Slow Smoked Pork Ribs with Louisiana Hot Sauce

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Chef Brad Forshner, Saltscapes


2 racks of pork back ribs
9 cups (2 L + 250 mL) sugar maple wood smoking chips

2 tablespoons (30 mL) paprika
3 tablespoons (45 mL) brown sugar
1 tablespoon (15 mL) ground ginger
1 tablespoon (15 mL) dry mustard
2 tablespoons (30 mL) ground black pepper
1 tablespoon (15 mL) sea salt

Louisiana Hot Barbecue Sauce

1 cup (250 mL) olive or canola oil
2 cups (500 mL) finely chopped onion
1 large green bell pepper, finely chopped
1 cup (250 mL) finely chopped celery
3 tablespoons (45 mL) minced garlic
1 (28-ounce/796 mL) can stewed tomatoes, puréed in blender
1 tablespoon (15 mL) Dijon or Creole mustard
1/4 cup (50 mL) white vinegar
1 tablespoon (15 mL) cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon (5 mL) hot pepper sauce
1 bay leaf
2 teaspoons (10 mL) freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup (125 mL) firmly packed brown sugar
1/2 cup (125 mL) dark molasses


Combine all rub ingredients in a bowl. Rub the mixture vigorously and evenly over ribs. Put the ribs in a sealed container or bag in the refrigerator for about 5 hours, or overnight.

To smoke ribs: Soak 6 cups (1.5 L) of the wood chips in enough water to cover, for one hour. Squeeze excess water from 2 cups (500 mL) of the wet chips and place on a large piece of aluminum foil. Add 1 cup (250 mL) of dry chips to the wet chips and mix together. Close the foil around the chips to make a sealed foil pouch. Puncture holes in both sides with a fork to allow the smoke to escape and infuse the meat. Make 2 more pouches the same way as the first one. (You should have a total of 3 pouches.)

Remove one side of the grill grate and insert a smoke pouch. Preheat that side of the grill to 400°F (200°C) or high, leaving the other side of grill off. Close lid and wait for grill to smoke. When it starts smoking, lower the heat under the pouch to 250°F (120°C), or medium-low heat.

Place the ribs on the opposite side of the grill from the smoke pouch. Close the lid and leave ribs to smoke for 2 1/2 hours, until meat is tender, replacing the pouch every 45 minutes.

Baste the ribs during the last 20 minutes of cooking with Louisiana Hot Barbecue Sauce (see recipe below). Makes 2 to 4 servings

Louisiana Hot Barbecue Sauce

Sauté onion, pepper, celery and garlic in oil until soft, about 10 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and simmer slowly for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often; season to taste by changing amounts of sugar, spices and vinegar. Cook another 5 to 10 minutes. Let sit for an hour minimum after cooking, to allow flavours to blend. Store covered in refrigerator. Sauce will have more flavour the next day, and will store in the fridge for a couple of weeks. Makes about 6 cups (1.5 L).
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