Lone Star Spareribs (Smoke & Spice Cookbook)

3 full slabs of pork spareribs, St. Louis cut (trimmed of the chine bone and brisket flap), preferably 3 pounds each or less
Barbecued Rib Rub
1/3 cup ground black pepper
¼ cup paprika
2 Tablespoons sugar
1 Tablespoon salt
1 Tablespoon chili powder
1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder
1 ½ teaspoons onion powder

Basic Beer Mop (Optional)
12 ounces beer
½ cup cider vinegar
½ cup water
¼ cup oil, preferably canola or corn
½ medium onion
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 Tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 Tablespoon Barbecued Rib Rub

The night before you plan to barbecue, combine the rub ingredients in a small bowl. Apply the rub evenly to the ribs, reserving about half the spice mixture. Place the slabs in a plastic bag and refrigerate them overnight.

Before you begin to barbecue, take the ribs from the refrigerator. Pat them down with the remaining rub, reserving 1 Tablespoon of it if you plan to use the mop. Let the ribs sit at room temperature for 30 to 40 minutes. Prepare your Hasty-Bake to cook with indirect heat (with the heat deflector in place over the coals), bringing the temperature to 200 to 220°F.

If you are going to baste the ribs, mix together the ingredients in a saucepan. Warm the mop liquid over low heat.

Transfer the meat to the Hasty-Bake. Cook the ribs for 3 to 5 hours, turning and basting them with the mop about once an hour. When ready, the meat should be well-done and pulling away from the bones. Allow the slabs to sit for 10 minutes before slicing them into individual ribs.

Tip: You may want to adjust the cooking time for your taste. Spareribs are usually done in 2 ½ to 3 hours, when you can crack them apart with a gloved hand. At that point, the meat is firm, chewy and juicy. If you prefer your ribs crunchier, leaner and falling apart, cook them longer (about 4 hours for a 3-pound slab or up to 5 hours for a larger slab).

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