Author Topic: goEMAW.com bbq, smoking, grilling, etc. thread!  (Read 188184 times)

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Offline nicname

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goEMAW.com bbq, smoking, grilling, etc. thread!
« on: August 15, 2012, 01:34:29 AM »
I've decided to embark on what, for me, are uncharted waters.  I grill a lot.  Steaks, chicken, burgers, sausage, fish, veggies, etc. all the basic stuff.  I've recently wanted to try to expand my horizon into the realm of smoking and figured a slab or two of ribs would be a good way to get my feet wet. 

I'll be using a Weber performer, which is basically just a 22.5 inch kettle attached to a table with some fancy gadgets thrown in for good measure.  I've decided to make everything from scratch, and while pricier than going store-bought, seems more fun and more in the spirit of good bbq.

I started by soaking the ribs in some apple cider for about 2 hours, rotating the ribs as to submerge each portion in the cider for a good amount of time.  While that was going on I smoked some salt (for the rub) and made the bbq sauce. I won't cook them until tomorrow.

Both my rub and my sauce are courtesy of Steven Raichlen -- BBQ guru who can be seen all the time on PBS.

The rub consists of

2/3 c - light brown sugar
2/3 c - sugar
1/2 c - paprika
1/4 c - seasoned salt (I used lawry's)
1/4 c - smoked salt (I smoked my own kosher salt using applewood chips which I will also use to smoke the meat)
1/4 c - onion salt
1/4 c - celery salt
2 T    - fresh ground black pepper
2 T    - chili chowder
2 t    - mustard chowder
1 t    - poultry seasoning
1 t    - ground ginger
1/2 t - cayenne pepper

I followed this recipe pretty much to a T outside of eyeballing a couple of the ingredients.

For the sauce I went with an apple based sauce which Raichlen either copied or cloned from B.B.'s Lawnside in KC.  The recipe is as follows.

1 14 oz. bottle of Ketchup
1 c - apple cider (I couldn't find any cider so I used "Simply Apple" apple juice and stirred in some of a cider drink packet to taste)
2 T - worcestershire sauce
1 T - Molasses
1 T - Cider vinegar
1 T - Soy Sauce
1/2 t - Liquid smoke
1 1/2 T - Dark Brown Sugar
1 t - Sugar
1 t - cayenne pepper (I actually used probably 1.5 to 2 t as the recipe didn't have enough kick for my taste)
1/2 t - fresh ground black pepper
1/2 t - celery seed
1/2 t - ground cinnamon
1/8 t - ground cloves

I also threw in some chili chowder to give a bit more of a full-bodied flavor. 

So Question 1: Should I rub the ribs tonight or wait until tomorrow morning? 

I'm guessing that rubbing them tonight will allow the spices and flavors to permeate the rib meat to a greater extent than waiting until morning.  But I question what to do as I definitely don't want to little or too much saturation.  My gut tells me to just wait until morning and then wait another couple hours before cooking. 

Question 2:  Should I go full conversion to a smoker or just grill the ribs indirectly? What are the pros and cons of each?

My thinking is that I want to do the full conversion.  This will take 5-6 hours as opposed to grilling indirectly which will only take 2-3. My only qualm is the fear of too much smoke permeating the ribs if I smoke for 5-6 hours.  My plan is to fashion one of these http://smokenator.com/Store/c/2/smokenator-1000



out of a 17 x 11 cookie sheet, and smoking the ribs at 210-230 for 5-6 hours.  I will use a drip pan and try to keep constant steam in the grill to keep the ribs from drying out.  I'll paint some of the bbq sauce on near the end and finish the ribs for 15-20 more minutes.

If I can't get the smokenator thing to work right, or I screw up making it I will use the method outlined here --> http://www.bbqrevolution.com/weber-kettle-cooking-smoked-spare-ribs/

Question 3: Will it be necessary to spray or mop the ribs to keep them from drying out?  If it is I just planned on spraying the ribs with some of the cider every so often. 

Question 3:


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« Last Edit: December 07, 2012, 05:15:46 PM by nicname »
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Offline Cire

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1.  Night before, will draW out water which helps flavor and bark.

2.  I know competition guys that swear all you need is a grill, I've had ribs like that  they were some of the best I've had.  It its hard to do though and really  the number ouof racks you can do.  For the money and quality I would seriously consider a Weber smokey mountain, or the do it yourself version.  The amount of smoke is related to the amount of wood and type.  Meat will only take in smoke for the first 1.5_ 2 hours, it's based on the doneness of the meat.    as soon as the meat had developed the first crust make sure to not add any more wood.  I always load my fire box with enough wills chunks early on and I don't really add any more.  I also have had my smoker for 4 years and know how it is going to burn.  Don't eff with chips, get a bag of fist sized chunks.  Cherry, hickory, pecan, oak, apple.  I like apple and hickory, cherry is also good if you don't over do it.  I use three Apple for every hickory. 

