Alabama is famous for having some of the best 'cue in the barbecue belt. In addition to the state's creamy white sauce for barbecue chicken, Greek immigrants to Alabama are credited with cooking up some of the best ribs around. You can actually trace Greek influence throughout the barbecue belt, from the Carolina's to Kansas City. Cooked over hardwood charcoal or wood fires, the heavily dry-rubbed ribs are fall-off-the-bone tender, tangy and divine. The rules for basting the ribs with the vinegar and honey mixture are loose, but if you want my rule, I say to baste when you pop off the top of each fresh cold beer.
Technique tip: This is a bit faster of a method to turn out ribs, which involves grilling over direct heat, followed by indirect heat until cooked tender.
Swap option: You can use spareribs, baby backs or country-style ribs for alternative variety.
- 5 teaspoons kosher salt
- 4 teaspoons grated lemon zest (from 2 lemons)
- 4 teaspoons dried oregano
- 4 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
- 2 (3-pound) slabs St. Louis-style pork spareribs
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tablespoons honey
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Stir together the salt, zest, oregano, garlic powder and crushed red pepper in a bowl. Rub the mixture evenly over the ribs. Whisk together the vinegar, honey and black pepper in a separate bowl.2.
Open the bottom vent of a charcoal grill completely. Light a charcoal chimney starter filled halfway with charcoal. When the coals are covered with gray ash, pour them onto the bottom grate of the grill and then push to one side of the grill. Adjust the vents as needed to maintain an internal temperature of 350 F to 400 F. Coat the top grate with oil; place on the grill.3.
Place the ribs, meaty-side down, on the oiled grates directly over the side with the coals (or the lit side of a gas grill). Grill, covered, until lightly browned and charred, about 15 minutes, turning once halfway through cook time. Move the ribs to grates over the side without the coals (or the unlit side of a gas grill). Grill, covered and brushing occasionally with the vinegar mixture, until a thermometer inserted in thickest portion of the ribs registers 195 F, 1 hour and 30 minutes to 1 hour and 45 minutes. Transfer the ribs to a cutting board and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes. Cut into individual ribs and serve.