I'm pumped. I'm beyond pumped. My brother, Chaz, scored incredible seats for the Bears vs. 49ers game this Saturday night and, being the sweet older brother that he is, he invited me. Naturally, this made me think of tailgating.
Tailgating and football go hand-in-hand. No one will argue with you on that one. My tailgating experience has mostly been at Indy 500 and at A-Basin Moutain after long ski days. But we keep it simple. Just some burgers and brats. Nothing crazy. So, I did a little research this morning to find a recipe that I thought may be worth trying out at your next tailgater. This is what I found:
southwestern-style baby back ribs
The Tailgating Cookbook 2005
By Bob Sloan
I once considered making more authentic smoked ribs for a tailgate party and, in the planning, realized that not only would I need to be at the parking lot hours before everyone else, but my grill was not large enough to smoke enough ribs for everyone in my party. And to try to pass off just "a taste" of barbecued ribs is like trying to arm-tackle Priest Holmes. So it was a choice between shelling out for another grill or devising another method of cooking the ribs. Baking them first in a slow oven produced moist, flavorful meat I then had only to finish on the grill.
Makes 4 servings.
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon onion powder
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 racks baby back ribs, about 5 pounds
3 cups barbecue sauce
In a small bowl, mix together the thyme, garlic, onion powder, brown sugar, paprika, chili powder, rosemary, salt, and black pepper. Rub the spice mixture over both sides of the ribs. Wrap in plastic and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 325°F. Unwrap the ribs and place them on a baking sheet. Cover completely with foil. Bake for 1 hour and 10 minutes. Remove the foil and let the ribs cool. Refrigerate them, wrapped in plastic, until you are ready to pack, up to 24 hours.
Just before leaving, cut the racks into individual ribs and place them in a large, sealable plastic container. Add 1 cup of the barbecue sauce and stir so all the ribs are coated.
At the tailgate
Prepare coals for a medium fire. When the coals are hot, grill the ribs for 10 minutes, until they are lightly charred and heated through, turning them several times and applying several more moppings of sauce.
Serve the ribs hot, accompanied by more sauce.