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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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Old 11-07-2010, 06:15 PM   #1
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Default Trying 8 different rubs

I'm newer to smoking my own BBQ and still searching for the flavor profile I like best. A while back, I posted a thread asking how people experiment. http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/sh...ad.php?t=94004 Some good suggestions there.

Today, I finally got back around to it. To do my experimenting, I picked up 1 lb of ground pork and then divided into eight approximately equal pieces. I balled these up, flattened out, and then put 1/4 tp of rub on each side of the patty. I don't know if this is too much or not enough, but we'll see. I left the rubs on the surface, because I wanted the flavor to pop out. I then left the patties sit in the fridge for about 1:30 while I mulched the leaves in my yard. The patties then went on my UDS chugging along at 230*. They aren't done yet. The plan is to share with my wife and serve with mashed potatoes and corn.

This isn't a shoot out to pick a winner (not possible), and the plan isn't perfect. For example, I think the fine rubs have an advantage over the course rubs. I'm sure there are other things, but it is a start. we'll see how it turns out...

The rubs I'm testing are ones I've had on hand (no particular order):
Lawry's Seasoning Salt - old favorite in our house for meats of all kind. It felt wrong to exclude it.
Yardbird - by Plowboys. A Brethern Fav.
Heffer Dust - by Spicewine
Pig Powder - Lee Ann Whippen's, I picked this up when I visited her new Chicago restaurant.
Bronzeville Rub - from TheSpiceHouse.com
Rasta Joe - My brother gave me a sample. He bought it from a local grocery store in Indiana. Looks like a local product from Plymouth, IN.
Memphis Dust - I made this using a recipe from AmazingRibs.com
Rudimentary Rub - I made this with a recipe from Gary WiViott's, Low & Slow, but the cayenne pepper was cut in 1/2. I've used this several times as I followed his book.

I'll let you know how it turns out later tonight....
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:21 PM   #2
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thats a pretty good idea def interested to see how it comes out!
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:25 PM   #3
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I always use Lawery on pork butts and brisket and use McCormick on ribs
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:27 PM   #4
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Looks like a great plan!
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:31 PM   #5
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Cool experiment.
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Old 11-07-2010, 06:57 PM   #6
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Yardbird is some good Rub! I also love the Pig Powder...I like to put it on chicken salad sandwiches
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Old 11-07-2010, 07:26 PM   #7
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An interesting test. No shortage of flavor here. Standing by for your opinions.
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Old 11-07-2010, 07:29 PM   #8
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Winds blowing west.

I can smell that cooking

I'm on my way over!

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Old 11-07-2010, 07:33 PM   #9
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Are they done yet?
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Old 11-07-2010, 07:51 PM   #10
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Give us your hypothesis as to which one's you THINK you will like most before you give us the conclusion
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:20 PM   #11
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Okay, 1:30 min cook and the results are in. Sort-of.

First, 1/2 tp (1/4tp each side) of rub per 1/8lb of pork was not enough. I thought about frying one up in a pan to test that first, but I was in a hurry. 1/2 tp is almost enough if I were eating a meal, but I was looking for overwhelming flavor to be able to judge them. Next time, I think I'll go for 1/4 mixed in and 1/4 each side for 3/4tp total.

Second, 8 different rubs at one time is too many. I ate about 2/3 a pound of pork, it was enough, but was only about two bites of each rub - not enough to go back and forth. 4 is probably a better limit.

I'm not really sure if the results are valid, because several just weren't strong enough. But, in general both my wife and I liked rubs that had a little spice too them. The Bronzeville Rub and Rasta Joe Rub were definitely the top showers. I think these were the two strongest flavors. Lawry's had a finished strong. My wife exclaimed that she liked it, and then we both got a good kick out of the fact that it was Lawry's. Pig Powder and Heffer Dust just weren't strong enough. Maybe I didn't use as much. I liked the Yardbird, but I swear I was getting a chicken taste - maybe my mind was playing tricks on me. My wife wasn't crazy about it - I think she was getting full. The Memphis Dust was good but a little too sweet to me and something else that I couldn't put my finger on - coarse. The Rudimentary Rub was definitely the bottom. This surprised me me because I've had good results with it. It was strong, boring, flat, and dry. I guess it is called Rudimentary for a reason.

I'm guessing the rubs will react differently to different meats and will blend with different sauces differently.

I'm going to keep doing this from time to time. I want to get my hands on some Simply Marvelous rubs and a few others. But, at some point I'm going to need to use up what I got!
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:25 PM   #12
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Yep, one thing about doing experiments like this is you get really full. You don't have to sample all of them multiple times necessarily, just 2 or 3 times perhaps. For the first two, figure out which is better and then line them up from worst to best. With the next sample compare it to the better of the previous two which should probably still be fresh on your tongue. I always only focused on the ones I liked best which meant jsut comparing to the current best tasting one, and ignorin the other peices you already tried that weren't the best. I didn't want an exact sorted ranking of every piece, as I probably was never going to care about the ones in the lower 90% anyway.
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:33 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mikeTRON View Post
Give us your hypothesis as to which one's you THINK you will like most before you give us the conclusion
I thought I was going to like the Rudimentary Rub and Yardbird the best. Didn't quite work out that way. But, like I've said, I've had some good ribs and pulled pork with the Rudimentary Rub. And, the chicken I did last week with the Yardbird was excellent.

All the results surprised me, for different reasons.

Bronzeville surprised me. I did some ribs with it and wasn't blown away by it. But, I did ribs with three rubs that day and my mouth was on fire from one of them and that threw the results off.

Rasta Joe also surprised me. I didn't know anything about it, hadn't seen it sold at any of the Brethren stores that I've looked at, and just knocked it because it was from Indiana (I grew up in Indiana). I should have known better... I looked up his page a little bit ago and see that he has won quite a few awards and been around a while.

Still laughing about Lawry's. I'm not sure I can bring myself to use something so store bought and commercial as this. Maybe it is good mixed with something.
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Old 11-07-2010, 08:59 PM   #14
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I wonder if the rubs just don't compliment the fatties?

We need to get a group of people together somewhere and do this same test with as many rubs as possible with one meat a month :) spare ribs, brisket, pork butt, baby backs etc etc
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Old 11-08-2010, 06:47 AM   #15
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I use rib tips for my tastings and never more than 4 at a time. Next time do a blind tasting so you won't be influenced. Nothing wrong with the Lawry's. I use it as a chicken and steak rub all the time.
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