True or False....As long as you Make Smoke your meat will Take Smoke...

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by chef jimmyj, Feb 4, 2012.

  1. True...The longer you smoke it the more the flavor will accumulate.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  2. False...Meat will only take Smoke for 2-3 hours, no matter what.

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  3. Smoke Ring don't mean SQUAT!

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. It ain't Good Q if it ain't got a SMOKE RING!

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
Multiple votes are allowed.
  1. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    I frequently see statements like, "Meat only takes smoke for 3 hours so why waste wood!"...Or..."If there's Meat in the Smoker, I'm makin' smoke!"....So What do you think?

    Smoke is made up of microscopic Flavorful Particulate Matter that is liberated from the burning wood along with a variety of Gasses, some Nitrogen based, depending on the source there is also significant Heat...When our Meat comes in contact with the Smoke, these Flavor Particles adhere to the Surface of the meat and the Gasses dissolve into the moisture in the muscle and react with the Myoglobin in the meat to set the Pink color...As time progresses more Flavor Particles accumulate and more Gasses dissolve and penetrate into the meat increasing the depth of the Pink color...At some point approximately 2-3 hours after exposure begins, meat reaches 140°F, the Heat has sufficiently Denatured the Muscle Proteins, aka Cooked them, and Dehydrated the surface of the meat to the point that the Gasses can no longer penetrate. However the Flavor Particles are still present and continue to bounce into and adhere to the Surface of the meat...As long as Smoke is generated and there is Meat for the Flavor Particles to adhere to, there will be an ever increasing accumulations of these Flavor Particles on the surface and the flavor we call Smokey Goodness will increase...There will be no increased depth of the Pink Ring for reasons previously stated...I have twice stated the Flavor particles adhere to the SURFACE of the meat because, I believe very little of these Flavor Particles are carried and/or dissolved into the meat with the Nitrogen based Gasses that form the " Smoke Ring "...

    Bottom line...You will only get a Smoke Ring during the first 2-3 hours but if you want a stronger Smoke Flavor let the Smoke flow as long as you got Meat in the Smoker...JJ
     
    Last edited: Apr 21, 2014
  2. I would agree with you JJ,  next time you make Pulled Pork try a piece out of the middle that has no part of the out side with it and see if you "taste" smoke, this is why the "bark" is so important
     
  3. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Chef

    Sounds like a pretty legitimate argument to me.   I have to agree but my next question  is as the fat renders from the meat and covers the surface or drips off are the smoke particles lost?  How about the steam generated by the drippings?  Maybe the smoke particles do enter the surface of the meat to a depth that they can't be washed or brushed off.

    I guess a good way to test that would be to smoke a piece of meat then scrub it with clear water and see how the smoke taste is affected.  I'll let someone else try that because I don't waste my BBQ!
     
  4. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    The Fat increases the Smoke flavor because Fat absorbs and holds flavor very quickly...Check out a stick of Land o' Lakes Butter...They advertise they use special wrapping paper to keep out unwanted flavors...  I didn't mean to give the impression that Smoke Flavor is like Road Dust that is just laying on the surface...There are interactions taking place binding and causing the particles to adhere to the surface Proteins and Fats...And...There may very well be some amount of flavor penetration because there are not JUST Particles and Gasses...There are many reactions taking place when the meat comes in contact with the smoke...But I am just not conviced Smoke Ring is that big a deal. And I don't think it is a waste of wood to smoke the entire time... I use both my offset NB with Charcoal and now the MES and I get great Q off both...Wash my Q!!! NEVER!!!...JJ
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  5. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    JJ,

     I been trying to tell folks for a few years that meat does not quit taking smoke (flavor) after a certain time.

    If it quit taking on flavor after X amount of time , there would really be no reason to do the low and slow thing we do.

     you could just hit the meat w/ smoke for X amount of time and then finish over / in any heat source  till done.

       Every so often i see a post that says, i read or i heard that meat will only except smoke for X amount of hours.

    But i have never seen any reference to back this statement up. If anyone has reference to show this please send it to me or post it please.
     
