Today, we’re taking a bold step: we’re grillin’ us some ribs.

I’ve tried ribs before, and they don’t come out right. They’re either underdone, or burnt, or bland, or just missing something. I’ve tried pre-boiling, which just turns the meat a nasty gray, and steam broiling, which got the moisture right but missed the good smoky flavor of the grill. I’ve plain ol’ grilling with sauce, and that just gave me a rack of burnt, sugary meat. Not good.

But today, we’re gonna try something new. After watching Alton Brown talk about ribs, and after consulting the righteous Cook’s Illustrated The Best Recipe, I think we’re ready.

First, I put a dry rub on the ribs based on Alton’s recipe above with a few changes: I dumped the Old Bay, jalapeno powder and onion powder in exchange for fennel, cumin, and this nipple-hardeningly good sweet paprika that Mom and Dad brought back from Spain. The ribs have been sitting in the fridge overnight, smothered in the stuff. It smells awesome.

The rest of the method will be from Best Recipe: using smoking chips, cooking over indirect heat, resting the meat. Sam and Danielle are coming over early to start the cooking while Anne and I are at work, so there won’t be any photos of the initial grilling.

I’m going to borrow a bit from Alton by taking any fluid left over from the resting to make a sauce, then glaze the ribs and put ’em back on the grill for a little crispiness. The last step might not be necessary, as Best Recipe swears the meat will be just fine on its own. Maybe I’ll just try it with half a rack for comparison. Stay tuned!