Step 2 to my pulled pork process deals with Rubs.
Part 2 – Rubbin’ It Out
Ask a BBQ cook about their rub recipe and prepare for a colorful retort. ; There is not a more guarded secret than a cooks BBQ Rub recipe. ; If its your first time smoking, you can find many tasty rubs in your local supermarket. ; Don’t go cheap!!! ; If you can spend a little more money on your rub, you typically get better quality ingredients and a better taste. ; If you want to venture further from the supermarket, go to a BBQ specialty store or better yet the web. ; These three rubs are my favorite rubs for pork:
These are all quality rubs that give BBQ (or hamburgers) a good blend of spice, salt, and sugar to form that perfect crust. ; If you are really bold, then you can make your own. ; Addiction to BBQ becomes compulsion in trying to find the right rub recipe. ; You have to get that perfect blend to get your flavors just right. ; Although I am not at liberty to share my recipe, there are some things to consider when looking at building your own rub.
I am a huge fan of Alton Brown’s Good Eats on Food Network. ; He did a Pulled Pork special where he utilizes a very basic rub recipe. ; However, I use his recipe from the Baby-Back episode as a base for my rubs. ; I find it deeper in flavor and I like the use of salt and brown sugar in my rubs. ; Brown Sugar is basic pork BBQ. ; The use of brown sugar helps form a solid bark or crust around the outside of your meat. ; That crust is crucial. ; It provides a layer of protection to hold in the juices of the meat. ; The caramelized sugar also packs huge flavor. ; Your rub encapsulates the caramelized sugar to give you a powerful bite. ; This is BBQ divinity.
After salt and brown sugar, consider other spice options. ; Surf the web for some of your favorite cooking shows or cooks and see what they use. ; The rub can be as basic or as complex as you want. ; Most rubs use spices like paprika, cumin, coriander, black pepper, white pepper, mustard, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, chili powder, thyme, bay leaf, fennel seed, jalapeño powder, and old bay. ; Experiment with mixtures and ingredients to find what you really like. ; Grilled pork chops or hamburgers give the perfect quick test rather than awaiting results after a 5 to 10 hour smoke.
Now that you have built your rub, its time to get prepared to smoke. ; But what will you need?