Primal Grill with Steven Raichlen
Season 3 in High Definition
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Primal Grill is filmed at Esplendor Resort in Rio Rico.
Episode: 211 :: UP IN SMOKE
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COUSIN DAVE'S CHOCOLATE CHILI RIBS
Source: Raichlen on Ribs, by Steven Raichlen (Workman, 2006)
Method: Indirect Grilling
Advance
Preparation: 
Category: Meat
Ingredients:
3 to 6 canned chipotle peppers with 1 tablespoon of their juice
1/2 medium onion, coarsely chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 cloves garlic, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro, plus 1/4 cup chopped cilantro for garnish
1/2 ounce semisweet chocolate, coarsely grated or cut into pieces
2 strips (each 1/2 by 1-1/2 inches) fresh lemon zest, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon pure chili powder, such as ancho chili powder
2 teaspoons coarse salt (kosher or sea)
1 teaspoon lemon pepper
2 to 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 racks baby back pork ribs (4 to 5 pounds total)
Lime wedges, for serving

Other Items Needed:
1-1/2 cups wood chips or chunks (preferably oak), soaked for 1 hour in water to cover, then drained

Directions:
Place the chipotles and their juice, onion, garlic, 1/4 cup of cilantro, chocolate, lemon zest, brown sugar, chili powder, salt, and lemon pepper in a food processor and puree, adding enough oil to make a thick paste.

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.

Using a rubber spatula, spread the chipotle paste on both sides of the racks. Cover the ribs with plastic wrap and let marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or as long as overnight. The longer the ribs marinate, the richer the flavor will be.

Set up the grill for indirect grilling and preheat to medium (325 to 350 degrees F). Place a large drip pan in the center of the grill under the grate.

When ready to cook, brush and oil the grill grate. Place the ribs bone side down in the center of the grate over the drip pan and away from the heat. (If your grill has limited space, stand the racks of ribs upright in a rib rack.) If cooking on a charcoal grill and using wood chips, toss half of them on each mound of coals. Cover the grill and cook the ribs until well browned, cooked through, and tender enough to pull apart with your fingers, 1-1/4 to 1-1/2 hours. When the ribs are done, the meat will have shrunk back from the ends of the bones by about 1/4 inch. If using a charcoal grill, replenish the coals as needed.

Transfer the ribs to a large platter or cutting board. Let the ribs rest for a few minutes, and then cut the racks in half or into individual ribs. Sprinkle the ribs with the remaining cilantro. Serve at once with lime wedges.

Variation: How to cook Chipotle Chocolate Ribs in a Smoker: Set up and light the smoker according to the manufacturers instructions and preheat to low (225 to 250 degrees F). Place the ribs in the smoker bone side down and smoke until cooked through, 4 to 5 hours. Youll need to replenish the wood chips or chunks after the first and second hour of smoking and to replenish the coals every hour.
 
CHARROS (TEX-MEX BEANS)
Serves: 8-10
Category: Vegetarian
Ingredients:
1 pound (2 cups) dried pinto beans
1 medium onion, cut in half
2 bay leaves
2 cloves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

To finish the charros:
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or butter
3 strips bacon, cut crosswise into strips
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium tomato, seeded and finely chopped
2 to 4 jalapeno chilies, seeded and diced (for spicier charros leave the seeds in)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro


Directions:
Place of Origin : Texas

Texas-style brisket or ribs without charros is a little like a cowboy without a Stetson hat or Tony Romas. These soulful spicy pinto beans turn up wherever briskets or ribs are roasted to smoky perfection or cabritos (baby goats) come off the turn spit crackling crisp. Native to northern Mexico, charros have become an essential part of Texas barbecue. But unlike the sweet baked beans served with Southern-style barbecue, charros contain not a whit of sugar-which makes them the perfect accompaniment to beef. A simple version might contain a little onion or jalapeno for flavor; the following recipe offers a tongue tingling blast of bacon, tomato, and chilies. By the way, dont be surprised by the soupy consistency of the beans: charros are always served with lots of flavorful broth.

Tips: The purist will want to start with dry pinto beans and cook them from scratch. Not only does this give you the satisfaction of doing the job right. You can also control the sodium (most canned beans are off the chart in salt content) and you get a wonderful bean broth. However, in our hurried age, not everyone will have the time to cook dried beans, so I offer a highly tasty version of charros made with canned beans below.


1. Spread the beans on a baking sheet and pick through them, removing any twigs or pebbles. Rinse the beans in a colander. Place in a large bowl with cold water to cover by 4 inches. Soak the beans in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight.
2. Drain the beans in a colander, rinse well, and place them in a large pot with water to cover by 4 inches. Pin the bay leaves to the onion halves with cloves and add to the beans. Gradually bring the beans to a boil. Reduce the heat and gently simmer the beans, loosely covered, until tender (you should be able to crush one between your thumb and forefinger.) The beans should be soupy, but not watery. Add a little salt and pepper.
3. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a skillet. Add the bacon and cook until lightly browned, 3 minutes. Add the onion and garlic and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the tomato, jalapenos, and cilantro and cook until the tomato juices have evaporated, 3 minutes. Stir the mixture into the beans and simmer for 10 minutes. Correct the seasoning, adding the salt and pepper to taste: the beans should be highly seasoned. Serve the charros in small bowls (to hold the broth.)
 
QUICK CHARROS
Serves: 8 to 10
Category: Vegetarian
Ingredients:
Try to find a low sodium bean for this recipe. The best place to look for low sodium beans is at a natural foods store.

Two 15 ounce cans cooked pinto beans
2 cups chicken or veal stock (for really great charros, used smoked chicken stock)

To finish the charros:
1 tablespoon vegetable oil or butter
3 strips bacon, cut crosswise into strips
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium tomato, seeded and finely chopped
2 to 4 jalapeno chilies, seeded and finely chopped (for spicier charros, leave the seeds in.)
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Directions:
1.Rinse the beans in a colander under cold running water. (This removes some of the excess salt.) Transfer the beans to a saucepan and add the stock. Simmer for 5 minutes.

2. Cook the flavorings as described in Step 3 above. Finish the beans as described above, adding plenty of salt and pepper to taste.
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