This past Christmas I purchased an Anova Precision Cooker for my son, Rob, who loves to cook.  He was very skeptical when he opened the box and asked “what is it”?  Well, just what exactly is a precision cooker you might ask…..it’s an immersion circulator that is used to cook sous vide….and what is sous vide cooking?

Sous vide” is French for “under vacuum” and refers to the process of vacuum-sealing food and cooking it in a temperature controlled water bath. However, that’s a bit of a misnomer. You don’t need to vacuum seal your food to cook sous vide. Instead, this technique is really about bringing food to a very precise temperature and holding it there for a period of time, which is why we refer to the technique as “precision cooking.”

Chefs around the world use sous vide cooking to prepare food to the perfect level of doneness while also retaining its nutrients, but the technique isn’t just limited to high end restaurants. In recent years, affordable countertop sous vide equipment like the Anova Precision Cooker have made sous vide cooking available for home use.

To cook sous vide, first prepare your food of choice — it can be anything from a steak or a chicken breast to corn on the cob — then place it in a plastic vacuum-sealed or zipper lock bag. Attach your immersion circulator to a pot of water and set the desired time and temperature. Clip your sealed bag of food to the pot and let it cook, the circulator moves water around the pot, ensuring a consistent temperature throughout. Once your food has finished cooking, you can sear it, serve it, or even save it for later. It’s simple, convenient, and produces professional quality results every time.” 

It didn’t take Rob very long to perfect the sous vide technique.  He would always call me or text me and tell me how fantastic all the food was that he made with the Anova.  I have to admit,  I was jealous!!!  Here are some pictures of just a few of his creations, burgers, steaks, rack of lamb…..Yum!

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This past Mother’s Day I posted a link to Anova on Facebook and made a subtle hint about it making a great gift for mom.  WOW…..did it work!  I was so excited when Rob & Cecile sent me the Anova….I couldn’t wait to try it out.  So far I have made burgers, steaks, and boneless beef tips.  All have been wonderful.  I have been itching at the bit to try baby back ribs.  Well, its the bit…..

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THE RUB

Then seal and add to pot:

Now the fun part, turn the Anova cooker on and set the temperature to 145F and the timer on for 20 (YES 20) hours and forget about it…..

20 Hours Later:

Remove the bags of ribs from the pan.  Ribs can be placed in the refrigerator if not ready to use them right away (but take them out and let them come to room temperature before finishing).

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Now comes the really fun part….light the grill (or you can use a grill pan or place the ribs on a sheet pan and place under the broiler).

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Once the charcoal is hot (around 350F) place the ribs on the grill, presentation side down,  for 2-3 minutes, turn the ribs over and baste with your favorite BBQ Sauce (we love Weber Spicy).  Close lid and cook an additional 3-5 minutes.  Remove ribs from grill, serve…

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Definitely the MOST tender, moist, flavorful ribs I have ever had.  The hint of smoke was perfect, the meat didn’t fall off the bones (that’s a Memphis no-no).  ” Properly cooked ribs will pull cleanly off the bone with your teeth, but they will still have some resilience and chew, like a properly cooked steak, but not be tough.”

Here’s the recipe….enjoy and Buon Appetito!

Sous Vide Baby Back Ribs

The Rub:

2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 tablespoon Weber Smokey Mesquite Seasoning
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin seed
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1 teaspoon salt
liquid smoke

Mix all dry ingredients together until combined. Sprinkle over both sides of ribs. Set ribs aside for 1 to 2 hours.

Divide ribs into 3 pieces. Place each piece in a zip lock or food saver bag and place a few drops of liquid smoke into each bag. Place sealed bags in preheated water bath for 20 hours, set at 145°F.

Remove ribs from bath. Place on a grill pan, under the broiler, or on a hot grill for 3-5 minutes per side. Baste with your favorite BBQ Sauce, if desired.

Sous Vide Baby Back Ribs


With Chinese New Year right around the corner (Monday, February 8th) what better way to celebrate this occasion,  then with some fall off the bone, flavorful, easy to make, Chinese Ribs.

I was in the mood for something different last night for dinner when I decided to make these ribs.  I hadn’t had them in a very long time.  What a great surprise to see my daughter Jenny go back 2 times for more ribs.  These really are “finger lickin’ good”!

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Cut one rack of ribs (I used baby back) into individual pieces.  Lightly salt and pepper ribs.

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Place 2 tablespoons of canola oil in a skillet or or dutch oven skillet with oil.  Add ribs and brown on all sides over medium high heat.  Deglaze  ribs with 1 ¼ cups of your favorite Sake….I used DSC_0003

Add ½ cup soy sauce, 1 tablespoon of minced garlic, 1 teaspoon of ginger, and ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes.

Cover pan and reduce heat to simmer for 2 hours or until the meat pulls away easily from the bones.

Remove ribs from skillet and place on a sheet pan that has been sprayed with cooking spray.

DSC_0009Add 1 tablespoon Karo® light syrup, 2 tablespoons of your favorite barbecue sauce, ¼ teaspoon of red pepper flakes, ¼ teaspoon of ground ginger and 1 tablespoon of sesame seeds to skillet.  Stir until heated throughly.DSC_0007

Using a silicone pastry brush, brush glaze over ribs and place under broiler for 2-4 minutes, or until slightly golden brown.

