Triple Whammy Ribs…

Today called for a celebration. Yesterday I bought a grill/smoker combo from somebody off Craigslist. I haven’t had a grill in my apartment here ever. But I love grilling back home, so I had to satisfy the urge.  The Washington State Cougars also pulled off a 30-27 win in OT after trailing 24-7. They still suck, but hey they won.  Here’s to not going 0-12 like the Huskies!  *cheers*.

When it comes to ribs, there are many choices: riblets, spare ribs, beef short ribs, beef long ribs, pork loin ribs, etc.  But you can never go wrong with baby back pork ribs.  They’re always well marbled, yet lean enough to eat the whole rib. And they’re pork, so they’re awesome. Pigs are by far the best animal for eating. I love steak more than the next guy, but pork is so versatile.

Today I cooked the ribs three times, hence the triple whammy title. It was definitely the best ribs I have EVER had, and that’s saying alot. First I boiled them like the Tangy Guava Ribs, then I smoked them (because my grill does both), and finished them off by grilling them while glazing them with sauce to caramelize it.

The sauce I had was taken out of Steven Raichlen’s book “Ribs, Ribs, Ribs”. I got it for a few bucks at a used book store, so I thought what the heck. There are actually quite a few very good sauces in here. Today’s was the Lemon Brown Sugar Sauce, with some minor adjustments. It’s a sweet tangy sauce that I added a bit of smoke flavoring to. I normally use real onions in sauce, but because I wanted it to be smooth, not chunky, I used onion powder.

For the smoker, I used charcoal to start the fire, threw some hickory chunks on there for great flavor, and placed a water pan with the water the ribs boiled in for extra flavor. It also helped catch grease so it didn’t go on the fire.

I served it with grilled corn, fried green beans with garlic and shallots, and Three Bean Baked Beans from Elise runs one of my favorite blogs to read and if you don’t already read hers, you should. I tweaked the recipe a bit as well.


Triple Whammy Ribs with Lemon Brown Sugar Sauce

Start your charcoal or electric grill and have your wood chips or chunks pre-soaked. Aim for around 250 degrees for your smoker.

2 slabs baby back ribs, cut into 4 rib sections
2 whole green onions, roots and all
1 inch ginger, cut into coins
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1/8 cup sea salt

Place everything into a stock pot and submerge ribs in water. Bring to a boil and simmer for 45 minutes.

Lemon Brown Sugar Sauce
(Adapted from Steve Raichlen)

2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1 1/2 t lemon zest
6 T fresh lemon juice
2 T molasses
1 T Worcestershire sauce
2 t liquid smoke
2 t dry mustard
1 t onion powder
1/2 t ground black pepper

Combine everything into a saucepan and mix well.  Bring to a simmer over medium heat for about 10 minutes so it can thicken. Let cool to room temperature and store in the refrigerator. Before use, warm up on the stove before basting ribs.

When the fire is ready, place ribs on the grate over the liquid and fire. Toss the wood chunks on the coals now, so you don’t start smoking until the ribs are on the grill. Cover and smoke 3 hours, with no peeking. It lets the smoke out. If you hear sizzling, the water is getting low and more needs to be added. Keep an eye on the temperature to make sure it remains around the same.

When the smoking phase is over, adjust the grill so the coals are right under the cooking grate. Baste the sauce on one side of the ribs and flip over onto the sauced side. Baste the other side while it chars. After a few minutes, flip over to the other side. Repeat this process again (so each side gets basted and charred twice).  Save extra sauce for serving.

Three Bean Baked Beans
(Adapted from Elise Bauer)

7 bacon slices, sliced about 1/2″ wide
1 large onion, finely diced
1 T dry mustard
1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
3/4 cup ketchup
3 T pre-made BBQ sauce (I used Hunts Hickory Sweet)
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/3 cup dark molasses
1/3 cup water
1 bay leaf
1 15 ounce can red kidney beans, drained (don’t rinse with water, keep the slimy stuff on it)
1 15 ounce can black beans, drained
1 15 ounce can white beans, drained
1 teaspoon hot sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Cook bacon over medium heat in a dutch oven or other pot that can go into the oven after. Remove and save in another container.

Add onion and saute for about 5 minutes until they are sweated out and browned. Add mustard and thyme and stir up.

Mix in ketchup, vinegar, molasses, water, bay leaf, beans, and salt and pepper to taste.

Cover pot and place in the oven for 45 minutes. During the baking process, stir occasionally. It shouldn’t dry out, but if it does, add more water.

Add bacon and bake for another 15 minutes. Discard the bay leaf. Mix in hot sauce and serve.



It goes down good with a bottle of Moose Drool by Big Sky Brewing too.


One Response

  1. […] with the “triple”s Kyle? Triple Whammy Burgers, Ribs, Grilled Cheese, etc.  What’s the deal?  Well, some say good things come in threes so what […]

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