So, oven-roasted ribs are not a foreign concept to Al Dente HQ. Ideally, you would smoke them first and finish the ribs over fire to crisp them up. But, sometimes you don’t have the luxury of time. Or the desire to smoke your own kitchen out with the stovetop smoker. In that case, the oven it is.
The last time I did these, the flavor focus was Asian with Chinese five-spice and soy sauce. I opted for something a little more traditional with a base of Dijon mustard and a brown sugar-based rib rub that I picked up at Cochon Butcher in New Orleans. A light coating of barbecue sauce came in at the end to tie a bow on things.
I also adjusted the cooking time here. Rather than 3 hours at 300 degrees, I let this go for four at 275 with tenting to get these tender without drying out. The result were fall apart ribs that were moist throughout.
WHAT WORKED: The barbecue sauce. I’ve made my own in the past and typically prefer to use Dinosaur’s flagship sauce when making ribs. I wasn’t up for making my own and when I opened my fridge, all I found was a bottle of Sweet Baby Ray’s honey barbecue sauce. Combined with the brown sugar in the Cochon Super Bowl Rib Rub, it made for an wonderfully sweet finish with just a hint of heat from the Dijon and the cayenne in the rub.
WHAT DIDN’T: Not much. As always, I wish I had a second rack to work with.
WHAT DID THE WIFE SAY: She said they were the best I ever made. Woo-hah.
WILL IT MAKE ANOTHER APPEARANCE: You are asking if I will cook ribs again? Uh, yeah.
By Jared Paventi
- 3- to 4-pound rack of ribs, St. Louis-style, brisket bone removed
- 1/4 cup Dijon mustard
- 2 tsp. Liquid Smoke
- 2 to 3 tbsp. brown sugar-based rib rub
- 1/2 to 1 cup barbecue sauce
Preheat your oven to 275 degrees. Set a cooling rack inside of a foil-lined baking sheet. Use a large knife to split the rib rack in half and set on the cooling rack.
Whisk together Dijon mustard and Liquid Smoke, and brush both sides of the ribs. With the meaty-side up, sprinkle the ribs with the rub until well coated.
Turn on your broiler to high and set the oven rack to just below the heat. Broil the ribs until the rub has caramelized.
Move the pan to an oven rack at the center of the oven, return the oven to 275 degrees and roast for 4 hours. With 2 hours to go, tent with aluminum foil to prevent the ribs from drying out.
During the last 30 minutes, brush the top side of the ribs with barbecue sauce.
When roasting is complete, remove from the oven and let stand, tented, for 10 minutes. Serve with extra sauce for dipping.