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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 04-01-2012, 10:13 AM   #1
Q-Dat
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Default OK Lets Discuss Pork.........And Sauce...

I am having some trouble getting into the top 15 in pork. I understand that you never know who is going to taste it, and it is all subjective, but this weekend I followed the Pickled Pig's pork method and was very careful to do everything exactly the way the tutorial reads.

I was feeling pretty good about it until I got to the part where the pieces of pulled are dipped in a heated 50/50 mixture of Blues Hog Original, and Tennessee Red.

I ate a couple of these chunks, and found what I was afraid of. All I could taste was the sauce. The meat could have been chicken, pork, or beef, and I would not have been able to tell the difference.

I like my pork with little or no sauce, so my tendency for turnins is to go light on the sauce. Since my pork scores have not been good at all, I decided to go ahead and turn it in sauced like the Pickled Pig says. My scores did improve, but just enough to get me into the middle of the pack.

I'm not saying that the sauce held me back, I'm just curious how the crowd here feels on the subject of pork turnins and sauce?
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Unread 04-01-2012, 11:27 AM   #2
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I always go very light on sauce in all my turn ins, be tuned in to local wants of the judges, if you made good que dont be afraid of little or no sauce...just want enough to be sure of moisture content and flavor enhancment..
I do coat one but with sauce then set it for an hour or less to get a butt with sauced bark and one with its own bark of nice crusted rub..
Ribs are the only turn in that gets a layer of different sauces
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Unread 04-01-2012, 02:42 PM   #3
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I go very heavy on pork sauce. BHO and TR are TWO of the ingredients in the sauce.

I think why makes or breaks it is what You add to them.

A 4th and 5th in 2 KCBS contests since I've imlemeted said sauce.
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Unread 04-01-2012, 06:59 PM   #4
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We sauce lightly with a thin wash that is a mixture of the au jus and our JMS original sauce. While Blues Hog is a fine product, I agree that it's a very strong and distinctive flavor that usually covers up any other flavors you have brought to the party.

As judge, I most enjoy it when a cook offers me his or her personal version of what they think barbecue should be. I would encourage you to explore your own vision and attempt to lead the pack rather than following it.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 08:41 AM   #5
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I prefer comps where the sauce can be presented on the side; hopefully multiple sauces. That gives judges choices of which sauce they prefer and at what amount compliments the meat without covering it. That's my basic opinion, but that wasn't what you were asking. For those that dont allow it on the side, as both a judge and competitor I prefer it without sauce. Having said that, I've been at many tables where the pork came in un-sauced and it needed sauce badly because it was bland and dry (MANY). IF your Q is very tender and moist and flavorful without sauce, I suggest trying that a little longer. Then, if you must sauce it, do it with sauce that's really been thinned. In your example above, perhaps thinning the sauce greatly with water and au jus. Like Gavin said above, "with a thin wash".

I actually use both BH Orig and BH Tenn Red in my pork competition sauce, but it's thinned and it's cut with other things...
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Unread 04-02-2012, 10:15 AM   #6
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Do you brine or inject your pork? I add flavor by injecting my pork. The best pork I find has a light coating of sauce with a good flavor (including smoke and bark) of the meat. As a judge, I've found that many cooks over-sauce their entries. You need to find a balance between the amount of sauce and flavor of the meat. In Slidell this past weekend, I judged a pork entry that had a very strong brine flavor. In fact, the brine flavor stayed with me to the point I had to eat several crackers and drink plenty of eater to minimize the taste. I am not a fan of Blues Hog down here in Louisiana. I think some of the more local sauces with a bit more spice seem to do better.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 02:32 PM   #7
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Sauce your pork only to add moisture and to ENHANCE the flavor of the pork. As a judge it burns my butt to put a piece of pork in my mouth and NOT be able to taste any pork at all! We (CBJs) are to judge the meat as presented by the cook, but you've got to remember, this is a meat contest and NOT a sauce contest.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 04:20 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukenight View Post
Do you brine or inject your pork? I add flavor by injecting my pork. The best pork I find has a light coating of sauce with a good flavor (including smoke and bark) of the meat. As a judge, I've found that many cooks over-sauce their entries. You need to find a balance between the amount of sauce and flavor of the meat. In Slidell this past weekend, I judged a pork entry that had a very strong brine flavor. In fact, the brine flavor stayed with me to the point I had to eat several crackers and drink plenty of eater to minimize the taste. I am not a fan of Blues Hog down here in Louisiana. I think some of the more local sauces with a bit more spice seem to do better.
Confused about a couple of things here....

How do you know, as a judge, that the pork your referring to above was brined?

What exactly made you think it was a brine, which by definition is bascially salt water? Yes, I know other folks do / add other things, but what makes you decide the pork tasted like the brine v the rub v the sauce?

Could have been an injection?

And send me the link for these local sauces with more spice than BH Red, so I can use them when cooking at home.

@Qdat..many threads here on meat v sauce contest, what I would tell you is..sauce is the boss.

