Yes, it’s an AB sort of weekend. I wanted to make these country pork ribs on the grill. Typically I do ribs one of several ways. I either par-boil them and then baste with sauce on the grill (like my daddy showed me) or else I’ll brine them. Today was a brine day. Why brine? Visit here for a complete scientific explanation. Alton Brown, King of the Briners had a great visual example of the brining process using Barbie dolls, but I can’t find it online. Anyway, he has an interesting brine for pork in his James Beard award-winning cookbook “I’m Just Here for the Food”. This is a great cookbook that is also a “how-to” and “why-to” of cooking. Can you say SCIENCE?! Along with the recipe, he shares that “Mr. Dennis” is a euphemism for the family pig.
A Dip for Mr. Dennis
Adapted from Alton Brown’s “I’m Just Here for the Food”
Target cut of pork
1 tablespoon juniper berries
1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
10 whole cloves
1 ½ cups kosher salt (I cut it by half to ¾)
½ cup molasses
Tea ball or paper coffee filter and string
2-gallon plastic bucket
Combine spices in tea ball or tie them securely into a paper coffee filter and place in pot with salt and molasses. Add water and bring to a boil. Remove from heat and cool to room temperature. Remove tea ball and discard the spices; pour the liquid into the bucket and add the meat. Allow the meat to brine for at least 6 hours or as long as 12 hours. Remove the meat from the pan, pat dry and immediately cook as desired.
Since I was only using about 5 large “ribs” I cut the amount of salt way back and marinated for about 2 hours. I rinsed the meat off before cooking as well. Grill over med-high heat until juices run clear. Lip-smackin’ pork goodness.