Cookbook:Secrets to Great Ribs
Note: this article is only concerned with pork ribs.
Never boil ribs! Boil ribs and you lose! Just pretend the ribs were a nice, juicy, ribeye. Then would you boil it? I didn't think so.
If you don't want to have to pay attention to a smoker or a grill all day long, then do it in a 275° oven. Whatever you do, do not BOIL ribs! Just step away from a person that says you should boil ribs. See, since water leaches all the flavor from them, you'll be eating something like wet paper.
If the weather isn't very good for grilling, then just place a roasting rack in a roasting pan and place wood chips under it. Just be sure to open a window and turn on a fan just in case. Also keep a fire extinguisher around.
Rubs are classic rib seasonings. There are some pretty good rubs on this website, but avoid salt-based commercial rubs. If you can't find one that you like, just make your own. Things that work well in rubs include paprika, chipotle powder, garlic, cayenne pepper, brown sugar, chili powder, and smoke powder. Rubs make a nice crust on the surface of the meat, and a good one will make you look like a pro.
Don't put a sauce on the meat before you cook it! The sauce will burn and the meat will either be underdone or still tough. Just brush on a sauce generously once it's done cooking, then place it on a grill or under the broiler. Even then, you don't want to use a commercial sugar-based sauce.
If you look at the ingredients, the first thing you'll see is high fructose corn syrup, then tomato, then more sugar, then oil, salt, etc. Homemade sauces are much less sugary and aren't that hard to make.
Think all pork ribs are the same? Wrong. There are 3 different cuts of pork ribs: baby back/loin/back ribs, spareribs, and St. Louis ribs.
The baby back is a little more tender than the other ribs, takes flavor well, and cooks faster.
The sparerib is a little tougher, has a little cartilage, has a bit more meat on it, and takes longer to cook.
The St. Louis rib is just a sparerib with the tips and cartilage removed.
Hopefully you will get to work on some of your own lip-smacking ribs.