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Old 08-19-2019, 01:29 PM   #1
frayedend
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Default Burnt ends, I'm a purist apparently...

As far as BBQ goes I'm a newbie. Years ago I had "burnt ends" on a sandwich here in Massachusetts. It wasn't awesome, but not bad. Anyhow I've read a little bit on burnt ends and I had an idea in my head of exactly what they are supposed to be.

But coming to this forum and a few pages on Facebook I've seen pork belly burnt ends, as well as other recipes that had me confused. First I see that only the point is used for brisket burnt ends. Myron Dixon is one who says you can't use the flat for burnt ends. Aaron Franklin says the deckle is the spot where burnt ends originated.

I just watched a short documentary (link below) on burnt ends and it confirmed my belief that they originated from the crispy bits at the ends of a brisket. But the documentary goes on to show how burnt ends have evolved into a menu item rather than just a bi-product. The recipe they show in the video isn't burnt ends, it's brisket point cooked properly and cubed. I see no reason they would call it burnt ends.

I'm pretty sure the original burnt ends came from point and flat, and were mixed up together so there was enough fat to moisten the flat. I'm also guessing Aaron Franklin has less of this meat because he pays so much attention to trimming off anything that may burn. I sort of disagree with him on this for 2 reasons. I'd rather the extra fat and meat protect the good meat from drying out, and I want more burnt ends. :)

Am I completely wrong here? Am I just too anal about bbq. :)

http://www.pbs.org/food/shows/burnt-...ry-burnt-ends/
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Old 08-19-2019, 02:17 PM   #2
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Oh boy, the saga of burnt ends is always lively conversation. It gets livelier when the conversation involves their origin. Yes, there are brisket burnt ends, faux burnt ends, pork butt burnt ends, pork belly burnt ends and I've even made pastrami burnt ends. Today most brisket burnt ends are made from the point. There is no deckle on a brisket, the deckle is a bony strip that is removed during butchering, but some refer to the point as the deckle. You are correct about burnt ends evolving from cutting board scraps. Here is a snip from a burnt end article I wrote years ago.

After slicing, pit bosses would have a lot of trimmings that were not actually serving grade. These could be the first cuts on the thin end of the flat or some of the fattier cuts from the point. All these pieces were saved and sometime during the week they were re-seasoned and cooked until very tender and served as a “Burnt Ends Special”. They are also known as tips, burnt tips and brownies. Burnt ends became so popular, many joints starting saving all their points for burnt ends and some places started cooking extra briskets specifically for this dish. They are in such high demand around Kansas City and in Texas; many places have them as a daily item on the menu. Depending on locale, burnt ends can be served up dry with sauce on the table or they can be reduced in sauce before serving.



This is the way I remember burnt ends when I was a little boy in Texas in the 60's and 70's, so I cook them like this from time to time.

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Old 08-19-2019, 02:27 PM   #3
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Oh, I was (and maybe still am) confused about the deckle. In Aaron Franklin's video he refers to the deckle as a hunk of fat. I mistakenly thought he was referring to the hunk of meat he grabs and cuts off after removing the fat that he calls the deckle. Skip to 3:05 in the video below. He cuts off the "deckle" and then says the hunk of meat he trims is what was originally KC burnt ends. Maybe he just means the deckle area...

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VmTzdMHu5KU
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Old 08-19-2019, 02:46 PM   #4
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Maybe this will help.



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Old 08-19-2019, 02:49 PM   #5
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I think you are just being anal.
Cooking is an adventure. And if it turns out bad, eat it anyway to hide the evidence.
Then do it better next time.
When you find what you like, try it on Family and Friends. If they seem to like it then you are on the right path.

Beef is good. But it is NOT the end all, be all, to Bar-B-Que.
Unless you want to be a snob, make a show, or somebody else (the producer) is buying it.

Burnt ends using Pork Belly is absolutely wonderful. I make it and the crock pot I take it in gets scraped clean at parties.

So be more open minded. And remember those celebrities are entertainers. What you see is not necessarily what they actually cooked. Far from it.
What you see is what was made for the show.
If they were dirty, sweaty, and had a beer in their hand, they'd be believable.

When was the last time you Bar-B-Qued with a bow tie on your neck?
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Old 08-19-2019, 02:54 PM   #6
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you are right. burnt ends went from being actual burnt ends to beind carmelized deckle cubes on the competition circuit in the never ending searce for tenderness (crispy not being tender). i do not consider these to be real burnt ends although i do not dislike or discredit them as being an individual barbeque item in competition or retail. the problem i have is still calling them burnt ends when they are something that has evolved from burnt ends, and are an item that is painstakingly prevented from being burnt. you are right about them coming from the flat originally first also.
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Old 08-19-2019, 02:59 PM   #7
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I have to wonder what they called it when folks cooked what the caught and killed?
Brontosaurus burnt ends? Stegosaurus steaks?

I called it Game Meat, Deer or Antelope.
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Old 08-19-2019, 04:10 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rookiedad View Post
you are right. burnt ends went from being actual burnt ends to beind carmelized deckle cubes on the competition circuit in the never ending searce for tenderness (crispy not being tender). i do not consider these to be real burnt ends although i do not dislike or discredit them as being an individual barbeque item in competition or retail. the problem i have is still calling them burnt ends when they are something that has evolved from burnt ends, and are an item that is painstakingly prevented from being burnt. you are right about them coming from the flat originally first also.
This kind of sums up what I was getting at. I don't get why these other things are called burnt ends. They seem to have nothing in common. I just made "pork belly burnt ends" this weekend but I felt the name was strange. That's what prompted me to do some research.
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Old 08-19-2019, 04:18 PM   #9
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Personally I don't care where the "Burnt End" comes from however IMO they should be sourced from fatty meat to stand up to the extra cooking needed to achieve the caramelization, tenderness and succulent texture Burnt Ends are known for.
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Old 08-22-2019, 03:17 PM   #10
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hey Bill,
that is exactly what we were getting at. real burnt ends are npt that. not tender, not succulent, maybe carmelized, but not in the way that i think you are describing. definately worth a try though!
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