Trying to re-create this life-changing plate of meat and bones at home, I stumbled across a pretty tasty sounding maple syrup BBQ sauce, and from her description of the ribs I guessed them to be the meaty St. Louis variety.
1/4 cup sweet paprika (use 1/2 pimenton if you have some for a smokier flavor)
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon garlic powder
2 teaspoons cumin
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons cayenne
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
for the dry rub:
Mix all ingredients in a bowl, set aside.
for the sauce:
In a medium sauce pan heat the oil over medium heat, then add the onion, garlic, ginger, cayenne and black pepper. Cook until the onion is translucent, then add the vinegar, water, tomato paste, soy sauce, sesame oil, and maple syrup. Whisk well to fully incorporate the tomato paste. Add the thyme, mustard and 1/2 of the salt. Simmer on low heat for 30 minutes.
Purée the sauce with a stick blender (or run it through an upright blender), taste for seasoning and add the balance of the salt if desired. Use right away, or place in a large covered jar and refrigerate for up to two weeks.
to make the ribs:
Trim the ribs of any thick slabs of fat, and remove the membrane from the underside of the ribs. The best way to do this is to start a bit of it with a sharp paring knife, then using a paper towel to help with your grip, gently peel the membrane from the rib bones. Check out this video for a look see.
Generously coat both sides of the racks of ribs with the dry rub and rub it in well. You may not use all the rub, but you should use most of it. Place the ribs (meaty side up) on a foil covered, rimmed sheet pan and place in the fridge to marinate for 5-6 hours.
Heat the oven to 225℉ and set a rack in the middle. Place the sheet pan with the ribs in the oven and cook for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, rotating the pan front-to-back a few times to ensure even cooking, until the ribs are done. To check for done-ness, pick a rack up from the center with a set of tongs. When fully cooked, the rack will droop like an upside down U, and the meat at the center will start to crack.
Pull the ribs from the oven and set the oven to BROIL.
Slather the ribs on both sides with sauce, then place back in the oven and broil until the ribs are bubbling and the sauce is set, about 4-5 minutes.
Pull from the oven and transfer to a cutting board. Cut into individual ribs and serve, passing extra sauce at the table.