, you can dehydrate them if you're doing a "I'm a badass and cooking these ribs 1-0-0 method".  Cooking them without a braise step is fine and dandy to your buddies on the forum, but you need access and $$$ to buy the sh!t.  The sh!t is thick, high quality, fatty ribs. 

    What most of us plebeians buy is thin, and/or lean ribs.  These turn into jerky before the connective tissue melts into collagen. 

    In summation of everything above, you can be a bad m-fer and smoke them through and through if you have the temp dialed in.  This means you smoke to the stall, then crank it up past it, and take 'em off when they're done.  This sounds easy, and it is if you have thick, fatty ribs.  But when you have thin, lean ribs, it ain't.

    So the solution is to braise (AKA "foil") when you'd usually be in the stall (160F - 180F roundabouts). 

    Plenty of other solutions, like cook in a 100% humid environment, not that anyone has that kind of equipment, but the summary I put out here is buy fatty, thick ribs or moderate your cooking to accommodate NOT dehydrating the meat so the conversion of connective tissue to delicious gelatin progresses.

    If that means putting the ribs in foil with liquid (braise) like a sissy, so be it. The end product is the goal, not how you got there.





     


    I think you are right. 

    Little Rock, AR

  • YukonRonYukonRon Posts: 13,200
    edited August 2017
    250 indirect, toothpick. Sauce, if desired, for 30 mins while egg is shut down.
    Don't give up. Ribs off the BGE are the best. 
    "Knowledge is Good" - Emil Faber

    XL and MM
    Louisville, Kentucky
  • bgebrentbgebrent Posts: 17,481
    I'm with Nola.  Some time in foil with a little liquid to braise makes a big difference.  I also believe you pulled them too soon.
    Sandy Springs & Dawsonville Ga
  • EoinEoin Posts: 2,017
    The ribs we get here tend to be on the thin side, so I use a wet mix to coat them at the start (mustard, apple juice, spices, S & P, sugar / syrup) and run them low for a couple of hours until the surface has properly dried out. Then foil with a splash of apple juice / vinegar to braise them, bump the temperature to 325 and run until they pass the toothpick test. I have done a final unwrapped stage in the past, but don't find a lot of benefit from this, they usually get finished in the foil. Toothpick test FTW.
  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 9,968
    I agree that if you are struggling with them it is time to try a foil stage. Cook at 250-275 for 3 hours then foil for an hour and check on them. 


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

  • henapplehenapple Posts: 15,986
    shtgunal3 said:
    What dome temp do you 3-2-1 guys go with?

    I'm always around 230-240. Dot let them stay in the foil too long. Check them after an hour or so. 

    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • FockerFocker Posts: 8,364
    The braise is critical on deer ribs, which are lighter and leaner.
    Brandon
    Quad Cities
    "If yer gonna denigrate, familiarity with the subject is helpful."

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