Thanks for your insights guys. Meat quality here in the Philippines is variable and you are stuck with what they have. I might get better cuts, but only if I buy at the public market where meat sits out unrefrigerated. I buy the better "supermarket" where the meat is at least kept in a cool display counter.
The brining was in a 7 percent solution (by weight water to salt- 1 kilo water/70 grams salt), and the meat did come out rather "hammy". I used the Memphis Dust Rub that Meathead Goldwyn has on his website. Which should not have made it very salty, given that the recipe is 3 cups of various ingredients total and only 1/4 cup of that was salt. And then only 1 tablespoon per side was applied per his "Vermont Pig Candy" recipe. My next couple of efforts will not include brine for the ribs, which up to now has worked very well when cooking (not smoking) pork chops and chicken in the kitchen.
Thanks for the save idea dadsr4. That is a good idea.
So let's get to the core of my problem. Is there a way to tell where the ribs are in terms of cook time? I had thought the bone pulling back was an indication, but these did not show that until the tail end of the cook. Goldwyn's instructions for wrapping was to do it at 150F, which the largest section of the ribs measured. However to get into the "boat" since I didn't individually wrap, they had to be cut down to fit.
And, in fact, most ribs are cut in half and are smaller. I am uncertain how to do the bend test, though I've seen it on videos, but with full racks. Does it work on smaller or partial racks too? I am committed to figuring this out. Any guides for checking where the ribs are will be appreciated. I have an instant read thermometer that is accurate. I will try the bend test if that is possible with the shorter, smaller racks here, and I will shorten my times down to something similar to baby backs. Anything else I can do or look for?
I want to turn out some juicy ribs with good smoke. and these definitely had a pretty good smoke, though availability of wood is limited to small commercial packs of shredded wood generally intended for gas grills. Since the whole aluminum packet smokes very quickly, I break it down into two packages and add them sequentially. That gives me about 45 minutes of smoke, but it is a bit heavy, so I may break them down into 3 or 4 packages so that it doesn't all go so quickly. A minor problem actually.
The one thing that did work pretty well was the glaze. I had pure maple syrup grade A. It does not have the serious maple hit I was expecting, but it was good. If grade B syrup was available, I'd definitely go use that and save the better grade for Sunday breakfast.
Another Tandang Overseas - Weber 22.5 OTG/Smokenator 1000/Pizza Kettle - 2 Thermapens - Mabuhay BBQ