3.  I spray apple juice or if you have an actual brush, mop it with the liquid mixed  the rub you used.  If your heat is low enough 225 isu, it's hard to dry out spares. 

Offline Cire

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Also looking at your rub again and with all that sugar you don't want it near a fire.

Offline scottwildcat

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Listen to Cire

Offline Dr Rick Daris

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i'd probably listen to cire or clams. they both know a lot about smoking. i don't, but i do have a super easy way to make pretty decent ribs every time.

1)go here and buy this

http://www.rudysbbq.com/store/p-15-rudys-rub.aspx



2)peel the back membrane off the ribs the night before. coat lightly with mustard. apply the rub.

3)the next day, set/get smoker to 225. put in wood. i use hickory.

4)put in ribs. set timer for three hours. then take ribs out when timer goes off.

5)wrap ribs in foil with a little bit of apple juice. put back on. set timer for two hours then take ribs out when timer goes off.

6)take ribs out of foil. put back in smoker. set timer for one hour then take ribs out when timer goes off.

7)take ribs out. let sit for ten minutes. cut and eat.


*if you are doing the ribs at home and need to take them somewhere (friends house/fball stadium/etc.) then you can wrap them back up in foil, wrap the foil in some old towels and throw in a cooler. they'll keep just fine for 2-3 hours.

Offline Cire

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mustard is a great idea, I held off a while but always do it now.

RD's 3-2-1 is a great rule of thumb as well though make sure you are not running too hot while they are in the foil.  If you are running hot when it's time to foil, go down to an hour or an hour and a half.


If you want to add sauce at the end do it the last hour.

Offline nicname

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I planned on doing the 3-2-1 method.  I bought some tin snips and fashioned a homemade smokenator out of a cookie sheet.  It is ugly but should be fully functional and create a firewall between the coals and the meat. 

I think i'm about ready to get started.  I'll probably post pics when everything is all said and done. 

I will say one thing.  Making rub and sauce is expensive if you don't have many spices.  Luckily I have a pretty large array and only needed to pick up a few items. 
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Offline pissclams

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ya it's cheaper just to buy a premade rub or go to a farmer's market where you can buy spice by the bag for $1/each.

i don't put the rub on the night before because the high salt content of the rub will pull the moisture out of the meat and i want it to have as much moisture as it can when it's cooking b/c moist meat cooks faster than dry meat. and the more moisture it starts cooking with, the more moisture it will stop cooking with.  MOIST.  <---terrible word

i usually sauce during the last hour


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Offline nicname

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ya it's cheaper just to buy a premade rub or go to a farmer's market where you can buy spice by the bag for $1/each.

i don't put the rub on the night before because the high salt content of the rub will pull the moisture out of the meat and i want it to have as much moisture as it can when it's cooking b/c moist meat cooks faster than dry meat. and the more moisture it starts cooking with, the more moisture it will stop cooking with.  MOIST.  <---terrible word

i usually sauce during the last hour

This was what I was questioning when deciding.  In the end I went with the overnight.  I did soak the ribs in Apple cider before hand and will spray them with more cider when I have to refill the water pan/ add more coals. 

If there was a gif of nicname thwarting the attempted-flag-taker and then gesturing him to suck it, followed by motioning for all of Hilton Shelter to boo him louder, it'd be better than that auburn gif.


Offline nicname

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update - I'm about 40 minutes in and the smoke is going good.  It smells great coming out the door and sticks to my clothes when I come back inside. The dome temp has kept a steady 230 but I opened up the to vents a bit more to hopefully raise the dome temp to around 245-250.  I'm guessing the grill temp is a bit lower than that on the dome so I want to bump up the temp. 

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Offline XocolateThundarr

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As stated before, make sure you regulate the heat to 220 to 230.  In my opinion, that is one of the most important part about smoking ribs.  Keep it low and cook slow, follow the 3-2-1 and you should be in business.

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i've done rub on meat the night before and rub on meat the minute before and haven't really noticed a big difference, the science would tell me though that there would be one so that's why i do it the way i do it now

also, don't get caught chasing temps, that's no way to smoke. generally, the smoker is going to sit where it wants to sit and you just got to let it do its thing.  it can be a pain in the ass messing with those air inlets trying to get it exactly where you want it.  as long as it's not too high, or too low, just let it cruise.


