Originally Posted by Lake Dogs
I hear ya, but often they're not saying "use less salt", they're saying "cooked too long" when it was actually "mushy" or worse it was actually "tough" and they thought it was cooked too long, when in either of those cases the cook chose the wrong piece of meat that was mushy (otherwise cooked to perfection) or it was tough because it was under-cooked. More often than not what they're recommending doesn't tell you what was wrong. In the example given at the start, what was wrong with the meat. Honestly, as a competition cook, I have no idea. "Need to inject"? Why? Was it too dry? Was it bland? Was the judge a moron? We're left to guess. I'm choosing option 3. My guess is that he/she has no idea what injecting has to do with it. For that matter, what if they DID inject? What was the value of that response? Some of injecting is WHAT you inject with, so as to assist in breaking down fats, or NOT to assist. It was a very bizarre recommendation.
I'd rather, as a cook, them say point blank what the problem is. As a cook, with any luck, I can figure out how to fix it. More often than not I've cooked 1,000 more butts than they have (seriously). I LOVE feedback, positive and negative. Give it, but dont critique the cooking method if you have no clue as to what I've done. A rookie or new team, if they dont understand how/what to change to fix the problem; they've always got bbq-brethren, right?
And this is the very crux of my question. Not as much a complaint, but a question, as to what can be done to help the judges who wish to provide an actual positive criticism the correct manner in which to do so.
As a cook and judge, I try to see both sides of the coin, and have NEVER thought to question HOW a meat was cooked, only the results. Are judges not speciically instructed to judge the meat AS PRESENTED; not, preperation methodology?