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Posted: Fri Apr 25, 2014 16:25
by Cabonaia
Final word on my attempt to save freezer burned spare ribs. Previous post:

To finish up on my freezer burned ribs story - I salted them and let them sit in the fridge for 6 or so hours, then rinsed them, resalted, and let them go another 6. I knew I'd have hammy ribs, but I like them that way sometimes. They smelled about the same after this salt treatment. I put a rub on them and bbq'd them as usual. They came out too salty to eat (not surprising...I should have made a salt-free rub), but otherwise tasty, with no taint of freezer burn. So I'm going to strip the meat off the bones, make some BBQ sauce without salt, and simmer them in that. We'll see how that goes.

I simmered the ribs, bone-in actually, in a lot of water for a about an hour, then added tomato paste and kept simmering another hour. No herbs or spices added except a couple bay leaves, since the ribs were seasoned already, and no bbq sauce ingredients except tomato. Still a bit too salty, so I removed half the broth, added some thick, salt-free strained tomatoes, and plenty of pressed garlic. Removed the bones from the pot after the meat fell off. Well, it came out great. No freezer burn flavor, and a really tasty red gravy. The salty broth that I removed proved useful in another dish containing sausage, potatoes, carrots, and celery, to which I once again added salt free strained tomatoes.

Normally I just cut away any discolored freezer burned meat, and I did that in the few places on these ribs where it showed, but they still smelled like freezer burn. I guess you could say these were "medium" burned. Now I know what to do in the future, because...freezer burn happens.

So now I have a recipe for BBQ Ribs in Red Gravy. This would be good to serve at an event where people don't want to get messy eating ribs off the bone.

1. Rub a rack of spare ribs with your favorite dry rub, including salt.
2. BBQ low and slow.
3. Cut the ribs into individual pieces, add water to cover, and simmer till the meat is falling off the bones. Add water occasionally if necessary to keep the ribs covered.
4. Add 1 can tomato paste and 4 cloves pressed garlic. More tomato paste can be added if you like a thicker sauce, or if the gravy is too salty.
5. Season with salt, if necessary, and pepper, simmer another 10 minutes, remove the bones, and serve.


Posted: Sat Apr 26, 2014 13:54
by Chuckwagon
Jeff, Twice last month I cooked ribs for a crowd who fought to grab 'em off the grill! There was plenty of Rusty Spur Sauce to drown 'em in too. Lots of mashed 'taters and corn on the cob. Then I noticed two people from England who were trying to use a knife and a fork on the ribs. I explained that it is perfectly acceptable to eat ribs with your fingers and it is not considered bad manners at all. I wouldn't go so far as to say we scoop up the mashed potatoes with the end of a rib though.
I checked back. The Englishmen were still trying to cut the meat from the ribs with a knife and fork. Everyone else had eaten a dozen of the things and were wiping up red sauce and smearing it from hell to breakfast! The English...? Yup, they were still using "table manners"... trying to cut them with a knife and fork. :roll:

Two weeks later, it was the same picture. Both Englishmen were using a knife and fork on ribs! I thought maybe we'd just left them there after the first dinner party and perhaps they were still trying to cut the same rib! :shock:

These guys are going to get mighty hungry. Everyone has explained the proper way to eat ribs to them... but NOOoooooo.... they will not relent. They insist on English manners and will NOT eat ribs with their fingers. Shucks Jeff, I just may have to slap 'em or something. I'll probably file next year's taxes and send out Christmas cards before these guys get a bite to eat! :shock: Have you ever heard of anything so goofy? :lol: (Besides the Duk!).

Best Wishes,

Posted: Sat Apr 26, 2014 16:40
by Cabonaia
Chuck, I have seen the like of it, many times. With tears. I have also been to a local Pakistani restaurant where most of the patrons have no use for knife or fork, but use two fingers to scoop up everything, including rice and gravy! They hover their head a couple inches above the food and flip it in. My Indian friends tell me that this is the way many of them eat back home, but they don't want to use bad manners here in the States. Is it bad manners to eat ribs with a knife and fork at an American BBQ? I wouldn't go that far - but it is certainly denying yourself a good time. In fact, you are having your own little non-BBQ when you eat your food that way! We have had plenty people over here who would not even pick up their grilled chicken. I try not to comment or stare. My wife has told me to stop saying, "You can just pick it up, see?"

Slaughtered a nice fat pig on Thursday, have been chilling it, and will cut it up today. Meanwhile, got started on using up the organs in Butterbean's braunschweiger and Portuguese blood sausage (morcella). Woo-hoo!