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Ribs the membrane

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    Ribs the membrane

    I have always pulled the membrane on ribs and always cut spares into st. lous and always trimmed the edges. I rarely cook back ribs but always pulled membranes on those.

    So I cooked a spare rack the opposite and thought I would share my experiences. Just seasoned and threw them on the smoke.

    1. The membrane was not necessarily really chewy but more a tough unpleasant crusty feel and off burnt almost flavor. Could still discard after cooking but proved to be more work than removing it from the start.
    2. Trimming. I noticed the full spares do not lend themselves to the bend test so probing for doneness is key. Also noticed the little pieces left on like the flaps ended up tasting somewhat burnt similar to the membrane.

    I knew people did all this work for a reason but wanted to experience it first hand to make sure all that work was worth it for me.

    Conclusion: worth the work!

    #2
    Thanks for the work. I always remove the membrane because that's what I was taught to do. I often wondered what the outcome would be if I didn't.

    Comment


      #3
      I kind of agree with BriggsBBQ . Being a lazy guy I've done them both ways. But I don't have a big problem with the irregular parts - I generally trim them and smoke another time as "chef's perks".

      Comment


      • BriggsBBQ
        BriggsBBQ commented
        Editing a comment
        They go great in some beans too. I am working on a bean recipe that uses meathead's cured bacon. I cold smoke it. But for beans I would do the hot smoke.

      • Thunder77
        Thunder77 commented
        Editing a comment
        That's what I like to do with that flap of meat. Cut it off for a chef's treat!

      #4
      Every once in a while I'll get a rack where the %&$*# membrane just refuses to cooperate and let me remove it. I'll try and then try a couple of more times without success. In this case I'll just make a cut through the membrane between the ribs to allow the fat to render out. I'm sure this suggestion came from MH but I can't remember exactly where.

      Not a "huge" taste/texture difference doing ribs this way. I more disappointed in myself for being defeated by a stupid piece of membrane.

      Comment


      • EdF
        EdF commented
        Editing a comment
        It does work, though.

      • Mosca
        Mosca commented
        Editing a comment
        I do the same. I don't like eating around the little piece of membrane, but the ribs taste okay to me.

      • binarypaladin
        binarypaladin commented
        Editing a comment
        Thanks. I'm gonna tuck that away for future reference.

      #5
      I always remove membranes...back or spares. I do find the back ribs are WAY easier to remove than spares...but I do the work up-front!

      Comment


        #6
        I'm also suspicious that some folks spend a lot of time trying to remove "the membrane" when it has already been done by the processor/butcher...

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          #7
          I have noticed that most BBQ joints dont remove it. I guess if you are doing 50 slabs at a time, it can really slow the process down. Some times I do, sometimes I dont. It depends on where and how I put the rub on. If I am doing it at the smoker, I usually slice open the top of the cryovac and apply the rub without flipping it over. It does get burnt and chewy at times, other times it isnt even noticable

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            #8
            I too will always remove the membrane.

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              #9
              Most BBQ joints do not remove membrane. Aaron Franklin specifically notes he does not remove the membrane due to volume of ribs cooked.

              I usually remove it because I don't cook more than 3 or 4 racks at a time, but the last time I cooked, I removed them on the back ribs, and didn't remove on the spare ribs, and I could taste no real difference.

              Comment


                #10
                Thanx for doing this. I will continue to remove the membrane.

                Comment


                  #11
                  Since finding Amazingribs I remove the membrane. I think it's more consistent that way..

                  Comment


                    #12
                    This thread is a little amazing. I think I've done everything mentioned here, from lazy to havin trouble to burnt ends to trimming & not. I like it when I can get the membrane off & when I do trim the ends, but it more is a feel for the moment. AND I do love dem WIBS!

                    Comment


                    • EdF
                      EdF commented
                      Editing a comment
                      wacky wabbit!

                    #13
                    So let me ask. If my ribs have that strip of meat across the back, then it's a safe assumption that the butcher hasn't removed the membrane, right? I really struggle with it and so I usually try for a couple of minutes and then give up and move on. I honestly don't know if it makes a difference or not, I've always been pretty happy with my ribs.

                    Comment


                      #14
                      The presence of the strip of diaphragm meat and membrane removal are in no way related. Membrane could easily be removed and not disturb that strip of meat at all.

                      Comment


                        #15
                        I have bought all my ribs from Costco for the last several years and they remove it so I have not had to deal with it. I don't remember ever having ribs with the membrane on so I can't say if there is any difference or not.

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