MMMM.. BRISKET..
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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 06-20-2017, 11:41 AM   #1
WareZdaBeef
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Let me start by saying, yes smoke ring does not make meat taste any better or worse (well maybe to an extent) but it does make it look better, and when you are happy with taste, why not go for looks right?

Anyway, one thing i have noticed when putting on a nice layered rub to build a nice bark, i am sacrificing a nice smoke ring. If i go all natural with a simple S&P I get a great dark red ring but barely any bark. My theory behind this is the rub is preventing the ring from penetrating into the meat the same way leaving a thick fat cap prevents it.

Now i have from time to time came across pics of briskets with that nice dark red ring and what i would consider a thick bark.

So am i wrong in my theory, or is there some "trickery" at play here?

This image is what really caught my eye:

Last edited by WareZdaBeef; 06-20-2017 at 12:17 PM..
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:20 PM   #2
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Does this layered rub you use have salt? I layer my rubs with brisket and my base rub is on the salty side, if not some type of seasoned salt. IMO brisket can take a lot of salt. Salt helps with smoke rings, as does putting the meat on the pit straight from the fridge/cooler. What are you cooking on? Kamados and other cookers that don't use much fuel don't contribute much to a smoke ring.
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:25 PM   #3
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Sprinkle some Morton's tenderquick on first, then layer your rubs......you will have a nice smoke ring then!

...I'm kidding of course, but if you really want that smoke ring, that will guarantee it every time. I also agree with JS-TX, you will see more of it with saltier rubs and especially if you season over night or for a few hours prior to putting on the cooker.
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:39 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Cat797 View Post
Sprinkle some Morton's tenderquick on first, then layer your rubs......you will have a nice smoke ring then!

...I'm kidding of course, but if you really want that smoke ring, that will guarantee it every time. I also agree with JS-TX, you will see more of it with saltier rubs and especially if you season over night or for a few hours prior to putting on the cooker.
Ive tried the MTQ "trickery" a long time ago and i will point out that not only does it affect taste (not in a good way) it also does not produce a nice dark red ring (it always turned pink)

Quote:
Originally Posted by JS-TX View Post
Does this layered rub you use have salt? I layer my rubs with brisket and my base rub is on the salty side, if not some type of seasoned salt. IMO brisket can take a lot of salt. Salt helps with smoke rings, as does putting the meat on the pit straight from the fridge/cooler. What are you cooking on? Kamados and other cookers that don't use much fuel don't contribute much to a smoke ring.
Usually my first layer is salt and coarse pepper. Its enough to borderline being too salty for most. I let that sort of rest for a few hours in the fridge, then i will add other layers of spices without salt. This allows me to build flavors without adding more salt. After a few hours and a few layers it goes in the fridge overnight.

As far as cooking, i use KBB with wood chunks. I start the meat right out of the fridge then into the smoker at a low temp like 200F for two hours then i raise the temp up to 225-250F until probe tender.

I have repeated this method dozens of times and its always the same results, nice bark=not so nice ring, nice ring= not so nice bark.
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:41 PM   #5
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My bark is never very thick or set (I wrap in foil usually). I get a good pink ring every time. Did not know there was a connection between bark and smoke ring. I'm interested in reading the answers.
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nuco59 View Post
My bark is never very thick or set (I wrap in foil usually). I get a good pink ring every time. Did not know there was a connection between bark and smoke ring. I'm interested in reading the answers.
Well, i am not sure there is a connection. I am just tired of theorizing if there is. I want answers damnit!

Btw, this was just a recent chuck i did that as an example of great ring, not so great bark.


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Old 06-20-2017, 12:49 PM   #7
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Here is a photo of a brisket I did over Memorial Day.
No rub. Just a S&P based seasoning. I consider this a decent bark and smoke ring.

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Old 06-20-2017, 12:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WareZdaBeef View Post

As far as cooking, i use KBB with wood chunks. I start the meat right out of the fridge then into the smoker at a low temp like 200F for two hours then i raise the temp up to 225-250F until probe tender.
That isn't very hot, I don't think you are getting enough combustion. Have you tried going 225* or hotter right from the start?
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Old 06-20-2017, 12:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SirPorkaLot View Post
Here is a photo of a brisket I did over Memorial Day.
No rub. Just a S&P based seasoning. I consider this a decent bark and smoke ring.
Its hard to tell with it already slice and close up shot. What did it look like whole?
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:00 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by JS-TX View Post
That isn't very hot, I don't think you are getting enough combustion. Have you tried going 225* or hotter right from the start?
I always got a better ring starting off low. When starting off hot it reaches 140F faster and from my own tests and many others tests from online searches, its seems to suggest the longer the meat stays below 140F w/smoke, the better the ring.

Remember, the ring isnt the issue, getting both ring and bark is. And i dont have an issue with getting either, its getting them both at the same time.
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:07 PM   #11
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I'm not aware of any direct connection between bark and smoke ring. The best explanation of a smoke ring that I've seen is by Meathead on Amazing Ribs.
http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_tech...moke_ring.html
But, there may be some indirect connection. Smoker type, cooking temp, mopping/basting/spritzing, wrapping, etc. will affect the smoke ring and bark in different ways. Maybe there's something else you're doing different beyond the layered rub vs. S&P? If not, maybe we can all learn something here.
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:12 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by JWACKS View Post
I'm not aware of any direct connection between bark and smoke ring. The best explanation of a smoke ring that I've seen is by Meathead on Amazing Ribs.
http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_tech...moke_ring.html
But, there may be some indirect connection. Smoker type, cooking temp, mopping/basting/spritzing, wrapping, etc. will affect the smoke ring and bark in different ways. Maybe there's something else you're doing different beyond the layered rub vs. S&P? If not, maybe we can all learn something here.
In my opinion, most mopping is done at later stages in the cook where most likely the ring has already formed for the most part. I personally dont spritz,mop..ect..ect but now thinking about it, maybe mopping is contributing to a thicker bark when initially a thin rub is used?
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Old 06-20-2017, 01:14 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WareZdaBeef View Post
Its hard to tell with it already slice and close up shot. What did it look like whole?
As it was being wrapped in BP

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Old 06-20-2017, 01:45 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WareZdaBeef View Post
I always got a better ring starting off low. When starting off hot it reaches 140F faster and from my own tests and many others tests from online searches, its seems to suggest the longer the meat stays below 140F w/smoke, the better the ring.

Remember, the ring isnt the issue, getting both ring and bark is. And i dont have an issue with getting either, its getting them both at the same time.
You may need some more seasoning, in this case you have enough salt, so maybe turbinado sugar. That is true with the smoke ring being more prevalent when starting slow but combustion is also important, cooking hotter helps with the malliard reaction and getting more bark. Any pics of the brisket before it goes on the pit?
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Old 06-20-2017, 02:22 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by JS-TX View Post
You may need some more seasoning, in this case you have enough salt, so maybe turbinado sugar. That is true with the smoke ring being more prevalent when starting slow but combustion is also important, cooking hotter helps with the malliard reaction and getting more bark. Any pics of the brisket before it goes on the pit?
I don't. Atleast none of anything recent. I tend to forget to take pics at 6am in the morning when im rushing half asleep to get everything going. Plus, when im not happy with looks i tend not to care to take pics. I will take some pics before next weekends cook if this thread isn't buried by then.

btw, I have used tubinado in layered rubs, I suppose next time i will try a more coarse rub. I am thinking i may be adding too much finer spices that are creating a barrier that smoke can't get through. (well nitrate gases or w/e)

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