Article Digest: I didn't have the time to take pictures for this one. Recently, a local store was selling beef back ribs for less than a dollar a pound. In my area, that's a good deal. Unfortunately, when I got to the store I realized that most of the meat from the ribs was trimmed off. I picked the piece that had the most meat hanging off of it and set to work preparing it in the least troublesome manner, for hopefully a decent tasting return. Beef ribs are more meaty than pork ribs which tend to be tender and falling off the bone. If you like a strong flavor and hearty texture, then beef ribs are the way to go.
I started with two racks of about 6 or 7 beef back ribs each. I prepared a rub by tossing together two tablespoons of ground black pepper, a tablespoon of oregano, two teaspoons of cayenne pepper, and two teaspoons of celery salt. I then placed the ribs in two 9x13" baking pans and rubbed all the surfaces with the spices.
I then poured enough apple juice into each pan to cover the bottom by at least 1/4 inch. Covering each tightly with aluminum foil, I placed them onto a center rack in a 300°F oven.
I then let them bake for two hours.
After the two hours, I uncovered the ribs and let them bake for a few more minutes until the outside developed a slight char. You could also finish them over a grill, but I wanted the least amount of trouble and since the oven was hot, why not use that heat?
Using an 8 inch chef's knife, I cut between ribs which I held up vertically on a cutting board. I've served these plain with salt on the side as well as with barbeque sauce.
There is another trick for expedient ribs. To get them "fall off the bone tender" in a hurry try boiling them for 1 to 1.5 hours in salted water. Then grill them until the outside looks right. Add some sauce, and grill a little longer to thicken the sauce.
This will produce tender ribs in less than 2 hours.
Problem with boiling them is they lose all flavor. For best results, you first have to remove the back membrane and have your ribs marinate for about 24 hours in your favorite bbq sauce. They place them, covered, in the oven for 3 hours at 200o. The ribs will really get the taste of the sauce.
Once they're out of the oven, wait about an hour before broiling them a little on the bbq, with diamond marking for best results, and add some more sauce to cover it all. Restaurant-style perfect bbq ribs. Takes a little longer to prepare, but results will impress you!! You can also try liquid smoke if you want to add a little smokey taste.
Beef ribs are tough, but the quickest and tastiest way outside of a long, slow grilling or smoking, is to use a pressure cooker, followed by a grill or broiler.
I've marinated, and cooked them in the marinade under high pressure, then grilled. Or used storebought sauce in the pressure cooker, then grilled, with some extra slathering on of the sauce at the end of the grilling, making them in under an hour this way on a whim. Storebought bbq sauce is mostly sugar, which burns on the grill, so it can't really be basted on. But it only takes a little while at the end to put some color on the ribs.
Takes about 25 minutes under high pressure, just be careful that the meat doesn't slide off the bones while taking them out!
Steaming is much gentler than boiling. The flavors of the marinade penetrate, and the connective tissue breaks down under the high pressure and heat.
Also the quickest pot roast this side of the Mississippi. Whip up a 3lb pot roast in 45 minutes. Or a beef stew in 25, that tastes straight out of a crock pot. The wonders of pressure and a higher boiling point.
I agree with anonymous who said to marrinate, cover, and bake for 3 hours. I use a higher 250 degree oven, but the results are the same. After baking let them cool off (so they don't fall apart when you put them on the grill) and grill and slather with more sauce.
Everytime I make these for guests they are blown away.
Although this is meant for *pork* back ribs, it should still work for beef ones, if you're willing to cook it a little longer.
I also use straight apple juice, as the oil doesn't seem to help.
And while the other ingredients of the spice rub are optional and some may not be a good idea depending on your chosen sauce, the brown sugar is essential. You can rub it in until it completely "melts" just before cooking, if you don't want to do it ahead of time.
You could even brine the ribs before adding the rub to make them even better.
As the recipe says, it's amazing how much fat comes out of them and they don't lose any taste like boiling them or over grilling them causes. They litterally fall off the bone. It's time consuming, but worth it.
Your comments reminded me of the pressure cooker (still unused) that I was given last year as a gift after I had expressed interest in using one. I guess after reading some of the directiions and warnings that came with it I was a little intimidated and stowed it with the seldom used; I'd love to hear some practical advice from someone who uses a pressure cooker rather than the heebie-jeebie invoking technical directions that were provided. Thanks
Posted: Sat Apr 08, 2006 3:25 am Post subject: pressure cooker ribs
To the person who expressed interest in pressure cooking. Here's how to "boil" it down. I've used a pressure cooker since I was a kid and it's really not hard. Plus, the cookers of today are 100% safe. The secret: go to Kuhn Rikon's website - they make the very best cookers in the world. They have a very nice site full of pressure cooker recipes. But the gist of doing a stew or a braised-kinda meat dish is to do everything you would normally do - sautee the onions/garlic, in your favorite oily substrate, add the meat and brown as usual - right there in the pressure cooker. Deglaze as usual with your favorite deglazing agent (I'm partial to wine). Add either your mirepoix (carrots,onions,celery) or whatever your vegetable mixture, your spices and just put the lid on. For meat, I usually cook at the 2nd red ring (15 lbs pressure) for a set period of time per pound. There are charts on Kuhn Rikon's site. I can do a chicken in 30 minutes start to finish. There is no rocket science here - so be brave and bold and pull out your pressure cooker and GO!!! Oh, and the ribs, both pork and beef are the very best after doing in a pressure cooker.
