Monday, June 25, 2012

Indoor Baby Back Ribs - Take that Tropical Storm Debby!

Bayshore Blvd, June 25th, 2012 - photo rights of TBO.com
Tropical Storm Debby has put a little damper on my life with her wind and rain. I can't run outside & Bayshore is flooded. The winds are 35mph and I hate wind in my ears about as much as I hate clowns.

Of course I set out Baby Back Ribs for tonight and obviously we can't put them on the grill. Growing up, my Father made the worlds best ribs. He even considered selling his business and opening up a rib shack before he passed away. After I lost my Dad, it took me nearly 8 years to eat ribs. I had to learn to make them  myself to get over the rib hiatus.

Issues w/ me cooking ribs:
  1. I cook A LOT but had never cooked ribs, Dad did that. 
  2. I had high standards to meet up to.  Daddy had the best ribs on the planet
  3. One thing I knew growing up was Ribs took a lot of time to cook - and a grill. We live in a condo. We don't have a grill.
So a few months ago, with the help of my Mom, I came up with a Par Boiled Baby Back Rib recipe that has received RAVE reviews on Just a Pinch Recipe Club.  I made this a few times. They were always perfect but I hated the mess and length of time they took. After some reviewing online, I found out (Brace yourselves BBQ connoisseurs) you can cook Baby Back Ribs in the CROCK-POT! I was very skeptical about doing this, but it exceeded my expectations and Gabe says they are the best ribs he has ever had.

So here are the steps and the recipe for my almost famous Crock-Pot Baby Back Ribs

Start out with a 3lb slab of Baby Backs. My Martha Stewart Pig Cutting board decided to make a guest appearance in this post:
Remove the silver lining on the back. This is a must. If you don't do this, your ribs will be tough.
Cut into four smaller slabs - about 3-4 ribs per slab
Make a dry rub. You can use pretty much any spice combo you want, it depends on your taste preferences. I prefer my ribs spicy and sweet so I use a combination of dark brown sugar, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin, paprika, Cavender's Greek Seasoning, Pepper, Salt and whatever else I feel like throwing into the mix that day. There is no science to this and I have no idea how much I use but it always comes out good.

This is what it should look like after being mixed:
Now it's time to get down and dirty. Give those ribs a nice rub down. Piggy got down and dirty with it too:
Place the two largest slabs on the bottom of the crock pot and take the two smaller ones and either crisscross them or slightly layer them on top of the larger ones. Cook them for 8 hours on low (if it is a little longer, that is fine). This is what the finished product before adding the BBQ sauce should look like:
You will notice liquid on the bottom, that is from the ribs being cooked, not anything I put in there. This is a dry Crock Pot recipe. When you go to add BBQ sauce, use your preference. I am a Sweet Baby Rays kind of gal. I prefer his Sweet and Spicy, since it goes really well with my dry rub.  These ribs are very tender and juicy so they don't need much. I add just enough to baste the top and put it on high for 30 min to soak in.

And the finished product, served along with baked sweet potato fries (I used the Bacon Salt my foodie pen pal sent me this month!) and a glass bottle of Robert Mondavi Private Reserve Pinot Noir.

I know this recipe would make Bobby Flay cringe but honestly, it is really good and a healthy alternative to BBQ. A half a slab of ribs BBQ'd with tons of sauce would get you at 500-700 calories, whereas this one with the rub and 2 tablespoons of sauce will only be around 250 calories.

A runners tip: I usually do something in the crock pot on Monday since that is a day I do night runs. I hate cooking after running and this is a snap to clean up, just throw the crock pot in the dishwasher!

5 comments:

  1. I love a good rib recipe! My boyfriend has been keeping me up to date with Debby and her havoc. I hope you all stay safe and relatively dry. He's been trying to assure me that everything is okay.

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  2. Sounds great. I have made lots of ribs but never in the crockpot. I will give it a try sometime..Sounds easy and love those kind of recipes.. PS..I love the Homesick Texan's Dr Pepper ribs..You cook them in the oven and oh my.... Now, I am off to look up bacon salt! I never heard of it. Thank you!

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  3. I will have to check out the Homesick Texan's Dr. Pepper ribs for sure. I recently made Dr. Pepper pulled pork and loved it. I got even crazier and did espresso pulled pork - dry rubbed it in espresso & brown sugar and used Cigar City Brewery's Cubano-style Espresso Beer for the liquid. I will blog about that soon. It was beyond.

    You will love this recipe! It's sooo easy and healthy.

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  4. Winnie, I just posted my recipe for the Cubano-Style Espresso Pulled Pork - http://www.irunforwine.net/2012/07/espresso-and-beer-pulled-pork-recipe.html

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  5. I just did these! These are the BEST BEST ribs ever!!!!

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