This is something that has been on my to-do list for ages. I cook pork ribs (baby backs, spare ribs etc) quite frequently, and I always think of the McDonalds faux-rib burger the McRib. I had previously tried a couple of variations - one of which, not at all remaining true to the original, being taking the ribs just past being cooked so the bones slide out real easily, cutting out a 4 bone section or so and slapping that in a bun. That was super tasty, but just the same way ribs are tasty, it didn’t really add anything to the dish and definitely wasn’t reminiscent of the original.
I had plans to create a McRib from leftovers, but unsurprisingly I never actually end up with leftovers when I cook ribs. So it really took planning.
So whilst cooking another meal (to make sure I wasn’t relying on leftovers), I had some individual pork ribs (I didn’t split them intentionally, just got them that way) that I hit up with some Angus & Oink Pigasus rub and threw on the Weber Smokey Mountain at the same time for a low and slow cook. They were cooked with a basic 3-2-1 technique (3 hours smoked, 2 hours wrapped in foil and a final 1 hour unwrapped again) and were then transferred straight to the fridge to cool. The next day I stripped the meat off the ribs and put into a food processor along with 400 grams sausage meat and blitzed it all together. That was then formed into patty shapes (including the fake rib groves!) and fried up in a cast iron skillet. Towards the end of the cook I glazed them with some bbq sauce to reduce a bit and then served up on a soft white bun along with a bunch of sauces.
Honestly its been so long that I had a McRib that I can’t really tell you how close they were - but one thing I can say is they were a perfect porky blend of soft sausage meat and real smoke tastes, definitely a winner in my book.
- 4 McRib burgers
- 10 minutes + overnight cooling (its a long one!)
- 5 hours smoking + 10 minutes cooking the burger
- 1 rack of pork ribs. I used 500grams pork spare ribs which was about 5 individual but very meaty ribs
- 400 grams pork sausage meat
- BBQ rub to season the ribs pre-smoking - I used Angus & Oink Pigasus, but use your favourite
- Your favourite BBQ sauce
- 4 soft white buns and any condiments you want to add
- If you are cooking a rack of ribs, cook them as you usually would - remove the thin white membrane from the underside of the ribs and season generously with your favourite rub
- Smoke low-and-slow - I normally cook for anywhere between 4-6 hours at around 110 degrees centigrade, depending on the thickness of the ribs, with up to the last three hours wrapped in foil, but check on them as you go, baby backs can normally be done in less than 4 hours if you wrap them
- Once cooked, transfer to the fridge and let cool overnight
- Once cooled, strip the meat off the ribs and put them in a food processor along with the 400 grams sausage meat. At this point you can also add in a generous squirt of BBQ sauce to mix through
- Take the processed meat out and form into 4 individual patties - you can shape them into faux rib shapes with grooves if you are feeling especially nostalgic
- Cook the patties either on the grill over a high heat or in a skillet - probably around 10 minutes (again depending on thickness of the patty).
- When they are looking done, give the patties a glaze of bbq sauce and cook a bit further so it reduces and goes slightly sticky
- Transfer the patties to buns and construct with sauce and condiments as you please and eat immediately
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