Lea’s recipe, based on smoked ribs at Lambert’s Downtown Barbecue, Austin, TX


2 or 3 St. Louis cut rack of ribs (3 pounds each)

For the brine:
8 cups heated water (not boiling)
1 orange, 1 lemon, 1 lime, cut in half and then quarters, juice squeezed into hot water, followed by the rind remains.
1/2 cup sugar
1/3 cup salt
2 tsp thyme
1 Tbsp fennel seed, roasted
2 tsp coriander

For the dry rub:

Barbecue Sauce Like Lamberts

Barbecue Sauce Like Lamberts (link to the recipe below)

1 Tbsp white sugar, per rack

Mixed together, and ground if necessary:
1 Tbsp fennel, roasted
1 tsp coriander
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp white pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon

For the smoke:
Large lump oak charcoal

1. Rinse the ribs with cold water. Pat dry. Remove the silver skin from the concave underside.
2. Place the ribs into a container with lid. Do not allow to reach room temperature.
2. Mix the brine well, and pour over the ribs to cover. Marinate 12-14 hours in refrigerator.
3. Remove ribs from marinade, which can be discarded. Rinse the ribs in cold water, and pat dry.
4. Sprinkle the top of each rack lightly with 1 Tbsp white sugar
5. Sprinkle evenly with dry rub (no patting or rubbing in is needed)
6. Place on smoker, seasoned side up. Smoke for 3-4 hours at 250F.
7. Mop with BBQ sauce for the last 30 minutes of smoking.

Lea in Red ApronThis is my take on Lambert’s Downtown BBQ recipe for smoked St. Louis cut ribs. The marinade gives the ribs a wonderful fruity undertone, while the Barbecue Sauce Like Lambert’s recipe that Larry developed gives them a flavor that just knocks it out of the park! One of the key ingredients in this recipe is smoking with the oak, which burns hot, but doesn’t impart the subtle-to-mild bitterness you can get with some other woods. These are so good you’ll want “just one more,” so there’s no need for many side dishes.