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Offline nicname

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i've done rub on meat the night before and rub on meat the minute before and haven't really noticed a big difference, the science would tell me though that there would be one so that's why i do it the way i do it now

also, don't get caught chasing temps, that's no way to smoke. generally, the smoker is going to sit where it wants to sit and you just got to let it do its thing.  it can be a pain in the ass messing with those air inlets trying to get it exactly where you want it.  as long as it's not too high, or too low, just let it cruise.

I hear you, and it is seeming to hold pretty well. 
If there was a gif of nicname thwarting the attempted-flag-taker and then gesturing him to suck it, followed by motioning for all of Hilton Shelter to boo him louder, it'd be better than that auburn gif.


Offline p1k3

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Usually smoking noobs don't jump right into ribs, but I like your ambition.

1. I usually rub them an hour or so before. Never tried overnight except with thanksgiving turkey

2. Go with the smoker conversion or whatever/however that works. 2-3 hours for ribs is way too little time. I usually go 10.

3. Not necessarily. My uncle will spray with apple juice periodically but personally I like to foil the ribs about 2-3 hours into the cook. This allows them to stay moist and become tender as eff. I usually don't put sauce on the ribs while cooking unless I've been drinking and just want to destroy them with my mouth.


As stated before, make sure you regulate the heat to 220 to 230.  In my opinion, that is one of the most important part about smoking ribs.  Keep it low and cook slow, follow the 3-2-1 and you should be in business.

This is too hot imo. I like shooting for 180-200 for 10 hours or so.

Offline wes mantooth

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I like to use a foil packet the last hour to hour and a half consisting of brown sugar, butter, and a little more rub.  Then back on the smoker meat side down.

Offline sonofdaxjones

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Hope fully producing a good firm, tasty bite . . . never want "fall off the bone".   NEVER

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Offline wes mantooth

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Hope fully producing a good firm, tasty bite . . . never want "fall off the bone".   NEVER

yeah this is the easiest way to find out who sucks at bbq'ing.  "aw man, i made some ribs this weekend, fell right off the bone!"  gross

Offline XocolateThundarr

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Usually smoking noobs don't jump right into ribs, but I like your ambition.

1. I usually rub them an hour or so before. Never tried overnight except with thanksgiving turkey

2. Go with the smoker conversion or whatever/however that works. 2-3 hours for ribs is way too little time. I usually go 10.

3. Not necessarily. My uncle will spray with apple juice periodically but personally I like to foil the ribs about 2-3 hours into the cook. This allows them to stay moist and become tender as eff. I usually don't put sauce on the ribs while cooking unless I've been drinking and just want to destroy them with my mouth.


As stated before, make sure you regulate the heat to 220 to 230.  In my opinion, that is one of the most important part about smoking ribs.  Keep it low and cook slow, follow the 3-2-1 and you should be in business.

This is too hot imo. I like shooting for 180-200 for 10 hours or so.

If you are cooking for 10 hours, then yes your temp range is ideal.  I have had really good results with the 6-7 hour cook time.  I guess you find out what works for you and stick with it.  Hope they turn out great.

Offline nicname

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Just put some more water in the water dish (I actually have two a small one that needs to be refilled every hour or so and there is water in the drip pan below the ribs). All looks good.  Temp is still holding at around 235-240.  Steady as she goes.

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Offline WillieWatanabe

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If someone were to get into smoking...what would be you guys recommendation for a starter smoker? tia
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Offline XocolateThundarr

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nicname, please post pics of your creation when it is done cooking.

Offline pissclams

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If someone were to get into smoking...what would be you guys recommendation for a starter smoker? tia

18.5 inch weber smokey mountain


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Offline pissclams

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eff smoking @ 180-200, thats insane and there's no reason to cook that low unless you just want to smoke for a  long time. 

also, it should be noted that back ribs are a lot quicker to smoke than spare ribs.  spares take 7-8 hrs, backs take 3-5.  both @ ~240-260.


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Offline WillieWatanabe

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t-y pissclams.
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Offline pissclams

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Nicname smokes ribs on kettle: Success = will bring to MOAP (ADVICE WANTED)
« Reply #24 on: August 15, 2012, 03:45:29 PM »
t-y pissclams.
it's prob the most popular smoker out there and definitely the best BANG-4-BUCK.  if you decide you hate it you'll have no problem selling it for a decent price


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