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View Full Version : Help! St. Louis' too Dark?


Lemon Lime
04-07-2008, 06:46 PM
I've been practicing every week for the past month for our upcoming first comp and while the ribs are receiving high marks from the friends and family, I'm not happy with the appearance. They come out too dark and that's usually before I wrap them.

I know it's hard to just offer one solution to my problem but I'll summarize what I'm doing briefly:

I'm using a common rub recipe. I'm using the 3-2-1 method on a Brinkmann Smokemaster. Using soaked wood chunks of apple and pecan with the charcoal. In the beginning I add about 4-5 chunks then one at a time as the smoking goes on. Temp is running about 240 -250 consistently. After unwrapping I'm mopping with a combination of apple juice, teriyaki sauce, cider vinegar, olive oil, wine for the last hour. I am not adding BBQ sauce.

Am I too paranoid? Any suggestions?

LL

Solidkick
04-07-2008, 06:49 PM
I'd say the teriyaki sauce may be the culprit.......

Without seeing before wrapping and after wrapping pics would one know for sure.
Can you get us pics?

rookiedad
04-07-2008, 06:54 PM
i would try cooking one with no rub to see how that comes out, then vary the rub recipe after that. maybe too much sugar.

Rockaway BeachBQ
04-07-2008, 06:58 PM
Try using dry wood chunks for less smoke.

txschutte
04-07-2008, 06:59 PM
Could be dirty smoke, too. Try your wood chunks without soaking them.

Derrick D
04-07-2008, 07:51 PM
I also say the teriyaki

Westexbbq
04-07-2008, 08:01 PM
My first read through and I too noted the terriyaki, (wonder how many times I misspell that word.)
Just my dos centavos.
Also I use dry, seasoned wood only as well.

Bigmista
04-07-2008, 08:15 PM
Isn't 3-2-1 too long if you are cooking at 240-250?

fivelombardis
04-07-2008, 09:11 PM
Try using dry wood chunks for less smoke.

BINGO!!!

bbqbull
04-07-2008, 09:15 PM
All the above!

Lemon Lime
04-07-2008, 09:59 PM
Thanks for the ideas but they're too dark after 3, so maybe, Bigmista you might be right.

Lemon Lime
04-07-2008, 10:00 PM
And I like the idea of using dry wood! Does that produce less smoke?

Bbq Bubba
04-07-2008, 10:06 PM
Could be dirty smoke, too. Try your wood chunks without soaking them.

Soaking just delays the eventual smoke.

And I like the idea of using dry wood! Does that produce less smoke?

I also believe your using too much wood.
Your smoke should be thin and blue.....start with a couple of chunks and go from there. :biggrin:

rookiedad
04-07-2008, 10:08 PM
i find less wood equals less smoke and dry wood makes for better cleaner smoke. i really don't see any reason to soak chunks. i always thought folks soaked chips just to give them a little staying power, so they wouldn't just burn up, but a dry chunk is doing what it is supposed to do.

Lemon Lime
04-07-2008, 10:15 PM
Soaking just delays the eventual smoke.



I also believe your using too much wood.
Your smoke should be thin and blue.....start with a couple of chunks and go from there. :biggrin:

Bbq Bubba,

I think you might have it. When I first start their is pretty heavy white smoke pouring out. Thin and blue, huh? Thanks.

Meat Burner
04-07-2008, 10:31 PM
Bbq Bubba,

I think you might have it. When I first start their is pretty heavy white smoke pouring out. Thin and blue, huh? Thanks.
Soaked wood will give heavy white smoke which is not good. We never soak wood...EVER!!! Most of the time it doesn't take much wood to give that great smoke flavor....thin blue smoke it the key. Just my $.02

Ron_L
04-07-2008, 10:34 PM
Don't put the food into the cooker until the heavy white smoke clears. Besides the things the guys have suggested above, try foiling the ribs when they are the color that you want instead of going by time.

butts
04-07-2008, 10:46 PM
Just my thoughts...

Try dry wood and also cut the wood by half...can the teriyaki...and keep in mind that olive oil burns at low temperatures. And as mentioned before, those temps are too high for the 3-2-1 method.

Lemon Lime
04-14-2008, 06:33 PM
Just finished doing some St. Louis's this weekend using a bunch of your suggestions this weekend, thin and blue, cut the wood in half, dry wood, no white smoke, no teriyaki, etc., etc. Much, much better. Thanks to all for the advice!!!

Spydermike72
04-14-2008, 08:30 PM
What kind of wine were you using ?? That may have been part of the issue as well...

CMALANGA
04-14-2008, 09:16 PM
I don't think it's apple and pecan giving it a dark color. The bigger culprits are the terriyaki and the wine. When the sugars cure during cooking they darken down.