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Saucy and sweet or dry with a little kick; two rib seasonings that will have you going back for seconds

The Gentleman Farmer in Maine shares two rib seasoning recipes on 207.

PORTLAND, Maine — BARBECUED PORK RIBS

Ingredients: 

One rack of pork spare ribs or 3-4 pounds of country style pork “ribs” 

For barbecue sauce:

  • 1  14.5 oz can of tomato sauce 
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (gently tamped) 
  • 3/4 cup cider vinegar 
  • 1 to 2 tablespoons molasses 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder 
  • Optional - 2 teaspoons mustard (either dried or prepared) 

For dry rub:

  • 1 tablespoon Mexican Chili powder (or regular if that’s what you have) 
  • 1 tablespoon Aleppo pepper 
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder 
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder 
  • 2 tablespoons sweet paprika 
  • 2 tablespoons dried mustard 
  • 1 teaspoon salt 

Preparation and Cooking:

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F.

These ribs can be made with either the wet sauce that cooks down to a sticky, sweet, finger licking, deliciousness OR the dry seasoning mix which becomes a savory, base of goodness.  

For the barbecue sauce:

Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and bring slowly to a low boil while stirring constantly. When the sauce reaches a boil, turn off the heat and remove it from the burner. 

Fold the edges of the foil up around the ribs to create a lip about an inch high. Gently pour barbecue sauce over the ribs, lifting them with a fork or tongs to ensure that all sides are coated. Place the second piece of foil over the ribs and very gently bend the sides down (being careful not to lose the sauce from around the ribs. You should have a cup or so of the sauce left.

For the dry rub:

combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix thoroughly. 

Rinse and gently pat the ribs dry with a paper towel. Place the ribs bone side down on a sheet pan or casserole pan the has been lined with foil. 

Sprinkle the rub over the meat, ensuring that all sides are well coated. Place the second piece of aluminum foil over the meat and gently fold the edges together to loosely seal it into a packet.

Baking:

Place the ribs in the 300-degree oven for about 3-1/2 hours. If using the sauce method, remove the aluminum foil covering and cook for another 1/2 hour uncovered. Or if using the dry rub, leave covered and cook for a total of four hours.

Stacy’s favorite option is to sprinkle the meat with the dry rub and allow to rest refrigerated for several hours or overnight. Then follow the sauce method for baking. This gives the best flavor combination of both the dry rub and the sauce.

If you don’t have all of these ingredients, (like Aleppo pepper), you can leave it out or add red pepper flakes or cayenne for heat.  It’ll still be delicious!

Serve with coleslaw, baked beans, and cornbread for a real Southern-style meal.

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