Beef ribs need more that 3 hours of cooking to become completely 'fall off the bone' tender. Many different components of the postings need to be brought together for great ribs that do take all the time of BBQ pit cooking (smoker) but little of the maintenance.
Ribs should have the silverskin removed from the back, rubbed with a sugar based dry rub (including some salt, paprika, celery salt and cumin), refrigerated overnight, then slow cooked in the oven at about 225F for 4 hours (lightly baste with BBQ sauce after about 3 hours), then wrapped in foil and cooked for an additional 2 hours.
Long process but the refrigerator, then the oven, quietly do most of the work and the ribs basically melt.
Posted: Tue Feb 20, 2007 12:08 am Post subject: Loved it.
I had purchased some baby back pork ribs at the store just because they were on sale. Although I'll smoke a turkey on my Webber kettle, my effort at keeping a slow fire going for 6 hours for brisket failed miserably. So, although I suspected that there's no real substitute for slow smoked ribs (and I live in Kansas City - so I know smoked ribs) I decided to try your recipe anyway.
I decided to add a couple of teaspoons of mild chili powder and, in place of the celery salt I used celery seed and sea salt. So, my rub was just a little different than yours. I added the 1/4 inch of apple juice - but I supplemented with some liquid smoke in the juice. Then I cooked it covered, as you recommended, in the oven. After 2 hours, I moved them to the grill. I quickly charred a side then turned it over and added BBQ sauce (Gates...) to seal in the juices. Then I did the same to that side. Just a quick charring to finish it and 'glue' the sauce on.
What a surprise! It was great! Almost, but not quite, falling off the bone. Tender, juicy - mmmmmm.... The ribs still had plenty of pork flavor and the rub went really well with the Gates sauce. They were among the best ribs I've ever eaten! And so easy! Thank-you, thank-you! Highly recommended.
The method I use for quickly getting very tender beef ribs is to steam them. That way, they don't sit in water and have their flavors disolved out, and they are ready for grilling on the BBQ after about 1 hour. You can poke them with a fork to see when they are soft and then transfer to a grill.
Best resukts are the low & slow smoke & you can do it on a gas grill. First remove the membrane & use your favorite dry rub on the ribs (night before is best, but not jugular).
Make a "boat" out of aluminum foil about 6" long, add hickory chips, fold over & poke some holes in it with a fork. Place the foil puch with the chips over an active section of your grill. Turn on high until the chips catch & begin to smoke. Reduce heat until the grill temp is 225 F.
Place the rqack of ribs bone side down onto the inactive portion of the grill.
LEave ribs cooking for one hour. In the meantime, prepare a mop consisting of 2 c apple cider vinegar, 1 c water, 1 tablespoon olive oil 1 tablespoon minced garlic, 1 tablespoon crushed red papper, and 3 tablespoons brown sugar.
After the first hour has elapsed, begin basting the ribs with the mop every hour for another 3 hours. After these 3 hours have elapsed, baste one more time with your favorite BBQ sauce and leave on for 30 minutes.
Posted: Sat Sep 01, 2007 9:37 pm Post subject: Respond to Jan 29, 2006 reader afraid to use pressure cooker
Sorry to be so late responding to January 29, 2006 post about being afraid of pressure cooking. This is the first time I've been on this web site. I bought a very large pressure cooker years ago in order to can vegetables from the garden. I was absolutely terrified of it, as I had also never used one. Also, this cooker is really large in terms of cooking regular foods, but I have found that it does just fine. This cooker has a petcock which rocks, etc. It isn't an electric one. I remember that I actually hid around the corner from the kitchen when it started going because I was so scared. Anyway, after a few times, I became an old pro. Don't worry about it. Just follow whatever instructions come with the cooker. I guarantee you, you will really love it. I love fixing meals after coming home from work that you wouldn't even consider because they take too long. You might end up spending an hour (only because I have a very large cooker which takes longer to heat up) for a meal that you normally would figure to be 3-4 hours or more.
The poster who stated that indirect heat on the gas grill or a banked charcoal grill to get great beef ribs is absolutely correct. That's barbecue, not grilling.
Tough meat, like beef ribs, need slow cooking to break down the tough tissue. Cooking with moist heat, as in the oven with fluid added, is a good way and there are many delicious short rib recipes that follow that line but if you want real barbecue you have to cook them on a grill with plenty of smoke.