But my taste in ribs was canalized as a child, which means I greatly favor the ribs that my mother prepared as well as the type of ribs served by Chinese restaurants. No smoking allowed. As a young adult, I ate my share of ribs at a restaurant in Commack, New York, appropriately called The Spare Rib, and those arrived at the table smoke-free, but heavily sauced, just like Mom's. Despite the complete absence of smoke, these are all understood to be barbecue ribs, and in conclusion, if New Yorkers are not particularly authentic in our rendition of barbecue, we are absolutely delicious.
My mother made the best barbecue ribs I have ever eaten, and it is all about her barbecue sauce. The ribs are oven-roasted in two stages, the second stage involving a lavish application of sauce. She never used a grill in her life, and in my parents' world, smoking was reserved for whitefish and other Jewish delicacies, and store-bought bacon; otherwise, pork should be eaten fresh.
The secret to her sauce is the main ingredient: Log Cabin Original Syrup. Don't get saucy and try to substitute real maple syrup - it will not work. The other important ingredients are ketchup and mustard - it has to be Heinz ketchup, and no fancy mustard either. For this you want the yellow stuff. At any one time we have 6 or 7 different types of mustards open in the refrigerator, but the only time I have a bottle of French's yellow mustard in there is when I'm planning to make my mother's barbecue sauce. Just like real maple syrup doesn't work, neither does Grey Poupon Dijon. And as you might imagine, this sauce works very well on chicken.
I'll be posting the amounts and procedures over on the recipe blog in a day or so. Once you make this sauce, you will never want to be without it.
Cook like there's nobody watching, and eat like it's heaven on earth.