Well, Summer is here, and for a lot of people that means BBQ season!
I won’t get into the debate over gas vs. charcoal, I’ll just say I like both methods, it just depends what I am cooking. I currently have a charcoal grill, so that is what I use.. 😉
I want to talk about flavors, and how to achieve them when you are grilling. I tend to do marinades or rubs when I am cooking on the grill, unless it is just burgers, but thats a whole other topic!
I have a basic “base” recipe for my rub. Works great on ribs (Beef or Pork) and pork. For chicken, I’ll do a marinade, but I am sure you could use this rub for that too, just keep the heat lower.
Here is how I did some baby backs recently. Since I haven’t perfected two zone cooking on a charcoal grill, I did bake these in the oven for two and a half hours first, at 225 degrees. I am still working on doing them completely on the grill, once I perfect that, I’ll share my method with you!
First step, clean your ribs. Rinse them under warm water, this will make peeling the membrane off from the back easier. You don’t have to do this step, but I like to. It is just on the bone, so you may or may not get any stuck in your teeth if you don’t peel it off. I guess it depends how you chew/eat your ribs! 😀
Now, pat the ribs dry with a towel, remove any excessive water.
Time for the rub! Apply it liberally, to both sides, everywhere. I even rub down the ends of the bones. Lol!
Now, you’ll need to wrap them up in a foil pouch, meaty side down. I needed three pieces to completely wrap and seal my ribs, time for bigger foil! 😉
Here they are after two and a half hours at 225 degrees. Beautiful! 😀
Now, lots of people praise ribs that have the meat ‘falling” off the bone, not me! I want the meat tender, but it needs to stay on the bone. I want to eat it off the bone. If it just falls off, why not just do a pulled pork shoulder? :/
Anyhow, if you like yours like that, adjust the cooking time, maybe add an hour?
When the ribs are almost done in the oven, I light my grill. Then I baste them with my homemade BBQ sauce, both sides, every ten minutes on the top rack. Grill was really hot, so I left the lid open, you’ll just need to watch your temps. I wouldn’t let them get over 300 degrees, or the rub will probably move from that beautiful caramelization to burnt! 🙁
Final product, so delicious! Be sure to check out my BBQ Sauce recipe here, pairs perfectly with this rub! But, you don’t necessarily need to do a sauce, the rub is pretty fantastic on its own!
A little about the rub. This recipe is a sweet base, brown sugar and all. you could add more salt if it was for beef, but be very careful, tough to remove too much salt. I feel like you must have the onion and garlic, but the paprika, cumin, and ginger are option. Don’t skip the molasses though, it really adds some depth. Tough to blend in, but worth the effort in my opinion. I really like the earthy tones those add. Play around with the rub, add chili or cayenne if you want some heat. Less sugars, more seasonings will change the over all flavor too.
I will suggest that as you experiment, write down what you’re doing, so when you find that perfect flavor for you, you can repeat it.
Hopefully my recipe will give you a great starting point, or heck, you may love it like it is, and not change a thing! 😀
Hope you like the rub, if you do, please click the Yum button! Thanks 😀
- 1/8 cup kosher salt
- 1/2 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons smoked paprika
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 tablespoon molasses
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons ground pepper
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- Mix all ingredients well, the molasses will really need to be worked in, it will clump, just try to break them up. Well worth the extra effort!
- This makes enough for one rack of Baby Backs.
- Adjust seasoning as you see fit, this make a great sweet rub, with some earthy tones, and caramelizes great on low heat!