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Catering, Vending and Cooking For The Masses. this forum is OnTopic. A resource to help with catering, vending and just cooking for large parties. Topics to include Getting Started, Ethics, Marketing, Catering resources, Formulas and recipes for cooking for large groups.


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Unread 04-25-2012, 06:54 AM   #1
biggs98
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Default Ribs in advance???

Doing 12 racks for a party and I was looking to do them a day or 2 before. My question is should I freeze or fridge them? Should I leave them whole or cut them? Is reheating them in a sterno ok? Any advice is greatly appreciated... Thanks!
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Unread 04-25-2012, 08:08 AM   #2
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My first two answers would be fridge, not freezer and leave them whole.

It might just be me and my ribs, but I find re-heated ribs to not be the best. I've found that cooking them to almost done, maybe an hour short of finished, then cooling and finishing on the smoker works really well. Your style of 3-2-1 is what I'm talking about here. Cook for 3, foil and cook for two, then take them off the cooker and cool quickly and into the fridge. To finish them, unwrap from foil and put into an up to temp cooker and go till done. Should be about an hour.

Another way is cook till done, chill and re-heat on a grill for a different taste.
I would not reheat in a chafing dish.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 08:25 AM   #3
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I would sear them on the grill to reheat. You want the ribs to taste fresh and not be soggy.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 08:37 AM   #4
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Under cook them by an hour, cool quickly, refridge, reheat wrapped individually in foil in oven at 250 degrees for 45 minutes, open foil, finish in oven for 15 minutes or on grill(ideal). I suggest doing a practice try with one slab to see if you are happy with it.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 08:58 AM   #5
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In my opinion, I would not want to eat ribs at a party cooked 2 days prior, regardless of how they were prepared.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 09:03 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone!!! Going to do them the day of the party, it'll be a little more work but I don't want the taste to suffer.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 09:35 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by biggs98 View Post
Thanks everyone!!! Going to do them the day of the party, it'll be a little more work but I don't want the taste to suffer.
Ribs are not too labor intensive. This really is the best solution.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 09:37 AM   #8
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When we go on our shore trip every year I always cook them about a week in advance and freeze them. I cook them until they were about 30 minutes from done. Then freeze them. I think I would freeze them even if it were only for 2 days rather than keep them in the refrigerator. The same principal as to why a flash frozen turkey is a lot of times a better product than a never frozen bird. The meat is frozen at the optimal point and instead of sitting on the shelf for a few days or in the fridge in this case. The ribs thaw fairly quickly so that shouldn't be a problem. You can always thaw them in cold water the morning of your party. I reheat mine on the grill but the oven would work fine as well. Sauce if you're into that thing gets applied the day of.

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Unread 04-25-2012, 09:39 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by expatpig View Post
In my opinion, I would not want to eat ribs at a party cooked 2 days prior, regardless of how they were prepared.
I know personal preference plays into this but I actually prefer to smoke my ribs a day or two before I eat them and let them sit in the frig. I've eaten ribs straight off the smoker and ribs that are a day or two in the frig. And TO ME it seems the ribs that have had time to sit and let the seasonings settle taste the best to me. But that's just me.
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Unread 04-25-2012, 11:03 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Bamabuzzard View Post
I know personal preference plays into this but I actually prefer to smoke my ribs a day or two before I eat them and let them sit in the frig. I've eaten ribs straight off the smoker and ribs that are a day or two in the frig. And TO ME it seems the ribs that have had time to sit and let the seasonings settle taste the best to me. But that's just me.
I do the same for my personal consumption, but if I were to be cooking for a party, or a catering event, they would be fresh.
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Unread 04-27-2012, 10:00 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bamabuzzard View Post
I know personal preference plays into this but I actually prefer to smoke my ribs a day or two before I eat them and let them sit in the frig. I've eaten ribs straight off the smoker and ribs that are a day or two in the frig. And TO ME it seems the ribs that have had time to sit and let the seasonings settle taste the best to me. But that's just me.
I couldn't agree more, and I learned it eating leftovers. If I'm cooking for friends and want the absolute best I can do, I purposefully cook 2-3 days in advance. After cooling I slice individually, sauce, and throw in the fridge. Exactly like spaghetti sauce or soup - the flavor gets better over time. 3 days seems best, then if they get older the taste starts to drop off. The texture even seems to get better - a little more tender and slides off the bone easier. I've not got anything but high compliments from doing this. The time I had my boss over for dinner my wife identifies as the best ribs she ever ate.
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Unread 04-30-2012, 09:49 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Catfish Charlie View Post
I couldn't agree more, and I learned it eating leftovers. If I'm cooking for friends and want the absolute best I can do, I purposefully cook 2-3 days in advance. After cooling I slice individually, sauce, and throw in the fridge. Exactly like spaghetti sauce or soup - the flavor gets better over time. 3 days seems best, then if they get older the taste starts to drop off. The texture even seems to get better - a little more tender and slides off the bone easier. I've not got anything but high compliments from doing this. The time I had my boss over for dinner my wife identifies as the best ribs she ever ate.

Yeah, same here. It seems "fresh off the smoker", though still good, just doesn't allow the seasonings and juices to completely "settle" and "marry" with the rib meat. I've experimented with this enough times I know it isn't just a "myth" or a mental thing.
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