Cherry based dry rub, cold/warm/hot cherry smoke and the Smoke Vault 24 will be my tools of trade for today's main dinner course.
My wife picked up a slab of spares and some chops yesterday, and it justy so happens I was wanting to try out my Cherry Mediterranean Pork Rub on another good smoke with spares. I had already tried the rub on grilled chops, but found it doesn't handle the heat very well and charrs too easily. I also tried a cherry based rub on bone-in skin-on grilled chicken thighs last night, and found the same issue was a repeat, so this could very well be a rub that's a no-go for the grill, but it's great for the low & slow cooking in a smoker.
That said, let's get to some pork, rub and smoke, shall we?
I made up another fresh batch of rub for this smoke, while I was doing some tending on another smoke in my ECB (modded Gourmet) and uploading pics, so I measured everything quickly and got started preparing the rub per my instructions in the Wiki for Cherry Rub, and about 10 minutes later the grind was complete and ready for some meat.
Whole dried tart cherries, and, in clockwise orientation from the left, minced garlic, peppercorn, sweet basil leaves, oregano, rosemary, paprika, kosher salt:
Bone-side of untrimmed spares...flap meat was already removed when I opened the package (?), so no chef snackin' later at mid smoke...( )...( ):
1st rub application:
Meat-side of spares:
Into the Smoke Vault 24, with a small handful of cherry smoke wood slivers, burner on high, and the door open awaiting the smoke to begin:
After the smoke started I closed the door and turned the burner to low. Temps came up to 130* for the first 20 minutes and when that lovely cherry smoke aroma begin to diminish, I opened the door back up and cranked the flame to high again for a couple minutes until the cast iron smoke tray was hot enough to generate some smoke again. I Close it up for last time and adjusted the chamber temp to 150* for the next 15 minutes, then pulled it up to 225* to drive it all home. At 1-hr, 20-min, I added another small handful of cherry slivers, as a quick peek indicated the remains were fully charred, but no ashes in the pan, so a nice smoke has been permeating my ribs.
Just into the SV24:
More to follow, including my glaze recipe. I must either be crazy, or shooting from the hip again, 'cause the galaze recipe isn't not even in writing yet...I just now thought of the idea about 1-hr, 45-min into this smoke...I began to wonder what else I could do to top of the ribs for a total cherry flavored explosion, and now, I know!
OK, I had some time to think about the glaze...I'll keep it simple:
1 cup water
3 Tbls minced and ground tart cherries
2 Tbls light brown sugar
Heat on low until pot is hot to touch after wisking the ingredients to mix well.
Simmer uncovered while wisking occassionally until reduced to desired thickness.
Here ya go:
This will likely be a warm/hot/foiled/hot smoke of 0.75/3.5/1/1, and I'm just touching the 4-hr mark right now, so hold on to yer ponies!
I'm posting this q-view in progress due to pic upload issues with both threads I'm trying to feed today, so, the chops and finish will be later.
Thanks for peeking at my very cherry rib & chop smoke! Back with more ASAP, my computer willing.
Edited by forluvofsmoke - 4/26/12 at 8:35pm