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Unread 01-18-2014, 08:19 PM   #1
IlliniQ
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Default First try with St. Louis style ribs

Smoking some ribs for the first time tomorrow. Got just one rack of St. Louis style. Been reading a lot of old threads on here regarding technique, but didn't really come across a consensus.

Leaning towards the 3-2-1, or a modification of it depending on how fast it all cooks. I don't want them to fall apart, but I do like my ribs to pull off the bone cleanly. Also, I plan to do a rub before I start them, and will probably sauce at least half of them (if not all) as my wife loves saucy ribs.

I'll post some pics tomorrow, but thought I would see if anyone had any strong opinions or suggestions on the best way to do these ribs.
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Unread 01-18-2014, 08:30 PM   #2
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3-2-1 is a guideline for full slab spares at 225 degrees. 3-2-1 on St. Louis trimmed spares will be over cooked.

If you want to foil, try 2-1-1 at 250 - 275. That will be close depending on the size of the racks. I try to get racks that are between 2.75 and 3 lbs and I cook at 265 and mine normal routine when I foil is 2.5-1.5-until done.

If you don't want to foil, just cook them until they pass the bend test, probably 4 - 4.5 hours.
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Unread 01-18-2014, 08:58 PM   #3
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Thanks! Not set either way on foiling. The rack I got is about 3.5 pounds. I may just go without the foil this time. The less steps involved, the less chances to get into trouble.
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Unread 01-18-2014, 09:01 PM   #4
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I believe in keeping it simple to start
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Unread 01-18-2014, 10:26 PM   #5
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I think everyone starting out with ribs should learn to cook them nekkid, no spritz, no mop, no foil, no peeking, with just a simple dry rub and no mustard slather. Once they learn how to cook ribs like this, then they can start to get fancy.

This way you are concentrating on the basics, like cooking them till they are done. All the extra steps are just that, extra steps that aren't needed to make great ribs.
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Unread 01-19-2014, 12:25 AM   #6
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What El Ropo said is great advice. Learn to cook ribs well first, then try new tastes and techniques.
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Unread 01-19-2014, 01:50 PM   #7
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It's super windy here today, and I still haven't constructed and airflow damper, so temp control will be tricky, but the ribs are on. Went with a light dusting of old bay and turbinado sugar, don't plan to foil. Also made a little foil cup with the trimmings coated in rub and hot sauce. Hoping for the best.


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Unread 01-19-2014, 02:01 PM   #8
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Anything, even a garbage can, can help block wind. A piece of cardboard and a couple of lawn chairs can save the day.
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Unread 01-19-2014, 02:01 PM   #9
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I put my rub mine and coat with yellow mustard about 1/2 hr before putting them on the webber. I cut the slab in half and stack them. Let the mustard cook in for an hour or so, then about every 45 min I un-stack, mop with sauce, shuffle, and restack. Done when the ends of the bones can bee seen, usually about 3 hrs or so.

Oh, and of course this is done low and slow, indirect.

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Unread 01-19-2014, 03:08 PM   #10
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Looks like a good start.
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Unread 01-19-2014, 09:27 PM   #11
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Plenty of rib pr0n to come, but first a few "chef's snacks" I whipped up during this cook. The little bit of trimmings weren't enough to save. So I slathered them in mustard, franks hot sauce and old bay.



I put them onto a piece of foil so they wouldn't fall through the grate, and smoked them for about 2.5 hours. Came out very similar to a spicy, crispy pork belly. Yum!

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Unread 01-19-2014, 09:40 PM   #12
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Here's the rest of the rib cook with some plated pr0n...

Ended up coating in mustard and using a rub of old bay and turbinado sugar. No thermometer yet, so not sure what temp, but smoked over royal oak lump with applewood chunks for about 2.5 hours, sprayed with a mix of cider vinegar and old style, cooked another hour, coated with some sauce (one piece got a sweet sauce, one got a spicy sauce), cooked one more hour after saucing (total of 4.5 hours). Pulled, rested about thirty minutes until dinner time, served up with beans and some steamed green beans. Pretty successful first rib cook...my two year old couldn't get enough, and there's no greater seal of approval than a happy toddler!











Thanks for the helpful tips from all of you!
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Unread 01-19-2014, 09:51 PM   #13
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I'd chow on them bones!
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Unread 01-19-2014, 09:51 PM   #14
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Great lookin bones! Looks like you nailed it!
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Unread 01-19-2014, 10:01 PM   #15
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I'm glad that they came out well!
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