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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 05-27-2006, 11:56 AM   #1
Q_Egg
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Default For My Quasi-scientific Brethren ... RUB 'curing times' .....

...... I respect and appreciate individual preferences, but this question is really aimed at any scientific/chemical issues related to applying rubs for varying amounts of time. Perhaps the meat involved plays a major role as well.

For the few, most frequently Q'd meats here on the Forum, what are sound rules to apply for the times between rub application and the start of the cook? When is it highly recommended to apply, wrap, refrigerate (overnight) versus apply, wait short amounts of time and cook?

I did a few unsuccessful searches .... if I missed a key thread or link, please advise.

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Unread 05-27-2006, 12:14 PM   #2
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Don't have any scientific evidence but I have had great results with rubbing right before puttin it on the smoker and rubbing the day before. Marinades and brines penetrate with time. Rubs are surface flavor and time isn't a factor.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 12:18 PM   #3
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Sorry to disagree with my esteemed colleage, BigMista, but I like to leave rubs on as long as possible. The salt and sugar in a rub with time, will interact with the juices of the meats. If possible sitting the meat overnight in the rub really helps the flavor.

Of course I also agree with my esteems colleage BigMista that I've had success with rubbing right before cooking.

Go figure.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 12:27 PM   #4
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Would you agree that the increased flavor that you taste are still surface flavors and while they may be more intense on ribs or even chicken, it wouldn't penetrate briskets or butts?
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Unread 05-27-2006, 12:50 PM   #5
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Default Exactly my dilemma ... I would have thought ....

..... that ribs or chicken might not gain much more than from short-term exposure, but that larger, more dense meats like brisket and butt would gain from overnight exposure.

Sounds like this is still up for discussion ?
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Unread 05-27-2006, 01:26 PM   #6
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I inject think / large meats brisket/butts. I just rub ribs, but let sit overnight, chicken gets brined. I have done both the long time sit, and the rub and on the grates. food tasted good in all cases. I do think this is a preference thing, like mustard/foil/k side left/ k side right.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 01:59 PM   #7
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I inject butts, Brine chicken and just rub briskets and ribs. Usually when I have the time.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 03:00 PM   #8
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I usually let the rub sit on butts as long as possible. I also use a mustard slather on butts. I don't know if that makes too much of a difference, but the butts that I have done thus far using mustard and rub have come out pretty good. I don't know...sometimes I think that you have to be lucky sometimes and things just flat go right! Maybe there is a BBQ god!
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Unread 05-27-2006, 03:34 PM   #9
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I have done a lot of night before and right before rub applications and don't find a significant difference either way. Since there didn't seem to be much of a difference, I save the hassle of rewrapping and just appy rub on the way to the cooker.

As an aside, I don't like rubbing ribs in advance as there's enough salt in most rubs to draw out a good amount of moisture from the ribs and I prefer to leave the moisture in and let the spices penetrate (not that it amounts to much) during the cook.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 03:57 PM   #10
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Default Nice to hear this rib comparison and moisture comment ....

...... If the extra time makes little difference, then it is at least worth my while to mark down ribs as a 'short' rub time item. Incidentally, I had seen one Q site which runs training days, etc., insisting on no more than 2 hours 'rub time' for spare ribs.
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Unread 05-27-2006, 04:09 PM   #11
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tommy, you'll probably find that few others agree with me on that point, but having dumped good amounts of juice off of ribs that I seasoned the night before, i just quit doing it.
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Unread 05-28-2006, 08:35 AM   #12
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I rub while the pit is getting up to temp.
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Unread 05-28-2006, 09:54 AM   #13
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Well my taste senses are finely tuned but I can never really taste a major difference between one that I've rubbed a day or two in advance and one I've done just before I put it on the smoker. I rub early more out of convienience than anything.
As far as the liquid that comes off the meat when rubbed early, I can't really say there's been a noticable difference in whether it came out dry or not either.
Now that I've got my WSM and so far it seems that I've been smoking more I might try a couple of different experiments. Maybe do 2 butts, one rubbed the night before, and one done just before putting it in the smoker.
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Unread 05-28-2006, 10:37 AM   #14
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Default I am very comfortable with the answer(s) to my query .....

......... you men represent a wealth of experience and do not indicate any solid 'scientific' reasons to avoid one method or the other. Based on that, I can be comfortable choosing the rub_pre-cook time that best fits my situation.

Thanks for letting me nail down another key BBQ issue and move forward!
Regards,
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Big Green Egg _ Large _ need high heat
Broilmaster D3 'natural' gasser
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Unread 05-28-2006, 11:19 AM   #15
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As some have eluded too above the salt and sugar do permeate the meat in a limited way as a brine does if the meat is wrapped up in the fridge. I would rather taste the pure flavor of the meat with a rub crust on the exterior though. I think layering flavor makes for great food.
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