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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 08-26-2010, 09:00 AM   #1
smoked out
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Default Rookie Compettition question

Ive been sucked into a competition this year and am trying to get an idea on the whole thing. One sticking point I come to is my timeline. We will arrive on saturday AM and We submit our meats on sunday starting around noon. My question is do people normally cook everything on sat am and refridgerate and reheat to submit or do they cook the evening before and time it to be ready for the deadline. If you are cooking and cooling/reheating, what is the preferred method Ive considered a mini fridge or dry ice and cooler. what other methods do people use? I think it would be better to not have to reheat but then we are putting things to the fire in the middle of the night. any advice would help, I am going into this as a learning experience but am trying to be as prepared as possible.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 09:08 AM   #2
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I am in the same boat but I have to turn in the pork shoulder or butt by 2pm the same day. So anyone have suggestions such as suggestions for things to take etc? I normally put the shoulder on at 9 pm at nite and take it off the next am. What is the rule of thumb for hours per pound at 230 degrees. I was hoping to find a chart and would also measure the temp of the meat.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 09:40 AM   #3
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Where and when is the contest? There are a few contests this weekend around town, Bonner Springs & Paola. I would recommend you go to one of these and ask questions. I can tell you a fellow brethren, Will with Sticks & Chicks, will be in Bonner.

We don't cook, cool down, reheat. We cook the big meats overnight and then start ribs early in the morning and then chicken a little later. This is with turn-ins starting at noon. Once the big meats are done we put them into a cambro to hold the temp until we are ready to turn them in.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 09:59 AM   #4
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What I do is find my target turn-in time and then work backwards from there.

So, for example, if my brisket is due at 1:30PM, I begin with the ending. I want about 15 minutes to slice and box up my presentation. That puts me back to 1:15PM

Then, I normally hold the brisket in a newspaper packed cooler (same idea as Kim's cambro, basically) to let the liquids reintegrate. I hold it there for two hours. That puts us back to about 11:15AM

Then, I cook a 14 pound brisket for . . . about 12 hours or so at 225F. So that means that I will - roughly - be putting my brisket on to cook at approximately 11:15PM

I need about 30 minutes for my cooker to come up to temp and stabilize . . . and I need about 15 minutes before that for my charcoal briquettes to start up completely. So THAT means I am starting my chimney at about 10:30PM

I record all that data in a spreadsheet with time going forward in the rows. So row A is the earliest time and move forward to Z for the latest time.

Then I do the same thing for pork shoulder, ribs and chicken, working each back from my turn-in goal.

Then, you can also add in things like . . . you want the brisket to season for at least four hours before you begin cooking it - that puts you back to 6:30PM to finish applying your rub and injection. Doing that takes about 20 minutes, so you need to be finished trimming your brisket by about 6:00PM Trimming takes me about an hour, so the very LATEST that I want to start trimming brisket is 5:00PM And that means I need to have had my meat inspected by about 4:45PM at the latest.

When I am finished, I have a complete cooking schedule of what needs to happen when - then I print out multiple copies - give one to my wife, keep one in the car - and I keep referring to them constantly to keep me on track.

It really helps me a lot - you may find something else helps you more.

I hope this helps! Have fun!
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Unread 08-26-2010, 10:23 AM   #5
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^^^ what they said. No cool & reheat. Factor in enough cook time for the meat and
an hour or two of holding. That way if it's not cooking as fast as you'd like you have
a built-in extra cook time. Same if it cooks too fast, you just store it a little longer in
the cambro/cooler. You come up with a time-line by working backwards from turn-in.
If you dont have a set-it-and-forget-it cooker, you'll want to schedule some nap time
for the team if you can (shifts).

Bama, which competition? We go with about an hour and a quarter per pound. We
cook pretty much dead on 250, but it can fluctuate up to close to 260 sometimes, so
we end up pulling 9lb butts around that 10th hour, give or take. That's with another
couple of hours in the holding, so it's still cooking a little.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 10:24 AM   #6
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^^^^thats it in a nutshell, exactly.
unless you only have 1 smaller cooker or change temps for different meats. then thats the nutshell, but not the nut.
cuz now you're also factoring in amount of smoke and foiling time, plus cooker space and pulling meats out to load others in.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 10:34 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QansasjayhawQ View Post
I record all that data in a spreadsheet with time going forward in the rows. So row A is the earliest time and move forward to Z for the latest time.
Always take notes! We have a beater laptop we use. We've recorded every cook we've done in the last 3 years. It's amazing how much you can learn, just by going over your notes!

We will also be @ Bonner this weekend.
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Unread 08-26-2010, 12:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by QansasjayhawQ View Post
What I do is find my target turn-in time and then work backwards from there.

So, for example, if my brisket is due at 1:30PM, I begin with the ending. I want about 15 minutes to slice and box up my presentation. That puts me back to 1:15PM

Then, I normally hold the brisket in a newspaper packed cooler (same idea as Kim's cambro, basically) to let the liquids reintegrate. I hold it there for two hours. That puts us back to about 11:15AM

Then, I cook a 14 pound brisket for . . . about 12 hours or so at 225F. So that means that I will - roughly - be putting my brisket on to cook at approximately 11:15PM

I need about 30 minutes for my cooker to come up to temp and stabilize . . . and I need about 15 minutes before that for my charcoal briquettes to start up completely. So THAT means I am starting my chimney at about 10:30PM

I record all that data in a spreadsheet with time going forward in the rows. So row A is the earliest time and move forward to Z for the latest time.

Then I do the same thing for pork shoulder, ribs and chicken, working each back from my turn-in goal.

Then, you can also add in things like . . . you want the brisket to season for at least four hours before you begin cooking it - that puts you back to 6:30PM to finish applying your rub and injection. Doing that takes about 20 minutes, so you need to be finished trimming your brisket by about 6:00PM Trimming takes me about an hour, so the very LATEST that I want to start trimming brisket is 5:00PM And that means I need to have had my meat inspected by about 4:45PM at the latest.

When I am finished, I have a complete cooking schedule of what needs to happen when - then I print out multiple copies - give one to my wife, keep one in the car - and I keep referring to them constantly to keep me on track.

It really helps me a lot - you may find something else helps you more.

I hope this helps! Have fun!
I completely agree with this method, as well as most of the well organized competitors.
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