Friday, July 13, 2012

6 Pounds of Ribs

For my birthday last week, my wife took me to Costco and had me pick out a Traeger grill. Originally I was thinking of the Little Tex Elite but ended up with the Texas Grill. I liked the size and portability of Little Tex but then I found out that it uses the same amount of wood pellets and has almost half the rack space of Texas. I knew by the second time I used it, I would want the larger model. Why smoke 2 turkeys at once when you can smoke 3?

I could be a Model for Traeger; except then I might have to wash my hair and shave

Saturday morning was spent assembling the smoker. Not my favorite thing but a necessary evil in order to get you closer to smoking-smoking meat that is. Quite a sight when it was complete. It looked like it could swallow our other grill whole.

To break in the grill, I smoked some ribs. Having never cooked ribs before (except in class), I was a little lost. I made a rub with some Cajun spices and a lot of brown sugar. I was anticipating a sweet glaze on the ribs. My In-Laws had purchased a quarter cow and gave me the spare ribs.

First time cooking on the grill

To start, I smoked the ribs for 2 hours with hickory wood pellets. I then cooked for 3 more hours at 225 degrees. Yes, the grill has temperature settings. It was truly a work of art to watch the cooking process. The hickory smoke blowing in the air created the most beautiful aroma. When complete, I carved them and was amazed at the sheer amount of meat.

The final verdict: the meat was moist and tender but the flavor was missing. It seemed like none of the spice rub flavored the meat. I did learn a valuable lesson: attempting to flavor over 6 pounds of meat will take a lot more seasoning then what I am use to. A simple rub of spices on a steak or breast of chicken will suffice but not on this. I also should have placed the ribs in foil with some flavoring liquid with an hour to go.

5 hours later, the ribs are ready

So the meat did not turn out liked I had hoped but I love the grill. It's truly one of the best presents ever. Word had definitely spread overnight as the next morning, most people that I spoke with knew about the grill. Sounds like there will be many mouths to feed.

Happy Eating.

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