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chuckd83
09-21-2010, 05:04 PM
I'm doing my first competition in a few weeks and need advice on planning cooking times. I always estimate brisket by 1 hr per pound and then cook by temperature since every piece of meat is different. If it takes longer, no big deal, we just eat later. But obviously I'm not afforded that luxury given turn-in times. So I was thinking 1 1/2 hrs per pound to be sure to have enough time, but then I didn't want it to sit in the cooler for 5 hours if it's done quicker. So I was thinking:

brisket - 1hr 20min per pound
pork spare ribs - 5 1/2 hrs
chicken half - 1 1/2 hr

Thoughts?

Ron_L
09-21-2010, 05:18 PM
My best advice is to do a full practice cook and record everything. That will help you figure out your timing and help fine tune your equipment list.

ZILLA
09-21-2010, 05:24 PM
Is it an IBCA or a Texas Gulf Coast event?

If your brisket is done a few hour ahead that's great. Then you can let it rest wrapped up in a cooler until turn in time.

5 1/2 for ribs might be ok depending how and at what temp you're cooking them.

1 1/2 for chicken? It's too long for grilling and not long enough for smoking. How are you cooking your meat?

Like Ron suggested, do a full practice cook while you time the whole thing. Have your chicken ready at 12:00pm ribs at 1:30pm and brisket at 3:00pm. That is probably close to what your turn in times will be. Keep notes and adjust from there. Good luck and have fun.

What cook off is it?

Coz
09-21-2010, 05:26 PM
Going along with what Ron said is you may learn your times may change with the quantity and timing of a full comp load.Better to be done early and resting in a cambro or a cooler then not getting done.

CBQ
09-21-2010, 07:16 PM
...but then I didn't want it to sit in the cooler for 5 hours if it's done quicker.

That really won't hurt anything if it's a high quality cooler.

ZILLA
09-21-2010, 07:52 PM
While resting brisket is fine resting ribs and chicken is not such a great idea. Both chicken and ribs need to come off the smoker and go right in the turn containers. That's why timing is critical at a comp.

Sledneck
09-21-2010, 08:10 PM
While resting brisket is fine resting ribs and chicken is not such a great idea. Both chicken and ribs need to come off the smoker and go right in the turn containers. That's why timing is critical at a comp.

ribs can be rested.

ZILLA
09-21-2010, 08:20 PM
Meat wise, yes of course they can be rested. However, if saucing ribs when cooking comp in Texas the sauce has to be cooked on. Resting them would not do the finished product any favors in appearance. The beautiful glaze would suffer. I guess dry ribs wouldn't matter.

Captain P.J.
09-21-2010, 09:27 PM
Also weather could be an issue... wind and rain will or could (depending on your equipment) cause all sorts of extra "fun"... It is nice to have some extra time built in... So I agree with all of those that getting done a little early is ok.

SMOKEHUNTERS
09-21-2010, 09:38 PM
I couldnt agree with Ron L and Coz more. Had I done that last weekend on the new pit I may have gotten a call. Practice ahead of time!!!

Frank Sacco
09-21-2010, 10:06 PM
Times vary depending upon pits, weight of meat, weather and pitmasters perspective of what's good to them and there liking. To many variables for me to put a specific time on a category. I'd run a practice cook to get some times down on paper.

CBQ
09-21-2010, 10:17 PM
ribs can be rested.

Aye, Sledneck is right. Just glaze the ribs AFTER resting just before turn ins. Normally the brisket and pork are the harder ones to "hurry up", so planning for an early finish on those isn't a bad idea.

Sticks-n-chicks
09-21-2010, 10:18 PM
Practice is best so you know how much time you need. Really depends on cook temp to determine time. We cook hot (350-400) and finish briskets in 4 1/2 hours for a packer and 3 1/2 - 4 for a flat. When we used to cook slow we would fire up the smoker around 11:00pm and get it up to 225-240 and start the butts and briskets at 12:00am we'd plan for 5 hours on the ribs and 2 1/2 - 3 hours for chicken. One thing that has helped us once we had our times down was to allot for building the boxes, not the parsley portion which we do friday night, but what pieces of meat we want to use, doctoring time and putting the meat in the box. I like to have the butts and brisket resting for 1 1/2 -2 hours before turn in and the Ribs and chicken off the smoker 15 prior to turn in.

Good luck and most of all HAVE FUN!

