Saturday, June 19, 2010

Raichlen's Gaucho-Style Beef Ribs

Last night, Alexis and I took a trip to Brazil.

I've been enjoying Steven Raichlen's newest tome, Planet Barbecue! It is a culinary world tour of live fire cooking and I've been getting my epicurean passport stamped up lately. Last night, I had two racks of beef back ribs (the part trimmed off of a whole ribeye) and Alexis had gotten me a rotisserie attachment for Father's Day so I decided to follow Raichlen to Brazil for Gaucho-Style Beef Ribs.

These are beef ribs seasoned simply with coarse salt and pepper cooked over an oak fire. Sure, that might not sound like much of a "recipe" but it's more about process. The book recommends using a rotisserie for closer to authentic preparation but also gives a method for indirect cooking if you don't have a rotisserie.

So I threaded a rack onto the rod as Raichlen describes and used my rotisserie for the first time on my Brinkmann Professional Charcoal Grill. It smelled and sounded so good as the meat took a ferris wheel ride over the gates of hell.

Planet Barbecue! advises to cook these over medium heat (325-350f). Unfortunately, I rarely use this grill since I got my Big Green Egg and let the temps run away from me. I used a full chimney of lump and briquettes and even with both vents shut down, the temps skyrocketed to 550f.

The ribs ended up being a bit overdone despite my efforts but that was totally on me and my lack of fire management. Next time, and I will try this again, I would use a half of a chimney to get the lower temps.

Then I made the second rack of ribs on the Egg using the indirect method (mostly). As you can see, salt and pepper only.

I've done beef ribs on the Egg a few times but at smoking temperatures. This time I was running it at 325f with lump coal and Jack Daniels oak barrel wood chips.

When the ribs were almost done, I strayed from the method in the book. I wanted to get some direct heat on the ribs like the ones on the rotisserie so I switched to direct heat and grilled the ribs for about 90 seconds per side to finish them up.

Click this and just listen. If pictures are "food porn", then this is the sound track.

This time they were perfect! Trevor called them "steak ribs" which is really what they are.

Want to get your BBQ passport inked up? Pick up a copy of Planet Barbecue! Whether you are a novice griller or a serious Q enthusiast, you'll enjoy it. Steven Raichlen will be in the area for the next week or so doing book signings so get a signed copy.


Dayton, OH: Books & Co, 4453 Walnut Street
Presentation and Book signing, 7:00pm

Franklin, TN: Williams Sonoma, 1800 Galleria Boulevard
Book signing, 3:00 pm

Louisville, KY: Williams Sonoma, 5000 Shelbyville Road
Booksigning, 2:00pm

Lexington, KY: Williams Sonoma, 3473 Nicholasville Rd
Book signing, 6:00pm

Atlanta, GA: Sur La Table Perimeter Mall
Book signing, 6:00pm

FTC Disclosure Notice: I received my copy of Planet Barbecue! for free from the publisher for review a few months ago but everything I have said is my honest opinion. I plan to buy a copy at the Nashville (Franklin) book signing to give away so I can quit saying I got it for free, because it really is a great bbq book. I highly recommend it.