Saturday, July 7, 2012

Fork and Knife BBQ Baby Back Ribs So Easy You Won't Believe It!

Ok it's summer and everyone wants to grill grill grill! Well that's what the food industrial complex would have you believe. But sometimes we don't have time to grill or space or even ...a grill. So how can I provide really great bbq to myself and my friends without a grill, well follow this and here we go!

So folks I live in New York City and I live in a nice building. We even had a bbq grill built in on our roof, But there are 420 apartments in my building. So you can imagine that finding time to make food in that space is a little tough and gaining access to the rooftop is not always a sure thing. I mean I don't mind sharing (after all I am from the Sesame Street generation) but sometimes you just want to do it when you want to do it and not wait to share the grill. So this summer I decided that making the most amazing Ribs is the goal I would have, and making them in my apartment was the caveat to that statement.

Now as many of you know I love the food at the Hillstone restaurants, some called Houston's Restaurant in some cities. Houston's BBQ "fork and knife" ribs are probably the best ribs I have ever eaten in a restaurant that does not specialize in BBQ. But I happen to know they cook their ribs via a process using a alto-shaam oven so that would not work for me. Cause I don't own one! What that process does however is cook the meat at 225 degrees for 4 to 6 hours and then at 150 degrees holding for about 8 hours total cooking time. The process is such that it breaks down the collagen in the meat to the point where they are "fork and Knife" tender. Well if you have been reading the blog you will have known that I discovered a shortcut for breaking down the collagen in meat when I made the Short Ribs Recipe earlier in the blog ( See the post ).

So what to do, well lets just use that process which will accomplish the same thing as the alto-shaam and is super easy and clean up is a breeze! HERE'S HOW!

                                  Hillstone's Fork and Knife Ribs

Forrest's Super Easy Best Ever Baby Back BBQ Ribs! ( In three easy steps)

Step one: Take 2 racks of baby back ribs for 3 to 4 people or more (depending on how much they eat). Carefully with a small knife remove the membrane on the back of the ribs or get your butcher to do this.  On wax paper season with garlic powder and black pepper, let sit at room temp for 30 mins. Then place ribs in a deep pan or large tupperware mix the following ingredients for a brine and pour over the ribs till they are covered)

2 cups prune juice
1 cup Hickory ( must be hickory ) BBQ sauce (Kraft makes a good one or if you can get Cattleman's Kansas City brand use it!!!)
1 cup water or more to make sure they are covered by the brine.

Cover and place in the fridge for 8 hours or better yet over night

Step Two: Carefully remove ribs from the brine and place each rack on a large piece of aluminum foil that has been sprayed with cooking spray. Brush generously with additional hickory flavored BBQ sauce until nicely coated. Seal ribs in the foil and place on a baking sheet.

Step Three: Place in a 300 degree oven for 2 hours. Remove from the foil carefully as ribs will be fall apart tender. Then slather with more sauce. Serve immediately!

Or to make ahead just cool the ribs down completely after baking don't unwrap them, and hold in the fridge. When ready, slather them with sauce and re-warm them uncovered in a 250 degree oven until heated through about 45 mins. to one hour. This will also make the sauce that much more thick and sticky ( This is what I like to do when i have time to prepare ahead!) The ribs can be made up to 3 days before and held in the fridge and just reheated when you want to serve them. Slather with extra sauce and serve.


  1. Yum and I'm inspired to do ribs which I don't think I've ever tried to make myself.

  2. This is the only recipe I use when we want baby back ribs, it's so easy and yummy.
    Thanks for posting it!

    1. Thanks for your feedback always nice to hear that folks are reading.

  3. You are missing are missing 5 ingredients in the rub. There is not a brine solution and there is no prune juice used.

    You put them in the oven and then there is another step you are missing and they sit overnight in a fridge.

    Then the sauce goes on then they hit the grill.

    This recipe is so far off the mark the Houston's name should be removed entirely. Even if they taste good they will not be even remotely close

    1. Thanks for stopping by. These are not Houston's Ribs and don't pretend to be. I happen to like Hillstone's ribs and mentioned them. Nor is the recipe theirs as you point out. But they are quite good. Thanks for your feedback.