In medium bowl, stir together all marinade ingredients; pour over ribs in heavy, resealable plastic bag. Seal bag and refrigerate for 4-6 hours.
Turn the ribs two or three times while marinating. Prepare an indirect medium fire in grill, with a drip pan in the center. For a gas grill heat grill to medium and turn off any burners directly below where the food will go. With the lid closed, the indirect heat method serves as an oven, circulating heat evenly throughout.
Remove ribs from marinade (discarding marinade), place in rib rack and place on grill over drip pan, away from the heat. Cover grill and grill for 1 1/2 hours, until rib meat is very tender. Transfer the ribs to a cutting board, cut into serving portions.
Serve Vietnamese Dipping Sauce to accompany ribs.
Recipe by Steven Raichlen, author of Barbecue Bible.
* wear plastic gloves to protect hands when handling chiles
2 racks pork back ribs, about 4 pound total
4 stalks lemon grass, chopped (white part and some pale green)
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 shallots, finely chopped
1 2-inch piece fresh ginger root, grated, about 2 1/2 tablespoons
2 Thai chiles, (or 4-5 jalapenos), seeded and thinly sliced*
1 cup fresh cilantro, chopped
3 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons coriander
1 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup soy sauce
3 tablespoons fish sauce
3 tablespoons lemon juice
1/3 cup vegetable oil