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Cheaters’ Wild Pork Ribs

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There are days when just getting out of bed seems like a major achievement.  As I stagger to the kitchen whimpering for a cup of coffee,  a pile of bills waits for me on the table.  I wade through waist-deep laundry to get to the the freezer room (yes, we have a freezer room! My husband is the Deerslayer, remember.) to decide what to fix for dinner.  I stare, bleary-eyed, at the contents,  waiting for something to jump out at me, something so easy to prepare that I can whip it up in no time and still come out looking like a Homemaker Extraordinaire.   Do you have days like that, too?

Quite by accident, I stumbled upon something that fills the bill, if you will.  A couple of years ago, Deerslayer had a great year hunting wild pigs.  There was plenty of very welcome wild pork to fill our freezers.  We ground a whole bunch of it, and had several roasts and tenderloins.  I was a happy camper.  Deerslayer asked if he should keep the ribs.  Keep in mind that wild pork ribs aren’t the same size as the ones you get at the market, much smaller.  But, what the hell, said I!  So we packaged up quite a mess of ribs, as well.

I’d been wondering for a while if I could cook the ribs in the oven like I did in my post from March 22, 2013, freeze them, label them, and toss them on the pit just long enough to impart the smoky goodness at the last minute. I decided to give it a shot.

I seasoned the pork ribs very liberally with Tommy’s Salt & Pepper mix, tossed them in my covered roasting pan with a can of Dr. Pepper poured over, and braised them for approximately a couple of hours at 350 degrees, turning occasionally, until the meat just about fell off the bone.

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I was able to pull the bones right out of the ribs.  The slabs stayed intact, however. Sorry for the bad lighting.  The meat wasn’t quite that grey.

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Then I packaged up the fully-cooked meat, labeled it, and tossed it in the freezer.

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When I was ready for a speedy, great dinner, I thawed out the meat, started some charcoal in the BBQ pit and worked on my side dishes (red bell peppers to grill, some garlic to roast, and some cole slaw).

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I put the ribs on the grill just long enough to heat them through, and slathered them with my favorite BBQ sauce.  I tossed some red bell peppers on as well after I removed the seeds, opened up the peppers to lie flat, rubbed them with olive oil, and added some Salt & Pepper mix .

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Meanwhile, back in the kitchen,  I took a slew of garlic cloves (pre-peeled from Sam’s Club), tossed ’em in a cast iron skillet with a little olive oil, and allowed them to roast until lightly browned and soft. Pretty damned tasty!  Most of them were eaten right out of the skillet before I could even get a picture!

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Wild Pork Done Right/ Wild Pork Done Easy

A couple of weeks ago, my deerslayer was called upon to put together a birthday extravaganza for the patriarch of the Deerslayer clan.  The venue was a given; the family beach house near South Padre Island; rustic, grungy and the site of many, many great times had by all.  The food?  How about the whole wild pig we had in the freezer?  Perfect!  The method?  Smoked on the grill, of course!  My deerslayer worked with mesquite wood and a pit the way Picasso worked with oils.  It was pure artistry. However, it required four men and a flatbed trailer to get the pit to its destination.

The day of the party arrived.  Guests were greeted by “the traditional welcome of the deerslayer”.

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There’s nothing like a couple slabs of wild pig to welcome guests!  They (the slabs of pork, not the guests) went onto the pit and smoked all day.

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After 8 hours of snacking, storytelling, joking, beer drinking, and birthday festivities the main course was ready!

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It was outstanding.  I have to admit that I thought of my fellow bloggers at www.patronsofthepit.wordpress.com. I think that even they would be proud since they are experts of all things bar-b-qued and smoked.

An evening with family and friends, wild pork (and beer and wine), and beautiful views. It doesn’t get any better than this!

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As wonderful a time as this was, it required a lot of preparation and planning and man-hours.  There are times, however, when we just don’t feel like firing up the grill but still want the flavor of great pork.  My deerslayer processed our pigs this year so that we kept some racks of ribs.  Lots of racks of ribs to be exact because we got several wild pigs.

I decided to try something other than the traditional method.  At this point, if “The Patrons of the Pit” are reading this, or any other BBQ purists, walk away!  Just stop reading because you will shake your heads in despair.

Wild Pork Ribs (Done Easy)

I seasoned some pork ribs very liberally with Salt & Pepper mix, tossed them in my covered roasting pan with a can of Dr. Pepper, and braised them for a couple of hours at 350 degrees, turning occasionally.

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 Then I removed the lid, slathered them with my favorite new BBQ sauce, Skipkenny’s Whiskey BBQ Sauce, from New Braunfels. (It’s now available on Amazon!  I bought a case!)  I stuck them back in the oven for another hour until they began to fall off the bone.

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The ribs were ready for dinner with beans and potato salad.  They didn’t have the characteristic smoky flavor and smell of pit BBQ, but neither did I.  While I love BBQ as much as the next person, I have to admit (as do my deerslayers) that this is a pretty decent alternative to no ribs at all!  I’d be willing to prepare them this way again and my deerslayers said that they’d be willing to eat them!

 
 

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