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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 04-17-2010, 04:56 PM   #31
Willie's BBQ
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i just use it to get a good sugar rush
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Unread 04-18-2010, 07:42 AM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spode View Post
Can someone help me understand how sugar caramalizes to form bark please? I'm in Australia and there arn't any BBQ restaurants I can learn from , so it's pictures guiding me only!

I use the rib rub in Chris Lilly's book, which is 2 parts sugar to 1 part paprika. I find that the sugar seems to make it all disolve, so you get red coloured ribs but it's not like caked on powder. I have tried recipes that use little or no sugar and it's more like powder but it seems to form a chewy coating when cooked that is a clear layer on the meat.

So either I am not actually understanding what a bark is, never having seen one in the wild, or I am not cooking hot enough for the sugar to caramalize. Could also be I am rubbing it in too much, do you rub a rub or just pat it on or just sprinkle and leave?

Ryan
Caramelize: is the oxidation of sugar, a process used extensively in cooking for the resulting nutty flavor and brown color. As the process occurs, volatile chemicals, Flavors, are released, as I call them, essential oils.


Personally I don't find that sugar helps with the bark. And it appears that you have found that also.


Sugars form naturally in many foods, so take onions for example. To caramelize you heat them so the essential oils start to come out and then the onions start to turn color, ie brown. And a different flavor than if you had just let them sweat.


As many of you have stated, which is one reason I started this thread, there is a lot of overkill out there.



Suggested reading, http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/sh...ad.php?t=82890
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Unread 04-18-2010, 08:37 AM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatioDaddio View Post
My short answer would be, for the same reason that fast food combo meals include a sweet soft drink. Savory, salty and sweet are a great combination, and the marketing folks know it.

My specific reasons are:
  • Balances the salt
  • Balances the acridity and bitterness of the smoke.
  • Bark formation
  • Helps denature (tenderize) the protein
  • Hits one more of the five tastes that the tongue detects (pungent, sweet, sour, bitter, and salty). The more tastebuds you tickle, the better.
John
Couldn't have said it better. Personally, my chicken rub has no salt and if it's just for me, I don't glaze it. If it's for others, especially at a comp, ya gotta sweeten it up.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 03:33 PM   #34
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Unread 04-18-2010, 04:09 PM   #35
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If you want to do a quick, easy and fun experiment to see how much of a difference seasoning makes, get yourself a bowl of chocolate ice cream and sprinkle it with a little kosher salt (NO TABLE SALT!).

If you've never tried it, I think you'll be amazed.

John
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Unread 04-18-2010, 06:41 PM   #36
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PatioDaddio View Post
If you want to do a quick, easy and fun experiment to see how much of a difference seasoning makes, get yourself a bowl of chocolate ice cream and sprinkle it with a little kosher salt (NO TABLE SALT!).

If you've never tried it, I think you'll be amazed.

John
John, I'll try that, sounds crazy at first, but this is how we learn.

BTW I never meant to imply that seasoning does not make a difference. I know it does. Kind of like adding anchovies to a hearty beef dish to bring up the flavor. But don't use too much or you will spoil it. Get my point?

Thanks, I have to go look for some chocolate ice cream.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 09:23 PM   #37
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Well the closest thing to chocolate was Edy's chocolate and peanut butter. I don't usually salt my peanut butter so I figured I was safe.

Got out a small portion and used my Morton Kosher as I might salt a piece of meat. Pleasant surprise.

Now mind you I don't think that I will be salting my ice cream very often if ever again, but a very good experiment. I highly recommend that you all try this. But what would happen if I had just poured on the salt, would the flavor change again? Maybe even taste like, well, SALT?

As I said when I started this thread, why so much sugar.

Saw another thread about salt today, not the one started by J Appledog, Same question, why so much salt in everything?

It appears that some people think bigger is better, or is that size matters? Regardless, more is not always better.

