If you follow me often or know of my outdoor cooking ways then you know I most often use a rub on just about every piece of meat that hits the grate. Well folks, today it's all about the mop or sop as some like to call it.
I have many times preached the need and benefits of what I consider the three essentials in good BBQ or grilled foods. That is marinade, rub and mop. Some instances the need for a fourth, the glaze will appear in a recipe but most of my cooking ideas tend to be flavorful enough that I rarely use a BBQ sauce or glaze. Of course, it just depends on the meat and the recipe. I mean, you can't have sticky sweet ribs without a dripping sauce, right?
The recipe today is a little sweet but it does not come off the grill with a dripping sauce. And it consists of using only one of the four elements but in two ways. The marinade tenderizes the meat, soaks in flavor while resting in the refrigerator and then with a little additions (and recooking to rid bacteria) it is used as the mop to keep the ribs moist, succulent and doing what a mop does -mop on more flavor. Enjoy!
Ever Lovin' Summer Ribs
4 to 6 servings
2 slabs of pork ribs, I like St. Louis style
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon crushed oregano
2 bay leaves, broken
1-inch piece fresh ginger, grated
1 cup cold grapefruit juice
1/2 cup cold orange juice
2 tablespoons lemon or lime juice
additional citrus juices and vinegar
honey and marmalade of choice
In a small saucepan, heat vinegar, sugar, red pepper, cumin, garlic and onion powders, black pepper, oregano, bay leaves and ginger over medium heat until sugar dissolves and mixture is simmering. Remove from heat and allow marinade to cool about 5 minutes.
Remove the silver skin from the underneath side of the ribs pulling it away from the rib area. Wash the ribs and pat completely dry with paper towels. Place ribs in a large pan or dish to marinade. I like to cut the each slap in half to ease in grilling, but that's just a personal thing.
Add the cold grapefruit and orange juice to the marinade along with the lemon juice. Stir and pour over the ribs.
Allow to marinate refrigerated at least 4 hours or overnight if desired turning a few times.
Grill over low coals or flame until end bones protrude past the meat and a nice, grilled crust forms on the ribs. You may have to move ribs from time to time to a cooler side of the grill if ribs are noticeably burning, especially if your mop is high on sweeteners and this one is today.
Use a similar marinade or the same one as I did today in keeping the ribs moist and flavorsome. If using the same marinade, allow mixture to come to a rolling boil and boil for 5 minutes adding more juices and vinegar to end up with about 2 cups for a mopping solution. I also add a bit of honey and a good spoonful of pineapple or orange marmalade for a really exciting summery mouthful.
For those of you unfamiliar, this is a mop solution and mop, respectively.