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Squaring Off St. Louis Style Spare Ribs

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    Squaring Off St. Louis Style Spare Ribs

    I generally BBQ/smoke St. Louis cut spare ribs rather than Baby Backs, and the cuts I get always include the part above the bones that includes those little pieces of gristle. I was recently asked if I would mind trimming that part off so the rack is a nice rectangle without the gristle.

    My question is not how to trim them. My question is: Is there a good way to still cook those trimmings? I hate to throw away perfectly good rib meat just because some people don't care to suck it off of those pieces of gristle.

    Does this question make sense to anyone?

    #2
    LoL. When I have "extra" pieces of meat like this I'll season them up and wrap in foil and hang over the top of the rebar. This cooks faster and we consider this a chefs treat.

    Comment


    • HawkerXP
      HawkerXP commented
      Editing a comment
      I assumed you were talking PBC.

    #3
    Your question makes sense to me! I do pretty much the same thing as Hawker. I leave the tips unwrapped, but put them on the upper rack of my Hasty Bake charcoal grill. They don't need to be cooked as long -- when they look nicely smoky and cooked through, I declare they're done. They're a nice treat about halfway through the cook.

    If you don't care to eat the tips as a treat or have too much to enjoy right then, you could pick off the meat and freeze for making soup or BBQ sandwiches -- any recipe where you'd use pulled pork.

    Some taverns and small restaurants around here sometimes offer rib tips as a special. There are folks who don't mind getting messy eating them, cuz tips are so tender and good.

    Comment


    • Attjack
      Attjack commented
      Editing a comment
      Once a butcher told me she prefers the tips rather than the ribs.

    #4
    Those are tips. Like everyone says, they’re done pretty quickly. You can grill them instead of bbq them. And they’re delicious.

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      #5
      I love cooking St. Louis spares. But my wife won’t eat them because of those end parts or tips with the cartilage. She always insisted on baby backs as a result. Then I started trimming the tips off and didn’t even tell her. She is none the wiser and raves about my ribs. The tips are a mid cook snack for me. 👍

      Comment


        #6
        They make a good grilled snack.
        Happy grilling to you, and PBR too.

        Comment


          #7
          Cook em Danno! Just like every one said. They don’t like em, their loss.

          Comment


          • JCBBQ
            JCBBQ commented
            Editing a comment
            I love a good Hawaii Five-O pun. Made me grin from ear to ear.
            Last edited by JCBBQ; March 23, 2021, 10:36 AM.

          #8
          Originally posted by MarkN View Post
          I generally BBQ/smoke St. Louis cut spare ribs rather than Baby Backs, and the cuts I get always include the part above the bones that includes those little pieces of gristle. I was recently asked if I would mind trimming that part off so the rack is a nice rectangle without the gristle.

          My question is not how to trim them. My question is: Is there a good way to still cook those trimmings? I hate to throw away perfectly good rib meat just because some people don't care to suck it off of those pieces of gristle.

          Does this question make sense to anyone?
          If the part with the cartilage is still there, then those are not Saint Louis cut - they are just spare ribs. Lately, I just buy spares, and trim them down to Saint Louis cut myself. And yes - I smoke that part that is cut off - the rib tips - and eat that myself.

          I suggest browsing Youtube to find one of many videos. The basic sequence is:
          1. Cut off the flap on the back.
          2. Pull off the membrane.
          3. Feel for the gap between the rib bones and that long peice of cartilage, and then cut through that area, for the full length of the rack of ribs.
          4. Cut off the flap at the end that has the last little bone or two in it.
          Here is a good web page and video on the subject:

          https://www.seriouseats.com/2014/05/...uis-style.html

          Comment


          • Jfrosty27
            Jfrosty27 commented
            Editing a comment
            I hear what you’re saying Jim. But it seems Costco is cheating on their STL’s. They leave a bit of the tips on there that I need to trim off.

          • jfmorris
            jfmorris commented
            Editing a comment
            Jfrosty27 It's been a long time since I bought them at Costco - Sam's Club is closer, and their spare rib pricing is super cheap, so I usually just get those and trim myself. Sounds like Costco is doing that to add some weight to the ribs maybe?

          #9
          I cut them into smaller pieces then steam them with black bean sauce and chiles "dim sum style" and serve over white rice.

          Comment


          • fzxdoc
            fzxdoc commented
            Editing a comment
            Oh golly. That sounds good.

            K.

          • Dewesq55
            Dewesq55 commented
            Editing a comment
            fzxdoc - It really is!
            Last edited by Dewesq55; March 24, 2021, 12:42 PM.

          #10
          I've thrown them in the smoker like others have said. My dad used to season with salt and pepper, put them in a glass baking dish, cover with BBQ sauce cut with water or apple juice to thin it, cover with tin foil, then put in the oven on low heat for a few hours. Tender and delicious.

          Comment


            #11
            Another tasty little tidbit on spare ribs is the boneless flap on some spare ribs -- not sure enough of bovine anatomy to know what it's called. I trim that flap off and season and smoke it along with the tips. It makes a nice nibble. I've cooked it flat but I've tried rolling it up and cooking it that way.

            Comment


            • HawkerXP
              HawkerXP commented
              Editing a comment
              Oh yeah.

            #12
            Our local grocery store typically has the tips already removed.

            Comment


              #13
              Echoing what everyone else said about cooking them off. I love them so much. I actually buy the whole rack and trim off the tips. Hoard them until I have several pounds, then cook them all off. Serve with all kinds of fixin’s. Big hit at super bowl, when I used to throw parties.

              It’s messy, but good. Kinda like a crab boil.

              Comment


              • FireMan
                FireMan commented
                Editing a comment
                I have never bought em any other way but full slab. Yup. Trim it yerself, win, win.

              #14
              I treat them like burnt ends - get them almost done, throw em in a foil pan with some sauce, finish and eat while the rack is cooking

              Comment


                #15
                I usually get St Louis (or semi St Louis) and recently picked up some Spare Ribs. I cooked em whole and then cut that section of before I cut them into individual ribs. The cartilage portion went to me as I love picking at bones and have been known to actually chew up cartilage (though I have been trained by women-folk not to do that in polite company).

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