Wednesday, 22 August 2012

A&W Root Beer Pork Ribs on a Weber Q

Here's a great recipe I recently tried out and adapted from several recipe's I read re Cola Pork Ribs. I did this low and slow for about 4.5 hours on the Weber Q220.

Marinade 2 racks of American style pork ribs for about 2-4 hours. For the marinade I used the below:
    • 1 can of A&W root beer (or Cola if you don't have root beer)
    • 1/2 cup or 1 cup tomato sauce or tomato paste. (depending on your taste)
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 2 tbs salt
    • 1 tbs pepper
    • 1 tbs mustard powder
    • refrigerate in fridge
After 2-4 hours in the marinade, remove and pat dry with paper towel (save the marinade for later). Add mustard and dry rub on the 2 racks of ribs. Rubs can be what you like. I used a rub for which contained your normal salt, various peppers, paprika, and a few other spices. I also added some freshly chopped rosemary. It is important to add mustard in the rub as it helps bind and crust the ribs in the first stage of cooking. You will not taste the mustard in the end product.

Ribs marinated and dry rubbed

I used a baking tray under the ribs and added water, apple juice, and if you have some wood chips to add some smoke to the cooking process. The water helps to prevent dryness in the ribs and they should come out a little moist.
Set up your Weber Q with double layer foil and the trivet on top of it and preheat at low for 10mins. Then I added the baking tray with another trivet on top of it to hold the ribs away from the water. So it should be foil, trivet, baking tray, trivet then meat. Set the Weber to the lowest setting and try to maintain the temperature around 130-135C (or 275F). Cook for about 3 hours or until the bark forms and the meat starts pulling away from the bone.

Ribs on the trivet starting to cook


Maintain temp at 135'C (275F)

Ribs after about 2.5 hours

 While the ribs are cooking, prepare the sauce for the ribs. Use the earlier marinade left after marinating the ribs and bring it to boil. Add more brown sugar and salt/pepper to taste.  Remove 1 cup or more to use as a basting sauce to coat the ribs while cooking. I added more sugar to this to give the ribs a good glaze and charr the ribs a little more.

1 rack foiled with apple juice and 1 rack unfoiled

After 3 hours, I wanted to try foiling one of the racks and added apple juice in the foil to "steam" the ribs and make them moist and tender. Foil it for 1 hour and remove it to baste sauce on it for the final 30mins. For the unfoiled rack, I started basting with the basting sauce every 20 mins or so.

After 1 hour foiling, remove the foiled rack and started basting with sauce. This will start to brown up the ribs and give it a good glaze and charring. After about 25mins, I increased the heat in the last 10mins to give it more charring
Basting ribs in the sauce

Ribs - using foil

Ribs - unfoiled

There was a difference in taste for both racks even though the basting sauce was the same. The foiling made a difference. We both liked the unfoiled version. However, I think the foiled rib rack probably needed another 30mins or so more time to charr. That will be an experiment the next time I cook these yummy ribs up. Both were tender and juicy and not dry at all. Keep the sauce thin, you want to taste the meat. You can have the left over sauce on the side if anyone wants extra sauce for their ribs.

Some bbq tips:

  • BBQ is ready when it’s ready (no need to hurry - have more beer) 
  • Less is more (less smoke, less rub, less add-ons) 
  • Too tender is good! 
  • Foiling is good! 
  • Grilling is NOT barbequing; BBQ is low-and-slow 
  • Always have FUN when you BBQ even if results are otherwise!

1 comment:

  1. Actually grilling is a form of BBQ just as low and slow smoke roasting is a form of BBQ. There are other forms of BBQ also depending on location such as spit roasting and Churassco.

    Nice looking ribs though