GUESS WHAT I LEARNED IN QUARANTINE?
I learned that people get sick of cooking. I live in a retirement community, and most of my neighbors are not just retired, but many are also elderly. Sure, restaurants were still available for takeout, however, it was a 1 1/2 to 2 hour wait. And sure, you could offer to pick up groceries for your elderly neighbors, but guess what? They still had to take those groceries inside and prepare them, and that’s where everything gets exhausting for them. It can be exhausting to cook every single meal! I would know–I’m a stay-at-home mom.
INSPIRED FROM A FAR
I was on facebook, and one of my husband’s co-workers smoked a huge rack of ribs, vacuum sealed it, and left it on the front porch for his neighbors (who may have needed a break from cooking), to come by and grab. You see, in the event of a “quarantine outbreak,” hot meals, in my opinion, are the best meals to take to your neighbors. They come out of an oven, and they can be popped into an oven to “reheat.” For those of you who enjoy studying your scriptures, I like to use the phrase, “cleansed by fire.” It’s a great way to take care of your neighbors, while also still looking out for them, and remembering the “bigger” picture.
EASY COOKING FOR THE MASSES
If you need to feed a lot of people, and make a lot of deliveries all at once–“Hot and Ready” Baby Back Ribs are the way to go. I was able to make a total of 10 meals out of 3 racks of ribs. Most of my neighbors live in two person households, so I sent a couple slices of the ribs, with a baked potato, and a “pre-bagged” salad mix from the grocery store—you know, to be sanitary during quarantine. Everybody knew I was coming in advance, and everyone was appreciative. It was an easy way to reach out, check in, AND give my “retired” neighbors a night off from cooking.
“Hot and Ready” Baby Back Ribs Recipe
You Will Need Your Favorite Dry Rub and Your Favorite BBQ Sauce: I personally used a Maple BBQ Dry Rub, and Sweet Honey BBQ
Ingredients and Supplies:
Baby Back Ribs (Baby Pork Loin Back Ribs)
- Coat your Ribs with a dry rub and place on a large sheet pan.
- Smoke ribs, uncovered, for one hour (I have a smoke setting on my Traeger grill that is about 180 degrees for smoking. I also use a “mixed” wood pellet blend—just use your favorite).
- Then, after smoking for an hour, cover your ribs with foil and turn up the heat to 275 degrees. Bake your foil-covered ribs at 275 degrees for an additional 2 and 1/2 hours.
- Then, uncover your ribs, brush with BBQ sauce, and turn heat up to 350 degrees. Cook ribs uncovered at 350 degrees for at least 30 more minutes to caramelize them.
The BBQ sauce should be lightly caramelized on the ribs before removing them from the heat, and the meat should tenderly pull off the bone when the ribs are done. I live in a hot climate, and so my grill heats up quickly. Pay attention to your climate and seasons when making these ribs. Make necessary adjustments to achieve the same end results. A cooler climate may require a longer cook time.