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Barbecue (alt.food.barbecue) Discuss barbecue and grilling--southern style "low and slow" smoking of ribs, shoulders and briskets, as well as direct heat grilling of everything from burgers to salmon to vegetables.

Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?



 
 
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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 26-02-2006, 06:38 PM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 23
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

I made a bunch of spare-ribs yesterday (10 pounds). I put a brown
sugar/salt rub on them and smoked them in my weber. I put all the
coals off to one side, with a drip pan under the other side, and put
them all in a rib rack over the drip pan. Put soaked chips on the
coals. and put the lid on. After an hour, the coals were still burning
pretty good so I put more chips on and put the lid on for another hour
or so. Took them off and ate. They were good I guess but really
tough. Any ideas as to why this happened? Did I not cook them long
enough? or too long maybe?

I made ribs a few months ago and they were perfect. The only thing I
can think I did different was I was only making one small rack that
time.

Thanks.

Ads
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 12:05 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 23
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

Stan,

That helped a bunch. Did just like you said, without the apple juice
since I don't have any though. They are 100% better. The fat just
hadn't broken down enough in them I guess. Anyway, thanks. I've got a
bunch of good ribs now.

Stan Marks wrote:
In article . com,
wrote:

I made a bunch of spare-ribs yesterday (10 pounds). I put a brown
sugar/salt rub on them and smoked them in my weber. I put all the
coals off to one side, with a drip pan under the other side, and put
them all in a rib rack over the drip pan. Put soaked chips on the
coals. and put the lid on. After an hour, the coals were still burning
pretty good so I put more chips on and put the lid on for another hour
or so. Took them off and ate. They were good I guess but really
tough. Any ideas as to why this happened? Did I not cook them long
enough? or too long maybe?

I made ribs a few months ago and they were perfect. The only thing I
can think I did different was I was only making one small rack that
time.


Spareribs typically need 5-6 hours at +/- 250 degrees to tenderize. Two
hours ain't nearly 'nuff!

If I were you, I would wrap those ribs up in some foil with a little
apple juice inside and put 'em in a 250-degree oven for a few hours to
finish cooking. Might not be the best way to cook ribs, but it'll beat
having to gnaw on 'em or throw 'em out!

--
Stan Marks

A waist is a terrible thing to mind.


  #6 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 01:04 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 10
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

In article . com,
wrote:

Stan,

That helped a bunch. Did just like you said, without the apple juice
since I don't have any though. They are 100% better. The fat just
hadn't broken down enough in them I guess. Anyway, thanks. I've got a
bunch of good ribs now.


Pleased to be of service!

Stan

Stan Marks wrote:
In article . com,
wrote:

I made a bunch of spare-ribs yesterday (10 pounds). I put a brown
sugar/salt rub on them and smoked them in my weber. I put all the
coals off to one side, with a drip pan under the other side, and put
them all in a rib rack over the drip pan. Put soaked chips on the
coals. and put the lid on. After an hour, the coals were still burning
pretty good so I put more chips on and put the lid on for another hour
or so. Took them off and ate. They were good I guess but really
tough. Any ideas as to why this happened? Did I not cook them long
enough? or too long maybe?

I made ribs a few months ago and they were perfect. The only thing I
can think I did different was I was only making one small rack that
time.


Spareribs typically need 5-6 hours at +/- 250 degrees to tenderize. Two
hours ain't nearly 'nuff!

If I were you, I would wrap those ribs up in some foil with a little
apple juice inside and put 'em in a 250-degree oven for a few hours to
finish cooking. Might not be the best way to cook ribs, but it'll beat
having to gnaw on 'em or throw 'em out!

--
Stan Marks

A waist is a terrible thing to mind.



--
Stan Marks

A waist is a terrible thing to mind.
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 01:35 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 935
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

Stan Marks wrote:
In article ,
Steve Calvin wrote:


wrote:

Stan,

That helped a bunch. Did just like you said, without the apple juice
since I don't have any though. They are 100% better. The fat just
hadn't broken down enough in them I guess. Anyway, thanks. I've got a
bunch of good ribs now.


Personally, I'da just left 'em on the Weber at 250 until
tender instead of wrapping them in foil and doing them in an
oven. And I won't even go into the "que'd vs steamed"
debate. ;-D



Well, he did say that he cooked them yesterday, if you'll recall. I
figgered that the leftovers had been in the fridge overnight, and, in my
experience, putting cold, under-done meat back on a grill is an
invitation to further disaster. I'd rather trust an oven over a grill
when it comes to re-cooking something that wasn't quite done, yet. The
foil trick helps to conserve what moisture is left in the meat, too.
(What if he'd already slice 'em up? I've used this trick to save a
hunk of meat, on occasion, when I mis-judged the cooking time and ended
up with something underdone.

Stan

Ah, nope. That post appearently was deleted off of the
server before I got there. I "pieced" together things and
must have missed that.

I've not had that happen and had to deal with things the
next day. Do you think that the oven would be preferable
over bringing them to room temp and then back in the smoker?

Although, I could see where that may have a tendancy to
yield a dry result.

--
Steve
No piece of paper can be folded in half more than 7 times.
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 01:52 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
external usenet poster
 
Posts: 10
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

In article ,
Steve Calvin wrote:

Stan Marks wrote:
In article ,
Steve Calvin wrote:


wrote:

Stan,

That helped a bunch. Did just like you said, without the apple juice
since I don't have any though. They are 100% better. The fat just
hadn't broken down enough in them I guess. Anyway, thanks. I've got a
bunch of good ribs now.