YMMV
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Unread 04-02-2012, 04:52 PM   #9
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Lighten the sauce by cutting butter and water/apple juice. Blues hog is a very thick sauce, but most people love the taste. With pork, I just try to lighten it up so the pork is still the dominating flavor.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 05:59 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nukenight View Post
Do you brine or inject your pork? I add flavor by injecting my pork. The best pork I find has a light coating of sauce with a good flavor (including smoke and bark) of the meat. As a judge, I've found that many cooks over-sauce their entries. You need to find a balance between the amount of sauce and flavor of the meat. In Slidell this past weekend, I judged a pork entry that had a very strong brine flavor. In fact, the brine flavor stayed with me to the point I had to eat several crackers and drink plenty of eater to minimize the taste. I am not a fan of Blues Hog down here in Louisiana. I think some of the more local sauces with a bit more spice seem to do better.
I do inject, and honestly I thought the pork tasted great before it got sauced, but I had set out to follow a recipe, and stuck with it, because in the past we had all unanimously thought the same thing, that the pork stood on its own.

From now on, I am turning in pork MY way! If I'm not gonna place, then its at least gonna be with a product that I believe in!
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Unread 04-02-2012, 06:12 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Q-Dat View Post
I do inject, and honestly I thought the pork tasted great before it got sauced, but I had set out to follow a recipe, and stuck with it, because in the past we had all unanimously thought the same thing, that the pork stood on its own.

From now on, I am turning in pork MY way! If I'm not gonna place, then its at least gonna be with a product that I believe in!
this is how you will learn, for pork sauce will have little to add when it is good, however think about giving the judges a choice, some nice sections with no sauce and some with!
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Unread 04-02-2012, 07:25 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Q-Dat View Post
I do inject, and honestly I thought the pork tasted great before it got sauced, but I had set out to follow a recipe, and stuck with it, because in the past we had all unanimously thought the same thing, that the pork stood on its own.

From now on, I am turning in pork MY way! If I'm not gonna place, then its at least gonna be with a product that I believe in!
you're not gonna place. or show.

sauce the farkin thing for the judges. un-sauce at home for principle.

develop a sauce that in your mind compliments the bbq.

*rant on* i'm getting a little tired of the "it's a meat contest" conjecture.

it is not.

it is a BBQ contest, and with that, can and will include sauce.

a meat contest would have very different criteria...kosher salt, fresh cracked black pepper and nothing else seasoning the meat. BBQ is different.

see steak vs. pulled pork bbq.

so please, sauce your competition BBQ. at least a little bit.

*rant off*

flame at will fellas....proof is in aaallllll in the pudding.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 07:39 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Q-Dat View Post
I do inject, and honestly I thought the pork tasted great before it got sauced, but I had set out to follow a recipe, and stuck with it, because in the past we had all unanimously thought the same thing, that the pork stood on its own.

From now on, I am turning in pork MY way! If I'm not gonna place, then its at least gonna be with a product that I believe in!
I heard saying once..cooks follow a recipe, chefs create their own.

Me, I'm a cook. Some recipes are mine, some I shigged or learned online, some I've tweaked to my liking.

But if you taste something as you said above and you thought it was Sh*t hot, and you then tasted it with the recipes sauce and did not, then you should do as you say above and do it your way! cook the best product you can on that day that you feel good about and sling it in the box, thats all we / you can do.

And Boogie's rant is not far off the mark for this very expensive hobby we participate in.... at least in my opinion.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 07:42 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boogiesnap View Post
you're not gonna place. or show.

sauce the farkin thing for the judges. un-sauce at home for principle.

develop a sauce that in your mind compliments the bbq.

*rant on* i'm getting a little tired of the "it's a meat contest" conjecture.

it is not.

it is a BBQ contest, and with that, can and will include sauce.

a meat contest would have very different criteria...kosher salt, fresh cracked black pepper and nothing else seasoning the meat. BBQ is different.

see steak vs. pulled pork bbq.

so please, sauce your competition BBQ. at least a little bit.

*rant off*

flame at will fellas....proof is in aaallllll in the pudding.
Oh I'm still gonna sauce it, I just refuse to turn in anything like what I just did Saturday. I took delicious tender flavorful pork and hid it under Blues Hog. I have a sauce that I have been talked out of using in the past, but not again.

Its about time that some other cat skinning methods were employed.
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Unread 04-02-2012, 07:45 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RangerJ View Post
I heard saying once..cooks follow a recipe, chefs create their own.

Me, I'm a cook. Some recipes are mine, some I shigged or learned online, some I've tweaked to my liking.

But if you taste something as you said above and you thought it was Sh*t hot, and you then tasted it with the recipes sauce and did not, then you should do as you say above and do it your way! cook the best product you can on that day that you feel good about and sling it in the box, thats all we / you can do.

And Boogie's rant is not far off the mark for this very expensive hobby we participate in.... at least in my opinion.
i'm on board with that.

but sauce it anyway.
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