When it comes to smoked ribs, pork tends to reign supreme, though today we are mixing up the game with a new player -- alligator!
When cooking alligator, it is worth noting that the meat tends to be somewhat tough. To offset this, we use a buttermilk bath to help tenderize the meat overnight.
SMOKED ALLIGATOR RIBS
2 cups buttermilk
½ tbsp. Frank’s hot sauce
1 tbsp. smoked paprika
2 tsp. garlic powder
2 tsp. onion powder
2 tsp. Kosher salt
5 lbs. alligator ribs (approximately 10-12 small racks)
¼ cup yellow mustard
½ cup of your favorite barbecue dry rub seasoning
½ cup apple juice
2 cups of your favorite barbecue sauce
Combine buttermilk, hot sauce, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt in a large bowl and whisk to combine all of the ingredients. Divide the alligator ribs between two large zip top bags and cover with the buttermilk mixture. Seal the bags and refrigerate overnight.
Prepare smoker or grill for indirect cooking, adding 3-5 chunks of your favorite smoking wood to the charcoal. Adjust smoker or grill vents to bring the temperature to 250 degrees. Remove ribs from the buttermilk, rinse and pat dry. Coat ribs with yellow mustard and cover the mustard with an even layer of dry rub seasoning.
Place ribs on the smoker, cover, and allow them to smoke for 1.5 hours. Remove the ribs and place 3-4 racks on to a double layer of aluminum foil. Fold the foil up on the sides and add 2 tbsp. of apple juice. Wrap the foil around the ribs to seal completely and return to the smoker. Cover the smoker and allow the wrapped ribs to cook for another 1.5-2 hours until they bend easily. Remove the ribs from the smoker and slowly open the foil packets to allow the steam to escape. Brush both sides of the ribs with barbecue sauce and place the ribs back on to the smoker for 10 minutes until the sauce is fully set and is tacky.
Remove from the smoker and allow them to rest for 5 minutes before slicing.
* Recipe created by Clint Cantwell on behalf of Kingsford.com