ZILLA
09-22-2010, 07:55 AM
Aye, Sledneck is right. Just glaze the ribs AFTER resting just before turn ins. Normally the brisket and pork are the harder ones to "hurry up", so planning for an early finish on those isn't a bad idea.

Funny that you all fall into the KCBScentric mode time after time. There is nothing else, I forgot, Sorry.....Folks Chuck d83 is from Houston, Yes I'm guessing here but, he is probably cooking a Texas event. You cannot sauce after you pull the meat from the smoker. The sauce must be cooked on. He would be disqualified if he took your advice CBQ.

chuckd83
09-22-2010, 07:58 AM
Is it an IBCA or a Texas Gulf Coast event?

If your brisket is done a few hour ahead that's great. Then you can let it rest wrapped up in a cooler until turn in time.

5 1/2 for ribs might be ok depending how and at what temp you're cooking them.

1 1/2 for chicken? It's too long for grilling and not long enough for smoking. How are you cooking your meat?

Like Ron suggested, do a full practice cook while you time the whole thing. Have your chicken ready at 12:00pm ribs at 1:30pm and brisket at 3:00pm. That is probably close to what your turn in times will be. Keep notes and adjust from there. Good luck and have fun.

What cook off is it?

Thanks everybody for the advice. I'm definitely busy on the weekends until then so I won't be able to do a trial run. It's the Harris County Fair BBQ (TGCBCA) on Oct. 16.

I said 1 1/2 for chicken because I'm not quite sure what I'm going to do for that. The pit will have to stay at 225-250 until the brisket turn-in at 4p so I won't be able to increase the heat for the chicken (turn-in at 12p). Maybe smoke it and then stick it on top of the fire box for a few minutes to crisp up the skin?

ZILLA
09-22-2010, 08:11 AM
Chuck, if I were you I would grill the birds over direct heat. Smoked chicken is not winning these days or winning very little. You could buy or bring any cheapo backyard charcoal grill and cook the chicken on that and be better off. If you decide to smoke it then you will need to put it in the hottest part of the smoker and will probably take closer to 2 hr's but as the good advice above stated you really need to do a full on practice cook to see how it all works out timewise. I'm sending in my entry for this contest today so I'll see you there.

chuckd83
09-22-2010, 08:40 AM
Chuck, if I were you I would grill the birds over direct heat. Smoked chicken is not winning these days or winning very little. You could buy or bring any cheapo backyard charcoal grill and cook the chicken on that and be better off. If you decide to smoke it then you will need to put it in the hottest part of the smoker and will probably take closer to 2 hr's but as the good advice above stated you really need to do a full on practice cook to see how it all works out timewise. I'm sending in my entry for this contest today so I'll see you there.

Yah, I think I'll just put it on the hottest part. Maybe you know better than I do, but in the rules it said "One Chief Cook - One Pit." I take that to mean no extra grill as you suggested. I would definitely do that if allowed. Also reading the TGCBCA rules, they do not allow garnish. I guess we'll find all of this out at the cook's meeting.

I'm glad to hear you'll make it! I'll look around for you. Will you have that "Giant BBQ" logo? We'll be the most amateur looking space!!

ZILLA
09-22-2010, 09:15 AM
Chuck, I'm a certified judging official with TGCBCA. One head cook can have as many pits as they like. That rule you are referring to means that each head cook has to have their own pit. So Two teams are not allowed to cook on one pit, that is the purpose of the rule. You could have a separate pit for each meat if you wanted.

chuckd83
09-22-2010, 09:31 AM
Now I'm confused. We were planning on bringing 3 pits because we're also cooking for Church Under the Bridge (http://1000hills.org/) that weekend and would never be able to do meat for 150+ on one pit. I asked Dolores if we could have multiple pits and she said "...that is not a problem. As long as you only turn in entries off one pit." Maybe she doesn't know the purpose of the rule?

ZILLA
09-22-2010, 09:53 AM
Delores is a contact person in the group organizing the event. She is not a TGCBCA official.

One team with one head cook can cook on ten pits if they like. If there is another team cooking with you (team # 2) with a second head cook, their food cannot be pulled from the same pits as team # 1 that is the purpose of the rule.

The BBQ you're making for CUTB is irrelevant to what you cook for comp

chuckd83
09-22-2010, 10:12 AM
Well that makes things a lot easier. Thanks for the help!