I have spent the past two weeks in a pork induced haze brought about by extreme over consumption of country style ribs. My children were frightened but well fed.
It is only now that I have the ability to reflect on the recent madness and to document to the best of my ability the evolution of this porcine debauchery. This all started with a comment on The Texas BBQ Forum that pork injected with peach juice was pretty tasty. It was downhill from there. The pictures in the post are from three separate cooks where I experimented with different techniques. Here is my final recipe and technique.
All of the cooks utilized country style ribs that were actually strips of boneless pork butt.
Coat the pork on all sides with the following rub:
- 8 Tbls Turbinado sugar
- 3 Tbls kosher salt
- 2 Tbls paprika
- 1 Tbls chili powder
- 1 Tbls lemon pepper seasoning
Allow the rubbed pork to rest at room temperature for 20-30 minutes or until the rub has dissolved into the meat and you get something that looks as awesome as this:
Cook the country style ribs on your Weber kettle with indirect heat and a split of hickory or pecan. I found the exact temperature was not that important. One cook was at 275F for a little over three hours, another was at 325 F for an hour and a half. A third cook started at 300F but I got tied up with weekend chores and when I came back two hours later my kettle was running at 400F. The ribs from the last cook were a little on the dry side but I still classified them as delicious.
The temperature of the kettle isn’t what is critical. These are strips of pork butt which is about the most forgiving cut of pork around. Focus upon tenderness of the ribs. These guys are done when a toothpick slides easily into the meat. Coincidentally this will happen when the meat hits an internal temp of around 180F.
After I put the ribs on the kettle I didn’t touch them until the rub had set and had turned a beautiful reddish brown.
Once the color was reached I hit the ribs with a hot peach glaze. I painted the ribs and let the glaze set for about 15 minutes then I did it again. I made the glaze by mixing a quarter cup of Peach Nectar with one cup of Peach Preserves and heating until the mix was liquefied and foaming. The Peach Nectar is actually a blend of apple juice and peach juice. I couldn’t find straight peach juice anywhere.
The glaze worked like magic with the pork. The smell of the pork fat, smoke and peach preserves was almost obscene. The glaze made the ribs take on a beautiful peach colored shine. I was snapping pictures like an idiot. I have a hard time explaining this to my kids.
They were delicious. I wish I could share this bite with you!
In addition to putting on a few pounds I also learned a few things in this adventure. The first is that brining this type of country style rib is an absolute waste of time. The second is to always read labels very carefully.
My first attempt involved brining the country style ribs in salted peach nectar overnight. The next day they were an ugly gray color. It turns out that my “All Natural, 100% Juice” product had been preserved with ascorbic acid. Soaking meat in an acidic solution overnight is not a good idea.
I went ahead and cooked these up but really couldn’t tell any difference from another batch of country style ribs that I didn’t brine. The non-brined ribs were just as juicy and tender as the brined ribs. Again, since I was dealing with slices of pork butt this really wasn’t too surprising.
I hope you enjoyed this post. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments!
By David Somerville