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Drapers BBQ – MOO’d Enhancer Beef Rub…

Posted in backyard, Important News, Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 11, 2012 by Big JT

2 weeks ago at the Benton,Ky BBQ Competition I received a complimentary 1lb bag of the new MOO’d Enhancer beef rub from Drapers BBQ.I was really looking forward to trying it out on a brisket, but that will have to wait as the selection at the local Sams Club was pretty bad this morning. So instead I bought two rather large T-Bone steaks so I could see how it would hold up to some grilling. The Steaks looked pretty good so I brought them home and went to bed (3rd shifter) About noon I woke up and pulled the steaks out of the fridge and unwrapped them. I then went to my competition bin and got the foil bag of DBQ Moo’d Enhancer. Upon opening the bag for the first time you get hit right in the face with the freshness of the rub and all the different elements to it. I put a light-medium coating of Moo’d Enhancer on both sides of the steaks as I was going to let them come up to room temp while the Weber was warming up.

Once the Weber was up to temp (about a 1 and a holy crap that’s hot count holding your hand over it) I put the steaks on the cool side i had set up to use the Reverse Sear or Finney Method (http://www.ironpigbbq.com/Reverse-Sear.html) I really like this method as it allows you to more precisely determine your finish temp (130-135*) After about 30 Minutes i flipped the steaks over to the sear side of the Weber, and it didn’t take long to get the outside nice and seared.

I bring the steaks back into the house and find out that Lisa had made some tater tots and a Caesar salad to finish off the mega lunch we had going on. I allowed the steaks to rest loosely covered with foil for about 10 minutes, and yes my counter top is lime green… It goes with the velvet wallpaper we have in the house. After about 10 minutes I couldn’t stand the wait anymore as the smell was driving me nuts with anticipation (my mouth is actually watering again as i type this) So i loaded up the plate, I look over to Lisa who is standing at the counter like a shark on blood devouring her first two bites of steak. The next sentence out of her mouth made me realize that we had a winner on her hands and I quote ” You know, i went to the store and bought this (Heinz 57 sauce that she puts on everything) and I don’t think I’m going to use it”  That statement shocked me.  So i dive into the steak and wow… what a flavor explosion the flavor of the rub held up to the grilling and it didn’t overpower the flavor of the steak, it really let the meat be the star, I would really love to try this on some Prime or Wagyu. I actually could have put it on a little heavier and it still would have done great. Now back to Lisa, the final statement she made which really told me that this was one of the best steaks she had was, “Oh my gosh, I am so glad i’m not a vegetarian right now…) Now onto the best part of this meal was the tater tots at the bottom of the pile which had time to marinate in the au jus that came from the steak… absolutely delicious, had all the flavor of the beef and the Moo’d Enhancer. I would definitely give this rub a shot it is great for steaks, or any beef for that matter. I can’t wait to give it a shot on some brisket and try to work it into my competition line up. I have a feeling this rub will take off and it is going to go huge on the competition circuit. Bottom line is that this rub stands up and accentuates the beef flavor that sometimes gets lost when cooking beef over fire. It puts a great crust on your meat when cooking over direct fire, it is a really bold flavored rub that mellows a bit with cooking, and it is a more savory rub as opposed to salt/pepper rub. The flavor is more intense due to all the different spices and flavors hitting you at different times during the tasting.

I also have a great new beef rub from Simply Marvelous that i believe will compliment this rub if used in a layering process. I will be doing a side by side comparison with these two in the near future.

I was also let in on a little secret from Shane @ DBQ about a new product that will be hitting the scene soon I hope. I know it will take a lot of work out of my prep for a competition.

Be sure to check out our BBQ 101 class that we have scheduled for July at the Eastside Community Center.

Wild Ride coming…

Posted in Competition BBQ, Important News with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 8, 2012 by Big JT

Well, after firing up the CTO for the first time in about 3-4 months it seems that I have been bitten with the bbq bug again (not that it ever went away). I cooked quite a bit of food for the Superbowl and I am starting to get some requests for brisket and ribs for Valentines Day dinners.

