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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 10-26-2010, 05:00 PM   #1
chillcoolcold
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Default Spareribs cut St. louis style

I have tried cutting spareribs to square off, I usually have trouble figuring out where to cut. Butchered (no pun intended) my first few. I guess leaving some of the cartilage on the smaller bones will keep it square. Or maybe just cook the whole slab and cut it all up later. Or cut off the smaller bones completely.
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Unread 10-26-2010, 05:05 PM   #2
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Feel the bones and cut right above where the bones end for a st louis cut. first cut the flap meat off the back. Should be an easy cut.
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Unread 10-26-2010, 05:32 PM   #3
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Yeah... it's not too hard. Leaving a little cartlidge on the ends of the smaller ones isn't too bad.

1. Trim the flap of meat off the bone side
2. Feel along the middle of the slab length-wise and locate the end of the bone and the begining of the cartlidge.
3. Using a SHARP knife, with your finger tips on the junction of bone and cartlidge, lay the flat of the blade against your fingers and draw the knife along the juncture.

A good sharp knife will take the rib tips right off. A little practice and you'll be able to do an entire slab - membrane and all - in less than 30 seconds.
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Unread 10-26-2010, 06:49 PM   #4
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I've been subscribing to the "find the longest bone and cut from there" method to gain the squared off appearance. You're gonna have some cartilage left, but its not a huge deal.
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Unread 10-26-2010, 07:16 PM   #5
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Default OK Rib Tips?

OK thanks that makes sense. Now how exactly do I make rib tips and cook those??
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Unread 10-27-2010, 05:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Lou View Post
I've been subscribing to the "find the longest bone and cut from there" method to gain the squared off appearance. You're gonna have some cartilage left, but its not a huge deal.
I ditto this. Like he said there will be some cartilage above the shorter bones, but heck every piece of chicken I ever ate had cartilage in it.
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Unread 10-27-2010, 06:48 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chillcoolcold View Post
Now how exactly do I make rib tips and cook those??
I apply dry rub and smoke just like the rest of the rack of ribs. That's some good eatin' right there.
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Unread 10-27-2010, 07:20 AM   #8
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Not to hijack the thread too much...But does anyone do anything special with the trimmings? I usually end up throwing everything on the smoker and just kind of pick at the trimmings as i go along (it's still pork afterall), but it's really nothing I'd ever serve to anyone. A lot of that meat(and fat, cartilage etc) just gets thrown out when all is said and done. Is there something else that I should be doing?
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Unread 10-27-2010, 08:57 AM   #9
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I cut it up for tacos

Quote:
Originally Posted by kcchiefdav View Post
Not to hijack the thread too much...But does anyone do anything special with the trimmings? I usually end up throwing everything on the smoker and just kind of pick at the trimmings as i go along (it's still pork afterall), but it's really nothing I'd ever serve to anyone. A lot of that meat(and fat, cartilage etc) just gets thrown out when all is said and done. Is there something else that I should be doing?
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Unread 10-27-2010, 09:28 AM   #10
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ive had good luck bending the ribs at the tips to find the joint, back and forth a few times and you know exactly where to start your cuts
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Unread 10-27-2010, 09:31 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chillcoolcold View Post
OK thanks that makes sense. Now how exactly do I make rib tips and cook those??
It depends. Do you like rib tips as much as ribs?

If yes, then season and cook them just like you would the ribs. I usually cook my SLC ribs for five hours-ish, which I have usually found is too much for rib tips. I will either put the tips in 90 minutes after I put in the ribs, so that I can serve them at the same time. Or, I'll put them in at the same time, and pull them out 90 minutes early and serve them as an appetizer.

If you are like me and like ribs better than rib tips, you can turn them into something different altogether. This is what I like to do. It's a bit unorthodox, but hey, so am I.

1. Chop the rib tips into 1-rib sections. Cover them with rub.
2. Put a bit of oil in a cast iron pot. Sear the rib tips, either on the stove, or above the coals on your smoker.
3. Throw in whatever spices you want in with the rib tips; I prefer to have them as naked as possible.
4. Submerge the rib tips in liquid. I use a mix of vinegar, water and hot pepper.
5. Bring the liquid to a boil, then place it underneath the ribs that you have cooking. Don't cover the pot!
6. Close the smoker and grab a beer.

At first, the liquid will braise the rib tips. Eventually when the liquid evaporates, the smoke will seep in and start to dry cook them. Finally, the combination of the rendered fat from the tips and the dripping fat from the ribs will begin to fry the rib tips.

After about 3 hours, they're ready to go. You can either pull the meat off the bones and have mini-carnitas. Or, you can serve them as is: deep-fried, smoke-kissed, tender little nuggets of deliciousness.
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Unread 10-27-2010, 09:50 AM   #12
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Youtube is your friend. There are a ton of good videos up there. Here's one on trimming spares. There are plenty more to choose from.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PpJxnnVOLiM
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Unread 10-27-2010, 10:09 AM   #13
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Todd (Plowboy) had an excellent video up on his site, but I can't find it now...

anyone have a link to it?
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Unread 10-27-2010, 10:12 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chillcoolcold View Post
OK thanks that makes sense. Now how exactly do I make rib tips and cook those??
I cook the tips the same way I cook the ribs.

I trim them down to look like this:



Then I cut them into 2" chunks, sauce and serve. Like this:



I never had any complaints!
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Unread 10-27-2010, 01:23 PM   #15
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I cook the tips the same way and at the same time I cook the ribs but pull 'em after 3.5 or 4 hours instead of letting them go the full 5.5 to 6 hours I cook the ribs for. I usually nosh on them a little bit during the cook, but mostly, I'll cut up the meat to use in other dishes.

Specifically, I use rib tips in chili, beans, enchiladas, tacos and as a topper for my own brand of cobb salad.
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