› ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Exotic ribs or shoulder
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Exotic ribs or shoulder

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

    Hi all,



    There are few things better than some nice bbq.  With help from a lot of members here I've gotten to the point where I'm quite comfortable with my ribs and shoulders.  One could always improve and get more consistent, but I'm happy with the results I'm currently getting.  


   Lately I've been trying to expand into some more exotic flavors of bbq, ribs and shoulders.  Have you got any favorites or suggestions?  


   Thanks a bunch!


post #2 of 6
Thread Starter 

     I'm thinking I'll toy around with these flavors...



  • Chinese: garlic, ginger, Szechuan peppercorns, soy sauce, sesame oil, bean paste, hoisin sauce.
  • Southeast Asian: lime juice, tamarind, coconut milk, green chiles, fish sauce.
  • Jamaican: allspice, mango, Scotch Bonnet or habanero chiles.
  • Middle Eastern/North African: lemon juice, cinnamon, cumin, dried fruit.
  • Mexican: garlic, dried or fresh red or green chiles, lime juice


  I'm just using the above flavors as a guideline.  I'm not quite sure where the rub and sauces will end up...but I'll give some of these a try.






post #3 of 6

I'm not sure where you're going with "exotic" Dan.  You just want to fool around with different flavor profile marinades, wet and dry rubs?


Try this:  Get some fennel and coriander seeds, and toast them.  Grind them in a coffee grinder and combine the spices, 50/50 by volume.  Then mix the resulting combined spice powder with my basic "swine rub" or any other pig rub you particularly like. If you want, you can add some orange or orange/lemon zest as well.


The character is Italian, but not many of your guests will be able to identify it as such.  Michael Chiarello does a fennel/coriander rub which is not quite as complex nor quite as good with smoke -- but he definitely deserves a tip o'the hat.   


I don't use a mustard slather for this rub -- EVOO is good, but mayo is better.


Like many rubs, it's also very good on popcorn.


Tip:  If you don't grind the seeds all the way down to powder, you'll get a very interesting bark on your shoulders.  It might be a little too interesting for ribs that way -- so try it on a butt or picnic first.


Injecting is the best way to get a flavor profile which goes beyond purely "pork" into a shoulder.  A dry Madeira or Marsala  would work well with the fennel/coriander rub.  With other rubs, you might want to try a sweet/spicy white wine like a Traminer or Riesling is also nice, or even Calvados.  You want to watch out for anything that will leave too much color in the meat.



post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by boar_d_laze View Post

I'm not sure where you're going with "exotic" Dan.  You just want to fool around with different flavor profile marinades, wet and dry rubs?






  Hi BDL...thanks for the suggestions.


    When I titled the thread and used the word "exotic," I was actually thinking of a recent thread of your regarding ribs.




  In addition to everything we've talked about already there are plenty of "exotic" ethnic ribs -- Mexican, Chinese, Cambodian, Armenian, and on and on.  I love 'em all.



   I would like to start experimenting with ethnic type ribs (or shoulder) from different parts of the world.  I'd just like to explore "other" ribs and "other" shoulders.


   how do you say it???





post #5 of 6



I don't know how I'd say it, but it doesn't matter since we're on the same page now.


Ribs are one thing shoulder is another.


Try thinking of ribs as kababs on bone skewers.  All the kabab things like wet rubs or glazes with pomegranite molasses; yogurt / tandoori paste; the standard Med olive oil / wine / lemon / garlic / onion / herbs and so on.  You can take the garlic to the max, use a spedies recipe and marinate the living heck out of them.


You can do these open pit or kettle too, just go with a slow fire.


Chinese barbecue -- marinate your ribs in chinese cooking wine or inexpensive sherry;  rub lightly with salt, white pepper, granulated onion, and five space.  Glaze lightly with a good brand of char-siu (red sauce) or hoisin which has been sufficiently thinned once about an hour before cooking is finished, than again about 20 minutes before you're done. 


Use the ribs as seasoning to compliment the main attraction.  Smoke your ribs for about an hour, and add them to braises, soups, lentils, beans, greens, etc., as you'd use a ham hock or a turkey wing to get some smoke, richness and umami.  The best and most economical way is to use a turkey wing to put a lot of cheap flavor into your dish, then add a few ribs and cook them long enough to get them tender. 


Shoulder's somewhat different.  It's hard to get enough flavor into the meat using a rub, marinade, or even an injection to make it anything other than smoked pork shoulder.  It is what it is. 


I like to use smoked pork meat in ways you'd use any cooked pork shoulder.  Curries, tamales, flautas (aka taquitos), taco meat, in a pita with tzatziki, etc.  You get the drift.  You want to watch the internal temp when you cook the shoulder.  The 185-190F is better for chunk, while the 195-200F works better for shredding.


Try making Salvadorean style tamales with chunk. 


Bone your shoulder (okay, the pig's shoulder; don't be so difficult), cut it into semi-manageable portions and wrap them in banana leaves before smoking.  Kalua pork without all the liquid smoke is beyond addictive.


With the Mexican stuff you can do an al pastor marinade and inject it, but you're still going to get smoked pork with a subtle twist.  I know you're going to try it.  Don't forget the beer in that one.


I particularly like a peach / ginger / gewurz traminer injection -- and usually make sort of German-ish style sides to serve with the pork.  I ran it by some "certified KCBS judges," but you can't budge them from apple or apple / white-grape juices.  Then I brought it up in a BBQ chatroom and the southern boys exploded.  Wine, it appears, is anathema.  


You are injecting your butts and briskets, right?


We sure don't want to forget about ABTs either.  You could make them "exotic" by using good cheese and starting with pickled jalapenos.



post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Food & Cooking › ChefTalk Cooking Forums › Cooking Discussions › Food & Cooking › Exotic ribs or shoulder