If NASCAR and BBQ ribs sound like a winning combination, then let me tell you about the Smithfield Whole Hog Challenge. Throughout the 2015 racing season, Smithfield is hosting an eating contest at various Sprint Cup races with the winners receiving trips to future NASCAR races.
August 22 – Bristol, Tennessee
September 12 – Richmond, Virginia
October 10 – Charlotte, North Carolina
October 25 – Talladega, Alabama
November 1 – Martinsville, Virginia
November 8 – Fort Worth, Texas
After the Whole Hog Challenge I was invited to join the 43 team for dinner. Fueling the 43 team up before the big race Chef Justin Leo, from American Q, prepared a Smithfield buffet that included ribs (of course), CCC stuffed peppers, bacon macaroni and cheese and corn bread pudding. Oh my yum!
Ancho Chile Rubbed St. Louis Style Pork Spareribs
- 2 Smithfield Extra Tender St. Louis Style Pork Spareribs
- 1/4 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon coffee grounds fine ground
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon cumin
- 4 dried ancho chiles seeded and stemmed
- 1 jalapeno seeded and stemmed
- 1 yellow onion cut in half
- 2 large tomatoes
- 1/2 bunch cilantro stems removed
- 4 limes juiced
- 1/2 cup cider vinegar
- 1 cup brown sugar
- Mix all ingredients well in a small mixing bowl and set aside for ribs.
- Grill ancho peppers lightly until crisp.
- Grill jalapeno, onion, and tomatoes until charred and blistered.
- Place ancho peppers, jalapeno, onion, tomatoes, and cilantro in blender and blend until smooth.
- Add lime juice and continue to blend until smooth.
- Remove mixture from blender and place in a saucepot with the cider vinegar and brown sugar.
- Cook for 15 minutes over low heat or until sugar is dissolved and sauce is syrup in consistency.
- Place ribs on a baking sheet and season liberally on both sides with the rub.
- Let stand room temperature for 15-20 minutes.
- Place ribs in a 225°F pre-heated smoker with hickory wood or chips for best flavor.
- Cook for approximately 4-5 hours or until internal temperature reaches 170°F.
- Remove ribs from smoker and place on a high heat grill.
- Baste ribs with pre-made sauce and cook until a nice patina shows ensuring a thick coating of sauce.
- Cut ribs and enjoy!
NASCAR fans know that the Coke Zero 400 had a late start due to the rain, but there is plenty to see and do at Sprint Cup races to keep fans entertained. Including this little piggy golf cart making its way though the crowd announcing its arrival with snorts and grunts.