Sunday, February 1, 2009

Stovetop-Smoked Ribs

Before making our weekly pilgrimage to the grocery store, the hubby told me he wanted to cook this weekend.

“What are you going to make?” I asked.

“I dunno,” was the response.

This makes me nervous. I am a planner; a definite Type-A personality. Every week I make a list of recipes that I want to make. I decide on which days I would prefer to make them. I make a list of the groceries I will need. This rarely works out perfectly – we have too many leftovers, we might get together with friends rather than cooking, I forget something on one of my precious lists, etc. But generally speaking, it’s a pretty good system.

Except when the hubby throws a wrench into it. “What do you mean, you don’t know? When are you going to decide? How do you know what you’ll need? Oh my gosh, what if you decide not to cook and WE DON’T HAVE ANYTHING TO EAT?”

Welcome to my angst-filled world. This is why we’re usually a good pair, me ‘n’ the hubby. He does a good job of keeping me grounded. But I can’t stand the unknowns of the food schedule. There are just too many things that could go wrong.

Which is why I was pleasantly surprised when the hubby told me yesterday that he thought he’d use his stovetop smoker to make some ribs for the Super Bowl.

We’re frequent users of our outdoor smokers , but the stovetop version is much more convenient for winter, and also makes a much smaller batch of ribs. (We could feed the entire neighborhood with our usual batch.) We just made two pounds of pork spareribs, perfect for snackin’ with our pizza paninis. But you can use baby back ribs, as well. (I discussed some of the pros and cons of each in the smoked BBQ ribs post.)

Plus, our house now smells like Famous Dave’s.

To make these, you obviously need a stovetop smoker, unless you want to fashion your own contraption. (We like our house too much to risk burning it down.) You also need some wood chips designed for stovetop smokers; these are much smaller than wood chips/chunks for outdoor smokers. (You can buy them at the Camerons site or Amazon.

Stovetop-Smoked Ribs
Serves 3-4

2 lbs. pork ribs, either baby back or spareribs
Rib rub or seasoning (preferably Famous Dave’s Rib Rub)
3 Tbsp. hickory wood chips for stovetop smokers
1-2 c. BBQ Sauce (we prefer Famous Dave’s Rich & Sassy)

1. Sprinkle Rib Rub on both sides of the ribs.

2. Place the hickory chips in the bottom try of the smoker.

3. Top with the drip pan (preferably covered with foil, for easy cleanup).

4. Lay the rack on the drip pan, and spray with cooking spray. Lay the ribs on the rack.

5. Slide the cover on, leaving it just a little bit open. Turn your burner to medium, and put the smoker on the burner.

6. As soon as the smoker starts churning out some smoke, slide the cover on completely. This is when the cook time officially starts; you’ll want to smoke the ribs for 45 minutes per pound, so about 1½ hours in this case. After that time, the ribs should be tender and have good color.

7. Place the ribs on a hot grill, basting with sauce on both sides, for about 10 minutes.

8. Let the ribs rest about 5 minutes, and then cut into pieces.

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