Serves 6 to 8
6 tablespoons brown sugar
6 tablespoons paprika
3 tablespoons ground black pepper
3 tablespoons garlic powder
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
3 slabs of pork spareribs or 4 slabs of baby-back ribs
9 tablespoons (1/2 cup + 1 tablespoon Dijon or yellow mustard
2 teaspoons liquid smoke (optional)
Your favorite barbecue sauce
1. Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and preheat the broiler. Mix sugar, paprika, pepper, garlic, and salt in a small bowl. Mix mustard and optional liquid smoke in a small bowl. Brush both sides of each slab with mustard, and then sprinkle both sides with the dry rub.
2. Line a large jelly-roll pan or other shallow roasting pan with a sheet of foil large enough to cover the oven floor (or one of racks if the electric coil is installed in the oven floor). There should be enough foil overhang on the pan so that all slabs fit. (If not, cut one of the slabs in half.)
3. Broil the ribs, moving the pan around so that they evenly brown. Remove pan from oven, and then place the broiled ribs directly on the oven rack. Place the foil-lined pan on the oven floor (if oven is gas) or bottom oven rack (if oven is electric), making sure that foil covers the entire oven level. Roast ribs at 250 degrees until fork tender, 2 to 3 hours for spare ribs and 1 1/2 to 2 hours for baby backs.
5. If coating the ribs with barbecue sauce, remove foil-lined pan from oven, pouring off excess fat. Transfer ribs from oven rack to foil-lined pan, meat side down. Turn on broiler.
6. Brush ribs with half the sauce or glaze, return rack to oven and broil until glaze bubbles vigorously. Remove rack from oven, turn ribs over, brush with remaining glaze, return to oven and broil until glaze bubbles vigorously. Let stand 5 to 10 minutes, cut into individual ribs and serve.