Personally, I'da just left 'em on the Weber at 250 until
tender instead of wrapping them in foil and doing them in an
oven. And I won't even go into the "que'd vs steamed"
debate. ;-D



Well, he did say that he cooked them yesterday, if you'll recall. I
figgered that the leftovers had been in the fridge overnight, and, in my
experience, putting cold, under-done meat back on a grill is an
invitation to further disaster. I'd rather trust an oven over a grill
when it comes to re-cooking something that wasn't quite done, yet. The
foil trick helps to conserve what moisture is left in the meat, too.
(What if he'd already slice 'em up? I've used this trick to save a
hunk of meat, on occasion, when I mis-judged the cooking time and ended
up with something underdone.

Stan

Ah, nope. That post appearently was deleted off of the
server before I got there. I "pieced" together things and
must have missed that.

I've not had that happen and had to deal with things the
next day. Do you think that the oven would be preferable
over bringing them to room temp and then back in the smoker?

Although, I could see where that may have a tendancy to
yield a dry result.


Exactly. Since Stephen seemed to be a bit inexperienced, the foil method
was the logical - and safer - choice, under the circumstances. It also
speeds up the cooking time a bit, if that might be a consideration.
Apparently, it worked out good for him.

--
Stan Marks

A waist is a terrible thing to mind.
  #10 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 11:01 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 1,544
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?

Duwop wrote:
"Steve Wertz" wrote in message

On Sun, 26 Feb 2006 11:26:25 -0800, "Duwop"
wrote:


260-280? I was getting some tough jerky strips on the top of the bone at
temps that high on my cooker. Keeping it below 250 does the trick for me.


I've cooked them as high as 300 for 2.5 hours and haven't had that
problem. I usually do spares at about 260. I used to do them
lower, but they come out the same - just take longer.



Maybe the humidity down there in Texas helps? Keeps the chef damp anyway,
all that sweat rolling off onto the meat may help avoid the problem I saw
(could this be the origin of brining?). Or is it that you only need 100F of
heat to get to 250-300 under that sun?

Sorry,

Kinda,


Dale


Heh, same deal here in Tampa.

My cooker will sit at 150 all day with no fire in it.

--
TFM®
  #11 (permalink)  
Old 27-02-2006, 11:39 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 469
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?


On 26-Feb-2006, "Duwop" wrote:

"Steve Wertz" wrote in message
...
On 26 Feb 2006 10:38:57 -0800, wrote:

I made a bunch of spare-ribs yesterday (10 pounds). I put a brown
sugar/salt rub on them and smoked them in my weber. I put all the
coals off to one side, with a drip pan under the other side, and put
them all in a rib rack over the drip pan. Put soaked chips on the
coals. and put the lid on. After an hour, the coals were still burning
pretty good so I put more chips on and put the lid on for another hour
or so. Took them off and ate. They were good I guess but really
tough. Any ideas as to why this happened? Did I not cook them long
enough? or too long maybe?

I made ribs a few months ago and they were perfect. The only thing I
can think I did different was I was only making one small rack that
time.


Spare ribs are done when the ends of the ribs are exposed about
.75", or so. Spare ribs take 3.5-4 hours at 260-280. Your temp
was probably higher last time.

-sw


260-280? I was getting some tough jerky strips on the top of the bone at
temps that high on my cooker. Keeping it below 250 does the trick for me.

YMMV I guess.

--


I cook ribs between 250° and 300°F all the time and there's nothing wrong
with the ribs I cook. I'm going to start five racks this morning. Two beef
back ribs and three spares. My ribs typically take four hours, more or less.
They're done when they crack easily when bent sharply. They come out
tender enough to pull the meat off the bones with my fingers.

Beginners find it difficult to resist peeking frequently. Fight the urge.
Opening the cooker several times during a cook really "F@#$S" things up.
All guestimates of time and temp go right out the window. Surest way I
know to make dry tough 'Q'.

--
Brick(I'm paddling as fast as I can)
  #12 (permalink)  
Old 28-02-2006, 12:05 PM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Posts: 469
Default Why did my spare-ribs turn out tough?


On 27-Feb-2006, Steve Wertz wrote:

On Mon, 27 Feb 2006 11:39:47 GMT, "Brick"
wrote:

I cook ribs between 250° and 300°F all the time and there's nothing wrong
with the ribs I cook. I'm going to start five racks this morning. Two
beef
back ribs and three spares. My ribs typically take four hours, more or
less.
They're done when they crack easily when bent sharply. They come out
tender enough to pull the meat off the bones with my fingers.


Thanks Brick ;-) Like Big Jim's Brisket, cooked at a higher than
normal temps, my ribs are just fine cooked at a higher temp than
most people think is acceptable.

I've done them 8 hours at 220, and 4 hours at 270. I'll take the
4 hour ribs any day, especially when I'm the one cooking. Heck,
after 7-8 hours I'd be so drunk I forgot all about the ribs
(unless it was Sunday and I couldn't buy beer until noon).

-sw


I got my comeuppance yesterday Steve. Two racks of Beef Back Ribs
got done in a little over two hours, but two racks of spares took six
hours and one had the audacity to require 6 and a half. Go figure.
temp at the stack (NBS) was 240 to 260 the whole time, meaning
that the grid temp was 260 to 280.

--
Brick(I'm paddling as fast as I can)
 




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