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bigabyte 01-14-2008 12:11 AM

Mad Science Experiment - Burning Ingredients
As some of you may recall, I have done some experiments in the past to test certain ingredients in rubs, sauces, etc., to see what really happens to them when you cook them at BBQ temps in a smoker. For reference, my original thread on this, along with info on how I set up the experiment is here:

I tested 18 more ingredients today. I followed the exact same methods as previously for preparing the meat and ingredients, applying the ingredients, and for cooking. All variables were the same except for the ingredients being tested.

White Grape Juice Concentrate (Welch's 100%, frozen) - Minor sweet boost to meat. Tasted good. No burnt flavor. No grape flavor either.

Concorde Grape Juice Concentrate (Welch's 100%, frozen) - Minor sweet boost to meat. Tasty. No burnt flavor. Had a slight hint of grape flavor.

Apple Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen) - More sweet was transferred to the meat than the Grape juices, but was still a fairly mild sweet. Tasted good. No burnt flavor. No noticeable apple flavor.

Cranberry Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen) - Not much sweet boost at all, if any. Had a good flavor though. No burnt taste. Could not really distinguish any cranberry flavor but it may come through in a something like turkey or chicken perhaps.

Orange Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen) - Very minor boost in sweetness. Could pick up on the orange flavor though. Not bad. No burnt flavor.

Pineapple Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen) - This one made me go "Mmmmmm" when I tasted it. It added some sweet flavor, more than any other of the juice concentrates, but still not as much as the other sweeteners I have tested. Flavor was really good. I could not really distinguish the pineapple taste, it mingled with the pork. The meat seemed more tender than the other pieces, which was another thing I was curious about.

Dry Herbs, Spices
Habanero Powder ( - Heat was significantly reduced but there was still a bit of an afterburner on it. Habanero flavor was still there. It tasted pretty good actually. No burnt flavor at all.

Jalapeno Powder ( - Heat was greatly reduced and somewhat mild. Jalapeno flavor also reduced but still there. No burnt flavor.

Celery Flakes (Tones) - Very, very little flavor left. I could detect something green and herby but it was too faint to really tell it was celery. No burnt flavor.

Dill Weed (Tones) - Hardly any flavor left. I think I tasted some dill, but may have been fooling myself. No burnt flavor.

Lemon Pepper (Tones) - Not much flavor of lemon survived. I could still taste some of the garlic and pepper, but not really picking up any lemon flavor. No burnt taste.

Lime Pepper (Tones) - Still tasted like Lime pepper, though a little bit more subdued. No burnt flavor.

Fresh Herbs, Pastes, Sauces
Garlic Paste (Amore) - Garlic flavor survived and was still somewhat strong, but not as strong as I was expecting. No burnt flavor.

Anchovy Paste (Giovanni) - At first I could not taste anchovy, but noticed that it had blended with the pork to make an interesting new flavor. It as pretty good. No burnt taste. The anchovy flavor came in loud an clear in the aftertaste however.

Almond Butter (Whole Foods fresh ground) - I could not detect any almond flavor. The bark did not firm up and was kind of pasty. No burnt taste.

Peanut Butter (Jif) - No noticeable peanut flavor. Bark was pasty on this one as well. No burnt taste.

Fish Sauce (Thai Kitchen) - Very subtle at first with a more noticeable aftertaste. No burnt flavor.

Miso (South River, White) - There was no miso flavor, but the meat had taken on a new flavor. It tasted good. No burnt flavors.

butts a fire 01-14-2008 08:20 AM

That is interesting Great experimenting I would have never thought of putting anchovy paste on the meat to be grilled. Pretty cool.

aaromrecords 01-14-2008 10:25 AM

That is unbelievable! Amazing work.

Cuelio 01-14-2008 10:40 AM

You ARE the mad bbq scientist, bro. I'll have to give Pineapple a try. I've always used apple. Thanks for your research!

CarbonToe 01-14-2008 11:17 AM


Originally Posted by bigabyte (Post 536641)
Orange Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen)

Pineapple Juice Concentrate (Old Orchard 100%, frozen)

I know you are slathering the meat and then popping it in the cooker but I thought it was worth mentioning that the above juices are acidic so any meat placed in it for a period of time will start to break down, which isn't always a bad thing.

I do like reading your experiments, keep them up

wnkt 01-14-2008 02:31 PM

Maybe you need a second person in the taste tests ...a blind tasting to verify your "hint of flavors" isnt your expecting to find them......I would like to volunteer my services for the cause. I know its a sacrifice, but one Im willing to make.

now I just have to make it to Kansas somehow..

BobBrisket 01-14-2008 02:36 PM

How have you used peanut butter? Inquiring minds want to know. Also, do you apply these ingredients at the beginning only or as the cook progresses?

bigabyte 01-14-2008 06:10 PM


Originally Posted by BobBrisket (Post 537007)
How have you used peanut butter? Inquiring minds want to know. Also, do you apply these ingredients at the beginning only or as the cook progresses?

I took about a tablespoon worth of peanut butter, dropped it onto the meat, then with both hands I spread it all around. Then sprinkled with salt as per normal peanut butter standards.

I applied all ingredients jsut before putting on the cooker. The link in the first post tells exactly the measurements of the ingredietns and how they are applied in a standard sense. For liquid sweeteners, I mix the salt and sweetener together in a bowl and toss the meat with it until it is well covered.

digger bear 01-14-2008 08:13 PM

Thanks for doing that experiment- I just learned a lot!!!

Meat Burner 01-14-2008 09:11 PM

Really appreciate your posts like this. THANKS!!!!!

Brewmaster 01-14-2008 09:38 PM

Very interesting reading. Thank you. How do you eat that much food?? :biggrin:

bigabyte 01-14-2008 10:39 PM

All that sampling was last nights dinner!:redface: The experiment before this one was probably twice as big, and I was extraordinarily stuffed after that go-around. That is why I did not do so much this time around.

I've thought about other taste testers, but these aren't normally something people want to eat. Plain pork smoked with just salt and anise seed may not be too enticing if you know what I mean. Especially if some of the experiments may come out with nasty burnt flavors. Also, to save space and money I cook up smaller bits of meat, about 1/3 of a rib for each test. While I only take a couple or three bites out of each one, there really isn't much left. If I sliced them in half before sampling I would have enough for another person to test out. Guinea Pigs....oops I mean interested volunteers are welcome!:mrgreen:

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