  6. you can smoke stuff till 135 IT and then finish in  an alternate cooker, the big sausage makers smoke and then steam, I have made ring bologna smoking until 135 then poached to 158 and it still had a smoke flavor

    I have heard of people smoking butts , briskets, and ribs and then finishing in ovens as well, on the other hand I don't see a problem with smoking the entire time, unless it starts to give you that harsh bitterness taste

    The low and slow is to make tough meat tender
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  7. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    I have to agree with Big Casino on this one

    Low and slow is more about the tenderness of the final product.   I guess we will have to have a taste test at the next SELA gathering.  A brisky cooked three hours on the smoke then set in an oven and a briskey completed on the Lang.  Might be fun.
     
  8. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    True, you can stop smoking any cut at any temp and finish w/ another type of heat source.

     But the original post was weather meat would quit absorbing flavor at a certain temp.

     So if you smoked your bologna to 158 instead of  stopping at 135 it would have had more of a smoked flavor. as it does not stop absorbing flavor at 135.
     
  9. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Aside from the scientific findings, this is what I have found through trial & error. Meat will take on smoke as long as it is exposed to smoke. The smoke ring is cool, but doesn't affect the taste. If you put the meat in the smoker cold right out of the fridge & when you first start the fire then you get a deeper smoke ring. If you wait until the smoker gets to temp or higher & have let the meat sit at room temp before putting it in the smoker the smoke ring will not be as prominent. If you really want a beautiful smoke ring, marinate the meat in a brine with cure in it for 24 hours, the cure will penetrate the meat a half to one inch & give it a red color that looks like you painted it on. This will even work in an electric smoker.
     
  10. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member


    The only difference in a brisket smoked @ 235 till done w/ smoke applied the full time and one smoked for 3 [email protected] and finished in an oven at 235

    till done, would be the flavor. After all ,235 degree heat is 235 degree heat.  the meat would still be dripping fat . the temp would still be the same the

    Meat would still be tender. The only difference i could see would be  minute and that would be humidity in the cooking chamber.
     
  11. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Nitrogen Dioxide is the gas that forms the smoke ring. I've posted this before but one more time won't hurt, a good explanation of the smoke ring formation(a very short read)-

    http://www.smokingpit.com/Info/SmokeRing.pdf

    Too much smoke can be a problem, especially if you are using mesquite.
     
  12. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Interesting Article Harry, I wonder if the same applies to Turkey Skin Color...JJ
     
  13. terry colwell

    terry colwell Smoking Fanatic

    The articles I have researched say that meat will except smoke and make the smoke ring till the meat reaches around 150 degrees IT. I read that you put cold meat into the smoker because cold meat takes longer to get to 150 then say room temp meat(duh) [​IMG]   I believe this to effect the SMOKE RING ONLY... I am in the camp that as long as smoke flavor is floating around the meat, the meat is getting flavor.

     I guess the only way to settle it is to do a cook off. Do two pieces as close to each other you can find,Smoke the same, one till IT is 150, or what ever you desire. And the other cooked with same amount of smoke from start to finish , then have someone else taste test them for you. I find when I am around the smoker all day I can not taste the smoke as well as my family that has not been around it all day.I think this test will settle the debate for MOST ppl, always have the DIE HARD either way that swear by this or that and will never change their mind because they just Can't be wrong.
     
  14. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    But Eman,  you said in your first post  "  If it quit taking on flavor after X amount of time , there would really be no reason to do the low and slow thing we do"   I am just respectfully submitting that the main reason I do the low and slow is because it makes even inexpensive cuts of meat tender.  I agree with the smoke thing,  that the longer you smoke the more smoke particles are captured by the meat and the deeper the smoke flavor.

    I believe general consensus is that the smoke ring is generated within the first couple of hours and the ring is formed by the interaction of either naturally occurring nitrites and NO compounds found in wood or by the application of cure with the hemoglobin and proteins in the meat.  I know that we are always talking about how cures enhance the flavor of green bacon so I have to assume that a good smoke ring also has some effect on the flavor.   Maybe we need to rethink that?
     
  15. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

     i agree that the smoke ring quits forming at a certain temp. (  have seen articles that give this temp from 130 to 160 so who knows exactly?)

    My comments were not about the smoke ring in any way, shape or form. Only about the past comments that meat quits taking on smoke FLAVOR at a certain temp.
     
  16. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Is it just me or is nobody seeing this on the main forum?...It only shows up on the General Discussion forum...JJ
     
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2012
  17. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hey JJ. Great Thread.
     
  18. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    JJ its showing up in new port but not the activity feed. Ill look into this.
     
  19. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

Share This Page