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Thread: A little help here!

  1. #1

    Default A little help here!

    Hey guys! New to the forum and reading up lots already.

    I've been smoking some Baby Back and I've been getting mixed results. They're called Pork Loin Baby Back ribs meaning I get a piece of the leaner pork loin on one end of the ribs.

    My problem is after a smoke, one end is tender, moist and just enough bite. Then you get to the thicker part of the ribs and it's half boiled chicken texture dry (pork loin I'm assuming) and half tender, moist and fall off the bone (closer to the bone).

    I don't want to cut off the pork loin and waste meat, so it there a way to even things out?

    Thanks in advance smokers!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Cedar, MN (but still not far enough from the Cities)
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    693

    Default

    For clarification, you're talking about a cut that's essentially the rack of ribs with the loin attached? In other words, like a whole rack of pork chops?

    How much/how thick a piece of the loin is attached?


    And welcome to the forum, BTW!!
    Last edited by bigwalleye; 02-18-2016 at 10:45 AM.
    I believe in catch and release fishing. I don't want to EAT 'em all, I just want to GREET 'em all!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Location
    Plano, Texas
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    587

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    Welcome to the family....
    Remember: If it weren't for marriage, men would go through life thinking they had no faults at all

  4. #4

    Default

    Thanks for the welcome. Unfortunately my actual family can't stand the constant smell of smoke on my clothes now!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Cedar, MN (but still not far enough from the Cities)
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    693

    Default

    That's OK Kenjamin. My family has folks that are a little off the mark as well.

    WE'll still like ya, and we understand.

    So what's up with there ribs??
    I believe in catch and release fishing. I don't want to EAT 'em all, I just want to GREET 'em all!

  6. #6

    Default

    Hey bigwalleye,

    Just smoked a few more ribs yesterday. They're IBP Pork Loin Baby Back Ribs. So I've taken a picture and pointed at the culprit. You can see that it's a lot dryer/whiter looking than the wetter/darker succulent meat below.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    I have a feeling it's because of the leaner meat, but don't know how to remedy. Your expertise is greatly appreciated.

    Also I smoked my first short ribs, I think that's what I'll eat for the rest of my life now.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    Cedar, MN (but still not far enough from the Cities)
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    693

    Default

    Yes, that's pretty standard. I believe as they trim the loin off the ribs, some get trimmed a little closer than others. Only thing you can do is try to pick ribs that are trimmed close to the same. That way, at least they're all consistent.

    What are you using for time and temp? Foil or not?

    As an example, I run about 6 hours, straight time, no foil, at 200 to 210, and look for the meat to pull back from the ends of the rib bones as a secondary check. Try a search for the "Texas Crutch", also called the 3-2-1 method. Involves straight smoking, a period of time in foil, and then a period of time back out of the foil. That may help tenderize and moisten those thicker loin meat areas. Some folks will use apple juice in the foil, some orange juice, some nothing at all. I find foil is more forgiving on salt based rubs than on sugar based rubs. I like ribs "nekkid" with a sugar based rub, has some salt in it, but I like the "little bit salty, little bit sticky, little bit sweet, little bit smoky" thing.
    Don't discount mixing woods in the smokebox, like apple and cherry for ribs, I also add 4 or 5 charcoal briquettes. It kicks the smoke flavor to a whole 'nother level.
    I believe in catch and release fishing. I don't want to EAT 'em all, I just want to GREET 'em all!

  8. #8

    Default

    I was afraid you'd say that about the loin. I'll have to resort to trimming them off myself as I bought in bulk.

    For the smoking, I was using a 250 for 2.5 then 160 for 1.5 no foil in an electric smoker, resulting in the the picture I sent. I tried to drop to 225 for 2.5 with a 150 for 1.5 but I was pulling too hard to get the meat off the rib and the loin was still bone dry.

    I'll try your 6 hour no foil at 200 to 210 and see if that helps me get some awesome ribs.

    Currently my rub is salt, paprika, pepper, garlic, brown sugar and a kick of cayenne. Is that considered salt-based or sugar-based?

    Also with the smoke, I'm using a 50/50 hickory and apple. Never heard of a full fruit woods mix online so will have to give that a try!

    Thanks for the help!

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
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    Cedar, MN (but still not far enough from the Cities)
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    Default

    How much sugar vs salt? I start with white sugar, seems like it takes extended heat better than brown. I start with a cup of white sugar, and everything else goes in after that, so I'm pretty heavy sugar.

    Try also dropping your temp and going longer. 6 hours no foil looks dry on the outside, but the meat is tender, i.e., bite off the bone. If you want more like grab it with your teeth and pull the whole bone out, go more toward foil.

    I used to do a twist off 3-2-1, going like 3 1/2, 1 1/4, 1 1/4. Idea being the initial 3 or whatever sets the smoke and the bark, the foil softens the bark, drives the temp up, holds in the moisture, and the 1 dries them out a little again.

    Low and slow is the goal. I'd be curious what your original heat cycle would do if you left them on longer still, out to the 6 hour mark.

    It's all a delicious experiment.

    Are you actually using a Smokintex or something else? You really didn't indicate on way or the other, so I have to ask. My advice is somewhat colored by the use of the ST, and if you're using a dry heat smoker, your mileage may vary...ST is a sealed unit which holds moisture inside the meat and the cabinet. Non-sealed smokers tend to dry meat out more, and are typically a very dry heat, so some folks resort to a water pan, apple juice spritzes, foil, etc.
    I believe in catch and release fishing. I don't want to EAT 'em all, I just want to GREET 'em all!

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jun 2015
    Location
    Escondido CA
    Posts
    31

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    Welcome to the family, True story.. When I did my break in smoke, I went to the store to buy some apple wood chunks for my first rack of ribs.
    I am at checkout and the lady says to me "You smell delicious". So some folks dig that smell.
    Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy, B. Franklin

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