Gosh this is fun.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 09:35 PM   #38
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HeSmellsLikeSmoke View Post
Being from Texas, it's no sugar on beef. I do use a small amount on ribs for a light glaze at the end. No sugar on pork butts though.

I guess it all depends on what you grow up with.
+1, I agree.
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Unread 04-18-2010, 11:30 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chef Jim View Post
Well the closest thing to chocolate was Edy's chocolate and peanut butter. I don't usually salt my peanut butter so I figured I was safe.

Got out a small portion and used my Morton Kosher as I might salt a piece of meat. Pleasant surprise.

Now mind you I don't think that I will be salting my ice cream very often if ever again, but a very good experiment. I highly recommend that you all try this. But what would happen if I had just poured on the salt, would the flavor change again? Maybe even taste like, well, SALT?

As I said when I started this thread, why so much sugar.

Saw another thread about salt today, not the one started by J Appledog, Same question, why so much salt in everything?

It appears that some people think bigger is better, or is that size matters? Regardless, more is not always better.

Gosh this is fun.
I feel ya, Jim. As I say, it's just a fun experiment to show the power of plain ol' salt as a flavor enhancer.

John
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Unread 04-19-2010, 12:04 AM   #40
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I personaly like to find the balance between salty, sweet and spicy... kinda like John & Bigabyte said.

Another expirement for you, take one of the "too salty" rubs that you have and start adding a small amount of sugar to a portion of it until it no longer tastes salty to you. Start adding the spicy element to that until you can notice it and still taste the sweet & salt... amazing how much it changes as you add small amounts of each element.

A personal belief on why so much salt & sugar and IMO - Paprika in rubs is that they are cheap components and make good fillers.

Also, they way a rub is intended to be used and the way that it actually is used can vary tremendously!

For example, on chicken I use a very salty & spicy rub, but, I use it sparingly... if I gave it to you and told you to use it "sparingly" that word means something totaly different to you, and you tell me it was way too salty or spicy, No, more than likely, we didn't use the same amout.
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Unread 04-19-2010, 07:28 AM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KnucklHed BBQ View Post
I personaly like to find the balance between salty, sweet and spicy... kinda like John & Bigabyte said.

Another expirement for you, take one of the "too salty" rubs that you have and start adding a small amount of sugar to a portion of it until it no longer tastes salty to you. Start adding the spicy element to that until you can notice it and still taste the sweet & salt... amazing how much it changes as you add small amounts of each element.

A personal belief on why so much salt & sugar and IMO - Paprika in rubs is that they are cheap components and make good fillers.

Also, they way a rub is intended to be used and the way that it actually is used can vary tremendously!

For example, on chicken I use a very salty & spicy rub, but, I use it sparingly... if I gave it to you and told you to use it "sparingly" that word means something totaly different to you, and you tell me it was way too salty or spicy, No, more than likely, we didn't use the same amout.
Excellent point, I know exactly what you mean!
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Unread 07-24-2010, 03:47 PM   #42
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i don't know why people put sugar on beef. do you put sugar on your steaks?

pork and sweetness go together.
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Unread 07-24-2010, 03:55 PM   #43
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I like the balance of sweet/spicy in my pork rub. I think it does help with bark formation although it's not needed. When I bite into PP I don't get hit with salt, sweet, or spicy, it's a nice mix of all of them. It's personal preference. If everybody liked the same thing the world would be boring, eh?
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Unread 07-25-2010, 08:39 AM   #44
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I am slowly moving away from using sugars in my rubs. I'm working on a 3 stage method whereby the flavors are added to the meat in a very specific way to maximize their effects, provide a very balanced flavor profile and avoid common problems (such as sugars burning if they're cooked too long/hot).

With this new method, the sweetness would be added at the very end in the form of a sweet & spicey sauce that guests would apply themselves. Another savory & less spicey sauce would also be availabe (I like to think of this as 'north eastern style').
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