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Smoke is the soul of true barbecue. As you climb the ladder of barbecue enlightenment, you’ll want to be able to smoke a variety of foods in a variety of grills and smokers. This show explores four diverse foods: ribs, turkey, salmon, and even a dessert—prepared in a traditional offset barrel smoker, a water smoker, a charcoal grill, and a stovetop smoker. Sorry…no gas grills allowed.
1. Make the rub. Place the seasoned salt, pepper, sugar, paprika, garlic powder, meat tenderizer, and cayenne in a bowl and stir to mix, breaking up any lumps with your fingers.
2. Prepare the ribs. Place a rack of ribs meat side down on a baking sheet. Remove the thin, papery membrane from the back of the rack by inserting a slender implement, such as a butter knife or the tip of a meat thermometer, under it. The best place to start is on one of the middle bones. Using a dishcloth, paper towel, or pliers to gain a secure grip, peel off the membrane. Repeat with the remaining rack.
3. Arrange the ribs on a baking sheet. Sprinkle on both sides with the rub, rubbing the spices into the meat.
4. Set up your smoker and preheat to 225 to 250 degrees.
5. Arrange the seasoned ribs bone side up in your smoker. Smoke until nicely browned and very tender, 5 to 6 hours in all, turning the ribs over half way through. After the first hour, mist or mop the ribs with beer; after that, mist or mop every hour until you apply the barbecue sauce.
6. Brush the ribs with the barbecue sauce for the last 30 to 45 minutes of smoking.
7. Transfer the ribs to a large platter or cutting board. Let the ribs rest for a few minutes, then cut the racks in half or cut into individual ribs. Serve with extra barbecue sauce.
8. Spicy Apple Barbecue Sauce (Direction:)
9. Place the ketchup, apple juice, molasses, vinegar, brown and granulated sugar, chile powder, celery seed, cinnamon, and cloves in a large heavy saucepan and gradually bring to a boil over medium heat, whisking to mix.
10. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the sauce until thick and richly flavored, about 40 minutes, whisking often. Correct the seasoning, adding salt and pepper to taste. The sauce should be highly seasoned.