A few weeks ago, I had the pleasure of attending my first official homegating event. With the weather getting colder, the appeal of tailgating is at an all-time low, I would much prefer to watch football from the comfort of a cozy couch. Sponsored by Prilosec OTC, in partnership with the Taste of the NFL, this homegate allowed me to stock in up on Prilosec OTC, eat delicious food from TAG and shamelessly ogling Demarcus Ware from across the room. And to watch football, of course.
Prilosec OTC isn’t just your go-to for post-tailgating pains, but they are involved with local communities around the country to end hunger. This season, they are donating 1 million meals to families in need through Taste of the NFL and they’re encouraging all of us football fans to join them in the fight against hunger. By visiting YouCantBeatZero.com, you can donate to food banks in your local communities, including Food Bank of the Rockies, right here in Denver! You can also enter for a chance to win a trip to Super Bowl 50 – you can’t beat that!
After consuming more ribs than I am proud of (especially while trying to make an NFL football player fall in love with me), we got a sneak peak into the TAG kitchen as they made barbecue rib magic happen, with the help of my new favorite Denver Bronco.
Feeling inspired, I took stab at tackling the delicious homegating treat.
Typically I stick to pastas, cheese and anything that can be deliver right to my door, but when Demarcus Ware shares his rib recipe, you listen. While home for the holidays and only 12 shorts hours after our extravagant Thanksgiving dinner, I embarked on my first ever rib endeavor. I pulled a seasoned rib veteran up from my bench to help me; my dad. Although, it should be noted that my dad infamously caught an entire rack of ribs on fire, so to be honest, maybe he’s more like Tim Tebow than Peyton Manning. But I figured it would be a learning experience for both of us. Also, a shoutout to the real MVP: my moms. For letting me destroy the kitchen and unnecessarily add to the already overwhelming amount of leftovers.
Let’s do this.
- 2 lbs. bacon
- 1 large onion, sliced thin
- 8 cloves garlic, whole and peeled
- 5 cups of ketchup (almost a whole family-sized bottle)
- 2 cups of apple cider vinegar
- 2 cups of brown sugar
- 1 cup of Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 cup of Bourbon
- 2 1/2 cups of cola
- 1 cup of paprika
- 1/4 cup of granulated garlic
- 1/4 cup of Kosher salt
- 1/4 cup of black pepper
- 1/4 cup of brown sugar
- Mix all ingredients well
NOTE: Not included in the recipe list? Ribs. I went with three racks of ribs. I halved the dry rub recipe, and had the perfect amount for 3 racks. I did NOT half the BBQ sauce recipe and ended up with over 10 cups of barbecue sauce. I recommend halving both recipes, or getting a lot (Maybe 6? Idk.) more ribs.
- In a pot, sweat the bacon, onion and garlic over medium heat with a small amount (1 tablespoon) of cooking oil.
- I googled it, so you didn’t have to. From what I can gather “sweating”, in the food world, means to cook something over low heat in a small amount of fat, usually in a covered pan or pot.
- Cook until the bacon and onion begin to brown (15ish minutes), and add the remainder of the ingredients.
- Simmer the BBQ sauce for one hour
- Blend then strain
- As I write this now, I am realizing that “blend” probably meant in a blender or food processor…or maybe not…I’m not sure. Someone try it and let me know what happens.
- Coat the uncooked ribs with the dry rub. Allow to sit covered in the refrigerator overnight (or if you are a slacker, 2 hours).
- Prior to this, my dear father suggested that we removed the tough white membrane that covers the bony side of the rib. I tried this, strongly considered becoming a vegetarian, and then let my pops do the rest. He may not have the cooking part down quite yet, but the man can prep some ribs. #blessed
- The cook, place the ribs flat on a sheet tray in one layer. Add about 1/2 inch of water to the sheet tray. Cover the sheet tray tightly with aluminum foil.
- Cook the ribs at 350 degrees F for two hours or until ribs are tender (aka the meat is falling off the bone, or close to it).
ChillCool (chill makes me think that the ribs are supposed to go back in the fridge, which doesn’t feel right…I let mine rest on the stove top. If you are in fact supposed to let them “chill”, someone please let me know.) ribs and then cut into individual riblets.
- To finish, coat the ribs in BBQ sauce and roast in a 350 degrees F oven for about 10 minutes.
- Plate and add more sauce, as desired.
I gotta say, for my first attempt at ribs, I was impressed.The meat fell of the bone and nothing caught on fire, so my ribs are already considered a success in the Schnicke household. I could pretend to talk about the barbecue flavors as if I knew what I was talking about, but it would be a disservice to both of us and a disgrace to true barbecuers. I will say, it was easy, delicious and much more satisfying than barbecue sauce of out the bottle. My only recommendation would be some cayenne pepper in the dry rub, because who doesn’t like it hot!
All in all, a really fun learning experience. That said, I think I’ll leave the rib king status to Mr. Gregory , of Cincinnati’s own Montgomery Inn and stick to easier, cheesier dishes for my next homegating adventure.
Please note: My dad only assisted during TV timeouts of the OSU v. Michigan game.