Primal Grill with Steven Raichlen
Season 3 in High Definition
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Primal Grill is filmed at Esplendor Resort in Rio Rico.
Source: Adapted from Raichlen on Ribs by Steven Raichlen (Workman, 2006)
Method: Spit-Roasting
Category: Meat
1 cup pineapple juice
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon sweet paprika
2 teaspoons coarse salt (kosher or sea)
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon fennel seed
1 teaspoon granulated onion or onion powder
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic or garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon caraway seed
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2 racks baby back pork ribs (4 to 5 pounds total)
Ginger-Pineapple-Rum Barbecue Sauce (recipe follows)

Other Items Needed:
Spray bottle (optional); 1-1/2 cups wood chips or chunks (optional;
preferably pecan or hickory), soaked for 1 hour in water to
cover, then drained

Place the pineapple juice in a spray bottle or in a bowl and set it aside.

Place the brown sugar, paprika, salt, cinnamon, fennel seed, granulated onion and garlic, caraway seed, ginger, pepper, and cloves in a small bowl and mix with your fingers, breaking up any lumps in the brown sugar.

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.

Sprinkle the rub over both sides of the ribs, rubbing it onto the meat. Cover the ribs with plastic wrap and refrigerate them while you set up the grill.

Thread the ribs onto the rotisserie spit: Place a rack of ribs bone side up on a work surface. Using a sharp, slender knife, make starter holes in the center of the meat between every 4th or 5th rib. Twist the knife blade to widen the holes; this will make it easier to insert the spit. Repeat with the remaining rack of ribs. Use an over and under weaving motion to thread the spit through the holes in the racks of ribs.

Set up the grill for spit roasting following the manufacturers instructions and preheat to high. Place a large drip pan in the center of the grill directly under the spit.

When ready to cook, attach the spit to the rotisserie mechanism, turn on the motor, and cover the grill. After 20 minutes, spray the ribs with the pineapple juice. Cook the ribs until they are golden brown and cooked through, 30 to 45 minutes, spraying with pineapple juice every 10 minutes.
When the ribs are done, the meat will have shrunk back from the ends of the bones by about 1/4 inch.

Just before you are ready to remove the ribs from the spit, brush them on both sides with the Ginger-Pineapple-Rum Barbecue Sauce. Let them continue to turn on the spit until the sauce is sizzling, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Transfer the spit with the ribs to a cutting board. Carefully remove the skewer, then let the ribs rest for a few minutes. Serve the racks, whole or cut into individual ribs, with the remaining Ginger-Pineapple-Rum Barbecue Sauce.
Ginger-Pineapple-Rum Barbecue Sauce
Category: Sauces
2 cups diced ripe pineapple
1 cup ginger marmalade
2 tablespoons kejap manis (sweet soy sauce) or Thai chile sauce, or
more to taste
1/2 cup dark rum
Coarse salt (kosher or sea) and freshly ground black pepper

Puree the pineapple in a food processor or blender. Pour it into a heavy nonreactive saucepan and bring to a boil over medium heat. Add the ginger marmalade and kejap manis. Let simmer until the marmalade melts, whisking to blend.

Increase the heat to high and whisk in the rum. Let the sauce boil until thick and richly flavored, 3 to 5 minutes. Taste the sauce for seasoning, adding more kejap manis as necessary and salt and pepper to taste (you may not need much salt on account of the soy sauce). Let the sauce cool to room temperature before serving. It can be refrigerated, covered, for several weeks. Let the sauce return to room temperature before using.
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