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Old 04-09-2010, 03:17 PM   #1
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Spare Ribs vs. Country Ribs...

what exactly is the difference here? The guy at the butcher shop said that you can do spare ribs via par boiling and then grill or broiled but not the country ribs.

This seems to be true as my father would always do his spare ribs with sauer kraut, potatoes etc in a simmering pot. I tried this process (par boil + grilling) once with country ribs and the result was awful.

What confuses me is that both of these pork cuts seem to work well on a Low/Slow cooking, covered with foil at about 275 for 6-8 hours. I didnt notice a difference. It seems to me that rougher cuts of meats do better this way so why dont country ribs work as par boil + grill?

I realize not every is in favor of the par boiling method but I did it because time as short. what Id like to know is how exactly are these types of meat different.

Thanks.

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Old 04-09-2010, 03:51 PM   #2
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I'm as interested in the answer to your question as you are. All I can contribute is that the country ribs make a great ingredient when cooking spaghetti sauce.
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Old 04-09-2010, 04:11 PM   #3
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First of all, I don't believe in any kind of boiling for ribs. You just leave pork flavor behind in the water.

Spare ribs are mostly bone with meat between the ribs. Country style ribs are a lot meatier.

I use a dry rub the day before then wrap them in foil with some seasonings and cook them low and slow in the oven for 2-3 hours. Then onto the grill to finish them. If I had a smoker, I'd use that and skip the oven and grill all together.

Some pork bones with meat on them are a very good flavor addition for a tomato sauce. You could use spare or country-style ribs, pork neck bones, or others.
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Old 04-09-2010, 05:24 PM   #4
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For the record, country ribs aren't ribs at all. They are cut from the blade end of the loin.

Personally, I agree with Andy M. I can't see boiling any kind of "rib". In fact, I don't really get boiling any kind of meat unless it is a braise (which I love).

As an aside, country ribs make the best carnitas.
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:26 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Andy M. View Post
First of all, I don't believe in any kind of boiling for ribs. You just leave pork flavor behind in the water.

Spare ribs are mostly bone with meat between the ribs. Country style ribs are a lot meatier.

I use a dry rub the day before then wrap them in foil with some seasonings and cook them low and slow in the oven for 2-3 hours. Then onto the grill to finish them. If I had a smoker, I'd use that and skip the oven and grill all together.

Some pork bones with meat on them are a very good flavor addition for a tomato sauce. You could use spare or country-style ribs, pork neck bones, or others.

this is the method I havemoved to and it is great. If you boil ribs are you not making soup? ever eaten boilded chicken? the flavour is drawn out.
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Old 04-09-2010, 06:38 PM   #6
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Spare ribs are primarily most of the rib cage of a hog including the breast bone..With the breast bone (brisket) removed they become St Louis Cut Spare Ribs...Sometimes you will see (or mostly hear) of Kansas City Cut Spare Ribs... Where in addition to the removal of the breast bone the inside flap of meat ( remainder of the diaphragm ) is removed/trimmed off.. Both the St Louis, and the KC cuts have the small end trimmed off to "square up" the slab.~~ At the end of the day the difference is mostly about intrastate rivalry baloney!.

Country Style Ribs ~~ The North American Meat Processors Association says that country style ribs "shall be prepared from the blade end of a bone-in pork loin, and shall include not less the three ribs, and no more than six...plus some additional technical cutting.... They don't seem to be as fashionable as they once were...The "trendy" loin back ribs have the public's favor right now...and loin backs are just country style with loin meat removed...Wonder why anyone would choose loin back over country style?? I suppose they would rather have the trendy Hoity Toity, Artsy Fartsy "baby back" ribs... Even when 99% if them are not true 'baby backs" anyway.

Also, you will see another "Country Style Rib" in your grocers meat case. These are cut from the shoulder...specifically the butt portion....Obviously they are not "ribs" at all...they are just pork butt sliced/cut into strips...Once long ago in my area these "ribs" were labeled as "Western Style Ribs" to differentiate from true "Country Style"....I've not seen them labeled that way in years...So when your retailer advertises "Country Style Ribs...Are they true Country Style (from the blade end of the loin...or are they cut from the shoulder/butt?? Truth in labeling law says that somewhere on the package it must say what part of the hog the meat came from...I often see in bold print.. Country Style Ribs...in small print over in a corner...Pork shoulder..... .In my area those cut from the shoulder dominate the store's displays and advertising....True Country Style are few and far between, but I do find them occasionally in Kroger stores...Most of the time I buy them from a small local processor. HTH

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Old 04-09-2010, 07:59 PM   #7
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I do country style the sam as I do beef ribs, In a pan, covered with foil and low heat for several hours. Then I rmove any pn juice and we grill the ribs. This gives me what I'm looking for meat that falls off the bone is tender and juicy...
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:07 PM   #8
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Uncle Bob, thanks for that great info on ribs.
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Old 04-09-2010, 08:30 PM   #9
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Thanks Andy! I hope it answers the OP's questions.....
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Old 04-10-2010, 08:50 AM   #10
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yeah but my question is "Is this type of meat in country style really different enough from spare ribs to warrant a different cooking? I.e. why are country style able to be par boiled and the spare ribs are?"

At least it seems that way. And again I dont want to endorse the boiling method but it can be done and it comes out allright for spare ribs.

Also the store I was in (Shoppers Food Wharehouse) the country ribs really are cuts of Boston Butt.
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