Brother Bill Watson's Dry Ribs

4 pounds pork loin baby back ribs

2 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon paprika
4 tablespoon sage 
3/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon black pepper

1.  Cut ribs into 4 portions. Place ribs in shallow dish.

2.  In small bowl, combine brown sugar, paprika, salt, cumin and black pepper; rub evenly over meaty side of ribs. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for 4 to 24 hours.

3.  At least 1 hour before grilling, soak wood chips in enough water to cover. Drain before using. In charcoal grill with a cover, place preheated coals around a drip pan for medium indirect heat. Add 1/2-inch hot water to drip pan. Sprinkle half of the drained wood chips over the coals.

4.  Place ribs, bone side down, on grill rack over drip pan. Cover and grill for 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until ribs are tender. Add more preheated coals (use a hibachi or a metal chimney starter to preheat coals) and wood chips; turn ribs halfway through grilling.

      Note: For gas grills, preheat and then turn off any burners directly below where the food will go. The heat circulates inside the grill, so turning the food is not necessary.

Serves 4.

For gas grills, preheat and then turn off any burners directly below where the food will go. The heat circulates inside the grill, so turning the food is not necessary.  

Brother Bill gave me this recipe in 1968.  We lived next to them while they were in Paragould.  He cooked in a homemade grill.  It was made from an old refrigerator.

Gary and Bonnie McClure



Barbecue (BBQ) definitions

A Barbecue - the social occasion at which food is barbecued. The Barbecue has certain characteristics that distinguish it from other food-related gatherings such as fish fries, potluck dinners, cocktail parties, and formal sit-down meals.

Barbecuing - the performance of the act of cooking by the Barbecue method.

Barbecue -  the term BBQ, sometimes spelled Barbecue, is frequently misunderstood. It is often applied to anything cooked on a grill or in an oven, if a spicy tomato based sauce is applied. Barbecue (BBQ) is a method of cooking, not a dish, or a cooking device. The true original method of barbecue slowly smokes meats at a temperature range between 190 and 230. The meat is cooked using indirect heat. Smoke and low-level heat generated from burning wood coals, off to the sides, will slowly cook the meat while also penetrating the meat with a wonderful wood (not smoke) flavor. For ribs, the process will take between 4 and 6 hours depending on thickness, weather and wind conditions, and how well the heat is maintained at an ideal temperature of 190 to 230.

Pit Roasting - the cooking meat and/or vegetables, wrapped and placed in a hole in the ground, under a cover of hot coals. Due to the tight wrapping and the low temperatures, the meat is actually braising, cooking in moist heat, rather than roasting.

Now for what Barbecue is - there is a distinct difference between grilling and Barbecuing. Grilling is done over the direct heat of a fire. The object is to sear the outside and concentrate the juices on the inside. The grilled flavor is caused by the toasting the outside of the food. The process is similar to the way that brown crust forms a loaf of bread as it is baked. In grilling, oils and fats are rendered out of the meats and drip through the cooking grate into the fire.

Barbecue (BBQ) on the other hand is the process of cooking meat at low temperatures for long periods of time. Large cuts of otherwise tough though very flavorful meat is cooked by the heat and smoke of a hardwood fire over an open pit (rather than a closed smoker) or a hole in the ground, at low temperatures (210 or less) for a long time, keeping the meat moist, with doneness determined by the tenderness of the meat.