In March I am heading out to Kansas City with a few BBQ friends and we are going to try and hit up a few local bbq places as well as stop into Ambrosi Brothers knife shop. Speaking of knives I just received my new slicer via FedEx today. It is a Glestian 12″ Beef Slicer, i ordered it from http://www.knifemerchant.com and I am really excited to use it. I also purchased a digital camcorder today so that in the next few weeks I can start adding videos and cook demos to the website.

Shortly after returning from Kansas we will be on the road to the first stop on the competition trail for 2012. We will be in Benton, Ky cooking at their Tater Day BBQ Competition. We have cooked here the past two years and I will probably keep cooking it since it was the first professional competition i cooked. We actually won 5th place Chicken.

The bbq forums are buzzing with excitement about the upcoming BBQ Pitmasters Season 3 casting call, I did shoot and submit a video and I will have it up on this site soon. I highly doubt that I will be chosen, but if i am it will be a Wild ride for sure.

I am heavily anticipating the call from Jamie Geer about my new Jambo pit. I was told it would possibly be ready for pick up by April so I wont be cooking on it in Benton, but I am having a friend help me out down there. Shane Draper from Drapers BBQ will be cooking with me down in Benton and providing me use of his cookers for the weekend. I hope we do well and believe me I wouldn’t be able to cook down there if it hadn’t been for him stepping up to help me out.  Shane is also helping out the team this year as a sponsor. This year we will be using his Smokin’ Sauce in competitions. The sauce is great, it is a very original sauce and has some many subtle flavorings that help bring out the flavor of rubs and the meat. I have used it with my competitions rubs from Simply Marvelous and they pair up nicely.

Looking forward to the next few months and looking forward to seeing all the BBQ crew when we hit the competition trail. Hang on its gonna be a wild ride!

Hot and Fast cooking…

Posted in Around the house, Competition BBQ with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2011 by Big JT

Earlier this year I started cooking with the Hot and Fast technique . I was sort of hesitant to switch to Hot and fast from Low and Slow but I felt like i wasn’t getting the calls and was leaving a lot of points on the table. So two competitions into the season cooking low and slow I did a complete overhaul of my cooking methods and flavor profiles. I went from using 3-5 different rubs and sauces to only using 2 rubs and 2 different types of sauce.  I tried to simplify my ways of cooking to help minimize the amount of  hands on time so it gave me less time to over think and screw up my cooks.

Today i cooked a 19lb brisket, from start to finish it was a 6 hour cook, it is still resting right now. I am using my new beef rub I got mixed from the Co-pack. Like i said last year i felt that I was leaving a few taste points on the table so I am hoping this new beef rub will help out in the long run.  I am hoping that I will have my pork rub, beef rub, and sauce ready to send out samples next year at some point.

If you are looking for a good gift for your BBQ guy / gal check out http://drapersbbq.com/store/page4.html and get them the all in one gift for great BBQ.  I use Drapers BBQ products around the house and will be using their sauce in competitions next year. Shane is a good guy and has a great product don’t be afraid to try Drapers BBQ products.

I have heard recently that Mojobricks ( www.mojobricks.com ) will be coming out with a few new products in the next few months. I am looking forward to using them next year during competition season.

Speaking of next BBQ season, plans are in the works to head West to Las Vegas in March for the Smoke on the Water bbq competition. Also planning a trip down to Burleson, Tx to pick up my new Jamob Pit.  We are looking at several competitions and adding and subtracting some so we can branch out to new competitions and meat new teams.

 

Holiday cooking Tips…

Posted in Around the house, Recipes with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 21, 2011 by Big JT

If I had one single tip for how to improve your holiday bird cook…..it would be summed up in one single word….BRINE!

