There comes a time in every chefs life to start experimentation. I have always loved BBQ, the smell, the caramelizing of the meat, the sauce and most of all the long slow cooking process it endures. The only thing was I have never really dove into the actual process myself until recently. I mean I have done it from time to time in places I have worked, but I never looked into the science of it. The why? The How?
Over this past year I have been doing a lot of extensive research and inquiring through a buddy of mine, Beau, who I look up to in when it comes to BBQ. Through my exploration I have come to notice that everyone has a different wood, rub, brine dry or wet and apparatus they like to use when it come to smoking. Does that really matter? Or is it simply understanding the science behind the smoker, the meat and how the heat forces the meat to react?
Pondering all these questions I have found that every time I have ran an experiment something new happens. From the heat to the rub to the type of smoker used, every combination fosters a different outcome. I love this! I have smoked baby back ribs, chicken, turkey, pork belly, pork butt, etc. you name it I have probably smoked it at least once. Looking back on this last year where I have really been looking at BBQ like a science I have concluded that the more combinations the more fun you can have with BBQ.
In talking with my buddy, Beau, I have been trying to also incorporate Sous Vide and BBQ together. Through trial and error I have found this can be done before and after any sort of meat is smoked. This was something that I ran across on Chef Steps (with their smoker-less brisket) and wanted to push the envelope a little more. Through this I found that moisture in the meat was retained causing a juicier meatier outcome.
Following this weekend, my next day off, I will have recipes and pictures of all my experiments that I have ran in the past year. This was so much fun for me as I filled many bellies and saw many smiles based on the outcome.