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Click below to download the recipe:

Chinese Braised Ribs

Hope you enjoy these “finger lickin'” ribs as much as we do!

Buon Appetito!

Chinese Braised Ribs


Happy 4th of July!  And what a great time of the year to share with friends and family over some yummy ribs, salads, watermelon, and whatever else you like on this wonderful holiday.  My son, Rob, is our families official rib cooker, but since his relocation to Colorado I’ve had to try and come up with my own recipe/style of cooking ribs.  I hope you enjoy them, remember, low and slow…..

The rub:

2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion The Rubpowder
2 teaspoons Weber® Smokey Mesquite Seasoning
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Smoked Paprika
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Cayenne Pepper
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Pasilla Chili Powder
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Chipotle Chili Powder
½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt

Rinse ribs and remove the membrane from the rack of ribs using a paper towel.

Remove the Membrane

 

Sprinkle ribs with rub.

Sprinkle ribs with rub

Wrap ribs in foil and place in refrigerator overnight, if possible, or at least for 60 minutes.

Prepare the grill:
Preheat your grill to 225°, try and maintain this heat throughout the entire cooking process. Place a smoke box (filled with soaked chips) directly over the coals.

Remove ribs from foil and place on grill, but not directly over the coals.* Smoke ribs for 2-3 hours for baby back ribs and 3-4 hours for Saint Louis style ribs. Remove ribs from grill and wrap in foil (this will prevent ribs from drying out). Continue smoking the ribs (adding additional wood chips as needed) until the ribs are done (check doneness by bending the ribs, if they bend easy, they are ready, if not, go grab a beer and come back later).

Memphis BBQ Ribs

Bon Appetito!

Memphis Style BBQ Ribs

1 Rack Ribs, Baby Back

Rub:
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
2 teaspoons Weber® Smokey Mesquite Seasoning
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Smoked Paprika
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Cayenne Pepper
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Pasilla Chili Powder
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Chipotle Chili Powder
½ teaspoon kosher or sea salt

Ribs:
Rinse ribs and remove the membrane from the rack of ribs using a paper towel.
Combine rub and sprinkle on both sides of ribs.
Wrap ribs in foil and place in refrigerator overnight, if possible, or at least for 60 minutes.

Prepare the grill:
Preheat your grill to 225°, try and maintain this heat throughout the entire cooking process. Place a smoke box (filled with soaked chips) directly over the coals.

Remove ribs from foil and place on grill, but not directly over the coals.* Smoke ribs for 2-3 hours for baby back ribs and 3-4 hours for Saint Louis style ribs. Remove ribs from grill and wrap in foil (this will prevent ribs from drying out). Continue smoking the ribs (adding additional wood chips as needed) until the ribs are done (check doneness by bending the ribs, if they bend easy, they are ready, if not, go grab a beer and come back later).

Brush your favorite sauce on top of ribs, cook an additional 2-3 minutes and remove ribs from grill.

*Great website with lots of information regarding ribs…
http://amazingribs.com/recipes/porknography/best_BBQ_ribs_ever.html

Memphis Style BBQ Ribs


Turn Your Grill into a Smoker and ROCK these Ribs!!!

Happy Father’s Day! Today is the perfect day to do some outdoor “smoking”.  I have owned a propane grill for years, just love it.  But I have always wanted a charcoal grill to get the real charcoal flavor for some types of food. A few weeks ago, I finally made that leap to a charcoal grill!  Last night I attempted my first ever (yes its true) smoked ribs.

Weber Grill

Weber Grill

This has always been my son’s tradition (I think because it gives him an excuse to drink beer….hehehe)

Rob & Cecile smoking ribs

Rob & Cecile smoking ribs

I found this great blog about smoking ribs without a traditional smoker.  See below.  I prefer to use “baby back ribs” instead of “St. Louis” style, also I love Wickers instead of apple juice, has a LOT more flavor.  And here is my recipe for the “rub”:

2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Garlic Powder
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Onion Powder
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Smoked Paprika
1 teaspoon Spice Islands® Pasilla Chile Powder
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Cayenne Powder
1 tablespoon Webers® Smokey Mesquite Seasoning
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Black Pepper
½ teaspoon Spice Islands® Salt

I also prefer to leave the rub on as long as possible, preferably overnight.  One more thing, I wrap my ribs in foil or the first couple of hours of cooking, this is known as Crunching”.

The Texas Crunch

The Texas Crunch

Memphis Style Smoked Ribs

Memphis Style Smoked Ribs

Buon Appetito!

Eatocracy

America’s Test Kitchen  is a real 2,500 square foot test kitchen located just outside of Boston that is home to more than three dozen full¬time cooks and product testers. Our mission is simple: to develop the absolute best recipes for all of your favorite foods. To do this, we test each recipe 30, 40, sometimes as many as 70 times, until we arrive at the combination of ingredients, technique, temperature, cooking time, and equipment that yields the best, most foolproof recipe. America’s Test Kitchen’s online cooking school is based on nearly 20 years of test kitchen work in our own facility, on the recipes created for Cook’s Illustrated magazine, and on our two public television cooking shows.

The secret to great barbecue in your own backyard isn’t necessarily going out and buying all sorts of special equipment. You don’t require a smoker, and you don’t need the huge barbecue…

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