There is a science to the brine, but without getting into it here is the simple explanation:  When the bird absorbs the brine. There, the brine begins to denature the meat proteins, causing them to unwind and form a matrix that traps the water. And if the brine includes herbs, garlic,or peppercorns, those flavors are trapped in the meat, too. Instead of seasoning on the surface only, as most cooks do, brining carries the seasonings throughout, and YES you can brine an enhanced bird as well due to osmosis it will help balance out the salt solution between the brine and the bird.

A quick search on your favorite internet search engine will yield a plethera of brine recipes. Over the years, I’ve ended up with a pretty simple brine recipe. I have found that the salt is the real secret to a brine. All the other stuff helps a little, but to keep it easy, I like a nice and simple brine:

  • 1 gallon of water
  • 1 cup salt (Kosher)
  • 1/2 cup Dark Brown Sugar
  • About a palmful (I’d guess a TBS or more) of whole peppercorns
  • Sometimes if I feel the spirit, I’ll add a squeeze of honey or maple syrup or squeeze a fresh orange or lemon

Just whip up the brine, place the completely thawed turkey SLOWLY into the brine and if necessary, top off with water to completely submerge. I’ve used a 5 gallon bucket before, but a 16 qt stockpot works well too. You want to make sure not to use an enhanced bird (injected) as it won’t take the brine as easily and may already have salt in it. I brine my turkeys for 18-24 hours…..usually 24 hours, if I’ve not pushed the time limit!

One big tip that I can offer regarding brining is this…..PLAN FOR ENOUGH TIME FOR THE BIRD TO REST!!! The skin on a brined bird will also take on some moisture with the process. Pur right on the smoker, this will make more of a “rubbery” skin when finished. If, on the other hand, you take the bird out of the brine the night before the big cook and place it back in the fridge on a rack (or upside down plate in a pan….just to keep it out off the bottom and out of the water), the refer will “dehydrate” the skin a bit and allow it to tighten back up and go back to “normal”. This will yield a better finish texture to the skin in the long run.

As far as seasoning the bird after the brine, I personally will use Simply Marvelous Sweet Seduction for my turkey cook this Holiday Season.  But if you want to be creative you can just about anything  you want to, or you can tweak this simple Turkey seasoning to your tastes.

Ingredients

  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary leaves
  • 4 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 4 teaspoons minced onion
  • 4 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup white wine Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Directions

  1. In a blender or food processor, mix rosemary, thyme, onion, garlic, white wine Worcestershire sauce, coarse salt, pepper, and olive oil. Pulse until well blended. Cover, and chill in the refrigerator at least 10 minutes before rubbing under turkey skin or injecting into meat as desired.

THE COOK

So…. After you take the bird out of the brine and allow it to rest, apply your seasoning of choice to the bird and pop it into the Cooking device of your choice. For me I don’t use the oven very often anymore, so I would turn to my old stand by UDS or if  I am cooking multiple birds I will fire up my CTO and crank the heat up as high as i can get it. I have found that poultry responds better to a higher heat cook rather than a low and slow as poultry will soak up smoke and the skin will be rubbery if cooked at lower temps. When smoking your bird stick with a lighter fruit wood instead of a heavier flavored wood such as hickory or mesquite. If you do not have access or do not want a smoked bird for your Holiday you can turn out a great bird in the oven.

Before you pop the bird into the Smoker or Oven you want to take into consideration that the White meat and Dark meat have different finishing temps.  White Meat is done at a lower temperature than Dark meat. When cooking I like taking the bird to about  170* in the thigh and pull it once it reaches that temp. Residual cooking will take it up a few more degrees but it shouldn’t overcook the white meat (which is done about 10* before that). Some people will put a foil tent over the top of the breast  to help keep from overcooking, but I like taking a zip top bag and filling it with ice and place on the breast of the bird for about 15-20 minutes to help chill it so it wont cook as fast.

Once the bird is cooked let it sit and rest for about 30 minutes before carving. I have included a Turkey carving video for you to get an idea of how to do it.

If you follow these cooking tips you will have a bird that will have your friends and family raving about it all year long.  I also want to thank  and give credit to Kempis for all his help for putting this together.