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My first 321, and a couple of questions.

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
.. First let me apologize for no pictures.icon_redface.gif Even though they could be better, they were gone too quickly.

Brinkman gourmet electric smoker (added thermometer to door)
Cast iron wood chip box
Trutemp, probe thermometer
Mesquite chips
Two pork rib racks
Heavy duty foil

I had two racks of pork ribs. The brinkman stayed steady at 210. On the 3, the meat ended up at 165 or so. I wrapped it, splashed in some cider and at the end of 2 it hit 178. I took it easy on the 1, our guests were late cool.gif, so it sat in foil until 145 or so..

Here is my self crit of the smoke.
The ribs were very tender, but not fall off the bone. I would call them, 'peel off the bone' icon_rolleyes.gif , which is a lot better than chew off the bone, but neither are good enough. The meat did not recede up the bone during the 3.

I also think, I made a mistake when I put cider in the pan but I am not sure. A lot of the fat in the meat did not really melt out or turn to juice. It was kinda like butter in the end. I wonder if this was due to the moisture in the pan.

The color of the outside of the meat did not gain a nice smokey caramel coloring. It stayed brown, red'ish. The temp was high enough, but it just did not look as done, with a nice skin as I would have liked.

My chips burned up too quickly. I think this attributed to the poor coloring of the ribs. Next time I will soak them or raize the chip box. Perhaps I will try chunks instead of chips.

All in all, these were some of my best ribs sofar. After tuning my smoke a bit more I think I will have a rib worth a picture for you guys.

All the best,
post #2 of 18
were they spares or baby backs? makes a difference. should run the smoker at 225-240°. don't worry about meat temp with ribs. too easy to hit a bone with the probe. spares 3-2-1 style, smoker running 225-240° should be fall off the bone tender. babybacks i think is 2-2-1 or so. i always do spares- cheaper and more meat.
post #3 of 18
Like Chris said, run the temps up to 225 to 240 range. With 3-2-1 it is a guide line for cooking at 225 degrees.

Also, if you really want fall off the bone, leave them in the foil longer.........they will fall off.
post #4 of 18
I've found the color of the ribs can be affected by the ingredients in your rub. Jeff's rub always give the rib bark a nice color.
post #5 of 18
As far as the color goes I found that if you don't add any sauce near the end if the smoke you won't really get that caramel coloring. I usually don't use any sauce on mine and when they're done they are also brownish in color. I think it's the sugar in the sauce that causes the carmelation. When I use the 3-2-1 method I never had they not pullback off the bone. Hey as long as they tatsed good that's all that matters. Just stick around and see what the others here do and try a little of this, and a little of that. You'll find what you want. Just wait'll next time. that's what I always say.
post #6 of 18
If you think they were the best you've done so far, I don't see a problem. I personally like some chew on my ribs.
post #7 of 18
My recommendation goes with chris and fatback. Bump the temp to 225-250*. Ribs really wont "pull back" much at low temps (from other examples I've personally seen).

These were done at 230-240*. They show a good example of the "pull back". That's what you're looking for. Keep trying! Thing about smoking, ya can always eat the results, good or bad! Good Luck on your endeavors and Keep Smokin!
post #8 of 18
Mob County,
I think Chris, and the others, have it right. The only thing I would add is to recommend chunks of wood as opposed to chips. In my smoker, the chips burn up too fast and produce more smoke than I really want. I really prefer the chunks. They burn slower, last longer and give me the "thin blue smoke" that I'm looking for. I understand your self critique. Sounds like you had some pretty good ribs but you're looking for sensational. That's one of the things that keeps us all in the game. I keep a log of all my smokes times, temp, weather, recipe etc. And one of the most important entries in the log is my self critique. (It often differs from my guests because of my self expectation.)
Anyway, sounds like you're on the right track to those "sensational" ribs. Good luck!
post #9 of 18
Excellent point on the chunks!
post #10 of 18
I generally smoke at about 250 and have to modify the 3-2-1 method to more like 2 1/2- 3/4-3/4 if I go any longer in the foil they seem to be fall off the bone which I don't want. It also depends on the ribs. I have cooked 18 slabs at once and they all cook a little different depending on the thickness. I am trying to learn not to go by times so much as rather go by look, feel, bend etc...
post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
Spares icon_mrgreen.gif

Good note, I have a lot of 'red' in my rub.

Ahh, my rub is pretty low on sugar. I like the taste, so I'll experiment with a little more to try to help the carmelizing.

Beautiful ribs!! Simply amazing.. I'll bump my temp. I think I' need to devize a way to get the Brinkman smoker I have to hold a little more heat.

Chunks! I saw them at home depot and I will add them to my arsenal right away.. Thanks! I also love the idea of a log. I need to get past trying to 'remember' how I did the good ones.. Thanks for the tip!

Someday I hope to be able to judge the perfect rib by your method PDT_Armataz_01_12.gif .

Thanks for all of the help. I know it would have been a lot of smokes to get to these conclusions on my own. I'm looking forward to posting my next results with some real pictures this time.

post #12 of 18
Bend is easy, grab them about in the middle, when they point at your feet they are done, if they stick out straight, they aren't.

post #13 of 18
THAT's what I'm talking about ..

Hope to have some similar pics this weekend!


post #14 of 18
here's another view of a pullback.......tho these are spares.....

they was cooked 245-250

post #15 of 18
well all of our ribs look a lot different & prolly a different texture- it's just what YOU (or your guests/customers) like-i doubt you are going wrong. personally i get plenty of smoke flavor using hickory/maply/mesquite but once i wrap i just lightly sprits- not splash- and i wrap w/ less pull back(1/2"-1")@ around 225-250. here's a couple pics of mine.(i like a nice hammy color & texture to the meat-

post #16 of 18
I know I am repeating all that you have been told. And most, if not all, has been explained to you by far more experienced persons than I.

Forget about the heat of the meat (nice rhyme huh?) on ribs. Smoke at 230-245 and let the meat talk to you.

And let me tell you this, from experience, throw the "chips" out with the trash. Use chunks or real logs. Chips burn too quickly to ever get a good smoke ring, and you can never time them correctly.

But, if they are the best you have done, than they are pretty good...right? enjoy and keep trying. And keep coming to this forum. I learn something every time I come here. Enjoy!!!!
post #17 of 18
I am going to reply to this even though I do not feel I am "rib" talented enough to share what I feel is the way to smoke ribs..... (shudder.....)

I have quite a bit of smoke time under my belt, but my knowledge base has been built on sausage and jerky. Early this summer I found this site and it has changed my life style - literally ( I use to smoke in the winter, now it is about every weekend. Chores are not getting done around home) (P.S. It can not be that bad, my wife is not complaiinig !!!).

What I see when smoking ribs 3-2-1 is the 3 is a guideline, before putting the ribs into foil, wait till the meat has the pull back you are looking for has been obtained, then foil and carry on with the 2-1.

I have made quite a bit of ribs this summer to find this out, all has been good. But it just keeps geting better. God I love this site !!!
post #18 of 18
i have a charchol smoker.........so can't do the log thing.........

i have used chips and chunks for years............

look up some of my posted meat pics...........i get GREAT smoke ring.........

before i found this site.........and the butts and briskets........most of MY smoking experience IS ribs........i will put my smoke ring and ribs up against anyones.........thats how sure i am of em

maybe smokebuzz will come along and add his experience.........he has won several rib competions

i do just fine with chips and chunks.........use and do what werks for YOU.......

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