There are a lot of folks who love the genuine taste of smoked ribs, but not too many people actually know how easy it is to make smoked pork ribs. And of those who do know, few of them know how to do it the right way. Most all of us can guess that making smoked ribs involves actual smoke, but you might be surprised to learn that a good portion of cooks prepare them completely indoors, void of all smoking. While this method does serve a single purpose - that of providing a meal, it really leaves a lot to be desired when compared to the outstanding taste that can be achieved by really smoking the ribs.
It is this same reason that when you visit various restaurants there seems to be a lack of interest in barbecue places. When we go out to eat, the smoked ribs places are usually easy to get into because there is plenty of parking and not too many crowds. The Mexican food places are packed. The Italian food places are packed. Waiting room only at the family menu style restaurants as well. Go figure. Not too many at the bbq joints, hmm wonder why? Could it be that they are cooking their barbecue pork ribs recipes in an oven? Of course they are .. you cannot really run a franchised restaurant successfully and have an open fire in the middle of the place. Just think of the liability insurance costs. Oh, sure, you can find the occasional ma and pa shop bbq place but they are rare. They have a tough time making a go of it because of the health and food safety laws that restaurants have to adhere to. Consequently, there are very few venues that provide you the ability to enjoy a quality smoked rib dinner. You could go to the bbq competitions (which are fun, by the way) but few of us have time to travel cross-country just for barbecued ribs. We need to reorganize our priorities if you ask me.
So what is the point of this line of reasoning? Well, the basic point is that, since it nearly impossible to find quality bbq ribs places, then that is all the more reason why you should learn the proper ways to make them yourself. And, given the current economy and the relatively inexpensive cost of the raw ribs, you just might find it to be not only fun and tasty, but also a money saver as well. Where we live, a single rack of good spare ribs can be purchased for under $12.00. Usually I buy at least two racks, sometimes three or four, depending on the price that day. Look for rib rack that are under $15.00 as a rule of thumb.
Potatoes or baked beans make an excellent side dish (even french fries are very good) and so all in all, we usually can get by feeding our family of six for under 30 bucks. Not too bad given how good smoked ribs are. If we go out to eat, the best deal we can find is usually a pizza buffet at Mazio's, which runs us about $48.00, but we do get all the drink refills for free and I love the all-you-can-eat types of places. Other than the pizza choice, a normal restaurant normally costs us about $75 to $90 for the six of us, including tip. That is high for us, so smoking ribs and brisket and chicken and the like is an excellent diversion and a cost effective one as well.
I will admit that it does take several hours or days to prepare smoked ribs so it is not an option if you are pressed for time, but smoking ribs can be not only a fun event but also a nice diversion from the ordinary. Put in your meal plan and check out some of my other posts if you would and learn some good techniques about smoking ribs. Eat well and enjoy:)