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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 08-24-2012, 06:38 PM   #1
Teamfour
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Default Why cook so much meat?

Let me preface this by saying that I am not trying to be a smart a$$. But...

If I only have to put six ribs in a box, or 6-8 slices of brisket, why would I cook two packers and four slabs?

If I cook a bunch of meat and maybe stagger the times I pull it off, doesn't it stand to reason that I am increasing my chance of lucking out somewhere along the line with decent Q? I know I still need to know the basics and still won't beat the pros via luck.

Wouldn't a true champion be able to cook one slab and either get it right or not?

OK, I have my kevlar on.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 06:42 PM   #2
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every piece of meat is different, however marginal.

those small variances can mean the difference between GC and MOTP.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 06:48 PM   #3
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Meat is a tremendously variable product. From one steer to the next, from one hog to the next, you don't *really* know what you've got until it's on the cutting board.

A true champion will cook a particular piece of meat to its greatest potential, but that's not to say some other guy with a better brisket/slab/whatever couldn't luck out and do better that day -- that's why you sometimes see choice briskets beat wagyus.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 06:50 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Teamfour View Post
Let me preface this by saying that I am not trying to be a smart a$$. But...

If I only have to put six ribs in a box, or 6-8 slices of brisket, why would I cook two packers and four slabs?

If I cook a bunch of meat and maybe stagger the times I pull it off, doesn't it stand to reason that I am increasing my chance of lucking out somewhere along the line with decent Q? I know I still need to know the basics and still won't beat the pros via luck.

Wouldn't a true champion be able to cook one slab and either get it right or not?

OK, I have my kevlar on.
WHAT!?!? How could you ask a question like that???



Sorry, I had to make it worth putting on the Kevlar suit :)

As Boogiesnap said, every piece of meat is unique, and I want the best shot at putting the perfect meat into the box. I typically cook 24 thighs, 4 ranks of ribs, two butts (at least 9 lbs) and two briskets (at least 12 lbs.) that gives me a good variety to pick from.

There is a great variation in thighs, so I want as many as possible to pick from. I choose ribs that are close, but not exactly the same size so one may be more done than another, but usually at least two are where I want them.

For the butts, I could probably get by with one since they almost always taste the same, but I still cook two.

For brisket, they almost always taste different, so I can choose whichever one tastes best.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 06:59 PM   #5
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I don't know, but let's say you cook one rack of ribs. And it falls on the ground. You think you've got any chance of getting all those foreign objects off of it so you don't get DQ'd? Or since you invested a chitload of time and money, is it really worth saving that extra $24 by not throwing those other 2 racks of ribs on when your only rack is laying in the dirt?

I cook 2 butts and 2 packers because invariably 1 of the 2 is better than the other and unless you're a "meat whisperer" you wouldn't know which of the 2 is going to be the best until you cook them.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 07:04 PM   #6
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Great answers! I wasn't trying to refute the practice, just trying to learn. I did wonder if one could be skilled enough to be a meat-whisperer. Also, I could cook 100 thighs and be DAL.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 07:09 PM   #7
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For every competition we cook 2 briskets, two butts, 6 ribs, and 16 thighs...if we don't show up for work Monday am with BBQ for our co-workers we get the cold shoulder...lol!

But seriously now...to answer your question...we increase our odds of producing a good, better, or best product by cooking more meats to choose from. We have (on several occasions) been very glad that we did...
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Unread 08-24-2012, 07:36 PM   #8
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I struggle with this too. This is our first year competing and competition BBQ is really expensive. We cook what we need for competition. We don't cook extra brisket or butts. If we cooked twice the meat we would have to limit our competitions. So far it is working for us. If you are getting sponsorship and getting a great deal on your meat, fine, cook 2x the meat. It starts to get to the point where even if you win GC or RC you break even.

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Unread 08-24-2012, 08:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
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I don't know, but let's say you cook one rack of ribs. And it falls on the ground. You think you've got any chance of getting all those foreign objects off of it so you don't get DQ'd? Or since you invested a chitload of time and money, is it really worth saving that extra $24 by not throwing those other 2 racks of ribs on when your only rack is laying in the dirt?

I cook 2 butts and 2 packers because invariably 1 of the 2 is better than the other and unless you're a "meat whisperer" you wouldn't know which of the 2 is going to be the best until you cook them.
i agree, but if you think a rack of comp ribs cost 12 bucks...

it all nickel and dimes you to death.
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Unread 08-24-2012, 08:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NRA4Life View Post
I don't know, but let's say you cook one rack of ribs. And it falls on the ground. You think you've got any chance of getting all those foreign objects off of it so you don't get DQ'd? Or since you invested a chitload of time and money, is it really worth saving that extra $24 by not throwing those other 2 racks of ribs on when your only rack is laying in the dirt?

I cook 2 butts and 2 packers because invariably 1 of the 2 is better than the other and unless you're a "meat whisperer" you wouldn't know which of the 2 is going to be the best until you cook them.

Trust me....

It's worse when you're pal / teammate "unintentionally" drops the entire rack of perfectly cooked, glazed chicken parts falls on the ground just before placing in boxes ..

You'd think 18-24 pcs would be safe...

safe enough to prevent a DQ, but not safe enough to place 68th of 72 (when everyhing else was Top 5 - 10)

Ask Sledneck why I retired

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Unread 08-24-2012, 08:56 PM   #11
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we presale all of are leftovers. ribs 1 bad cut get a tear we will change racks
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Unread 08-24-2012, 09:11 PM   #12
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Selection..Selection..Selection.

I cooked four racks of ribs once. Each rack seasoned the same way. Each had a different tenderness and taste.

Brisket, had one too tender, one too tough, etc.

I rather be safe. As everyone else said, sell the leftovers, feed family & friends, freeze it. (I have way to much left over BBQ in the freezer)
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Unread 08-24-2012, 11:57 PM   #13
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We cook two Butts because certain parts are the perfect doneness at different temps. We do four racks of ribs because we have the room and it gives us the big get margin for getting 6-8 perfect ribs. Chicken is cheap so we do 20 trimmed thighs, 10 un-trimmed and a dozen drums just for fun.
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Unread 08-25-2012, 07:15 AM   #14
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Quote:
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i agree, but if you think a rack of comp ribs cost 12 bucks...
I'm normally paying around $36 for a 3 pack of ribs that I trim to St. Louis, I normally buy 2 packs to get 3 good racks, but I sell the extras for what I paid to my buddies that want to cook them and my 3 racks normally cost around $12 each.
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Unread 08-25-2012, 09:01 AM   #15
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+1 what they've all said above. Selection, and frankly disaster recovery. I personally
witnessed Bub-Ba-Q trip with this chicken box and dump the entire contents in the gravel & sand as we were heading to turn-in (actually it was his wife carrying the box who tripped). Thankfully for him he'd cooked plenty, he went back to his table, wiped out the box, put 9 pieces of chicken in now without garnish, placed 2nd in chicken that day and GC'd.

I smile when I read about how expensive it is to compete and the meat costs... Try MBN sometime. HOLY TAMALE!!! I actually cook a little extra at each competition because I enjoy the leftovers and so do my friends. We stock the fridge and freezers...
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