I apologize to some of you in advance. I know a small percentage of you have grown a bit tired of hearing about my pizza exploits. But I also know some of you really enjoy hearing about them, so in an effort to compromise, I’ll write a bit this week about pizza and ribs. The reason this works is that one of the pizzas used smoked meat from the pork ribs as the main ingredient. Let’s start specifically with the ribs.
We had a family gathering and I was given the task of smoking ribs. I decided to go with the larger spare ribs, which can be a bit less expensive than baby back ribs, but also require a little prep work prior to putting them on the smoker. Typically, there is a flap of meat which needs to be removed, as well as the large piece of boneless meat at the top of the ribs. The end product, if done correctly will be St. Louis style spare ribs. What I find interesting is that I never hear of anyone talking about using these “scraps,” especially the large boneless piece on the top of the ribs, so consider this a culinary first. I rub the ribs with table mustard and then liberally apply my favorite pork rub. The ribs get placed vertically in my rib rack. The remaining pieces of meat receive the same treatment. I then lay them on the grates of the grill in spare spaces around the rib rack. Since these pieces do not have the bones, they can dry out quicker. I smoked these pieces of meat for 2 ½ hours at 240 degrees and then wrapped in foil and put them back on the smoker. After another couple hours I removed the foil packets and allowed them to come to room temperature before putting it in the fridge. When it was pizza time I removed a large piece of pork from the foil package earlier in the day, cut it into bite sized pieces and placed the pieces back in a foil pack with some BBQ sauce. I placed it in the oven at 200 degrees and allowed it to tenderize for a few hours. For the pizza it was really simple. BBQ sauce was the base, pork was the main ingredient and we used shredded mozzarella cheese to finish it off. Simple but delicious.
Now onto the pickle pizza. I know, weird! Why would I make such a strange pizza? We have a family member “expecting,” so she was really wanting me to try making this pizza since there is a restaurant in Louisville which serves it. As a spoiler alert, the pickle pizza was delicious. We used ranch dressing as the sauce (Liz made her own but a high quality store-bought would work) and dill pickles. We bought whole pickles and sliced them lengthwise on a mandoline slicer, resulting in paper-thin slices. Shredded mozzarella was the cheese of choice followed by a sprinkling of dried dill weed. Once the pizza was cut a few dashes of Franks Hot Sauce was applied, the hot sauce being optional of course. Enjoy!
Dave Lobeck is an Edward Jones Financial Advisor in Jeffersonville Indiana by day and a BBQ and food enthusiast on nights and weekends. Liz is his wife. You can visit their YouTube channel at www.YouTube.com/BBQMyWay!