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Question about rub on butts with mustard

Discussion in 'Pork' started by scvinegarpepper, Feb 22, 2011.

  1. I'm doing a case of butts this weekend for an engagement party. I've done countless butts in my day, and done one competition (2nd place in amateur!) but am thinking about trying something new this time. At least on half of the butts. In the past, I never rub with anything other than maybe some salt. I do this primarily because I finish mine with a vinegar-pepper sauce (more like a gravy), typical of most pulled pork in South Carolina, i.e., all of my flavor comes from the smoke and the sauce. But I am thinking of doing a rub this time, mainly just to try something new but also to get some better bark. However, I don't want whatever I put on the butt prior to smoking to interfere with or overpower the sauce I toss it with once I pull it.

    Now most people say to rub it down with mustard first to help hold the rub on and produce better bark but that the mustard taste cooks out. But I want ZERO mustard flavor. If you know anything about barbecue in the south, you know that mustard and vinegar-pepper are two conflicting styles, ergo, I don't want any mustard flavor. So does all of the mustard flavor completely cook out?

    Also, is it absolutely necessary to apply the mustard before the rub? I also don't want to use a rub that's going to conflict with the vinegar-pepper gravy either. I guess what I am getting at here is while I would normally stick with what I know when cooking en masse like this, I kind of want to try something new but I don't want it to completely send the whole operation to hell in a hand basket. Thanks for any advice you gurus can offer.

  2. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Legendary Pitmaster Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    you can use any liquid really. I usually just apply the rub strait but if you want just use some olive oil and it will do the trick. 
  3. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I use just rub or SPOG.  saltpepperonoingarlic

    No mustard or anything!!

  4. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Any rub you use is going to alter the flavor of the butts wether it be sweet or savory. Which in turn will change the way the sauce taste.

     I use mustard , molasses and a touch of liquid crab boil on my butts before applying my rub. cant taste the mustard when done but you can taste the sweetness of the molasses and the zing from the LCB.

     No you do not have to use mustard.

     You can just rinse the butt and set it in a pan and apply the rub. The water will help the rub stick ,but not as good as the mustard.

      What you do we consider Carolina Q. lol, down south we like it sweet and spicey, Very little vinegar in the sauces around here.

      Maybe try doing  butts a couple of different ways and see how ya like em.
  5. richoso1

    richoso1 Legendary Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Brian has the same mind set as I do on this subject. It's all good my friend.
  6. les3176

    les3176 Master of the Pit

    I have used mustard many times and have not noticed any mustard flavor. It does really help hold the rub on.But what i like to do is wash and dry the pork and then put some apple juice in a spray bottle and the just mist the butt and then apply my rub. This also seems to work really good and the rub sticks well. I have tried olive oil once and reall don't care for it.
  7. rbranstner

    rbranstner Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I have used mustard, olive oil or just wash the butt and use the water to help hold the rub to the butt. They all turn out good and you don't notice any mustard flavor as I don't really like mustard.
  8. bamaboy

    bamaboy Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    I use olive oil about half the time on butts,but the other half i just wash and let dry for a few and rub it down and sit it the fridge overnight.I will use the mustard on ribs after clean and trim,then season and refridge.I personally have never tasted the mustard after its done.gives a nice bark and seems to hold moisture better
  9. I want you to know I despise mustard! However when I smoke a butt, I slather them with mustard! I then use lots of my homemade rub. I bought the recipe from Jeff at www.smokingmeat.com. The bbq recipe is nothing less than awesome as well!! It is SO worth the money!

    My friends ask me to make Q-sauce sauce for them because I won't give them the recipe or tell them where to buy it. A man's gotta do something to stay ahead of the competition - right! And I figure they won't see this post [​IMG]
  10. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm with Brian, and Rich.I've Never used the mustard.
  11. skully

    skully Meat Mopper

    I'd stay with what U know thats a sure thing and try the new approach for a lesser event or a weekend with the boys, be a shame for somethin to go wrong, My 2 cents for what its worth.......peace
  12. meateater

    meateater Legendary Pitmaster SMF Premier Member

    I've tried mustard a few time on butts but I use plochman's mustard, it doesn't have vinegar in it.
  13. I am a big fan of Carolina Q.When I make it I only use salt, pepper, crushed red pepper, and granulated garlic as a rub on the butts. Some times I inject it with one of my Carolina vinegar/pepper sauces. I have never used mustard on butts. I have used mustard on ribs and have never been able to taste mustard in the finished product. As stated in other posts the mustard does make the rub stick well and does give it a good bark. Be sure and post some Qviews as I would be very interested how it turns out for you.
  14. tyotrain

    tyotrain Master of the Pit

    I like my butt rubbed straight up [​IMG]
  15. rw willy

    rw willy Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I tried mustard once.  Didn't really notice any mustard taste.

    How about helping a northern smoker out with a vinegar-pepper sauce recipe?  Sure would be cool telling me friends that I have a low country finishing sauce.

  16. I think you're exactly right. I'm gonna stick with what I know and play it safe. Especially with some of these out-of-towners, I need to show off "real" barbecue. But I do want to try the mustard at some point. Maybe I'll just put one to the side and do it with mustard. Thanks for all the great info.

  17. Hmmmm...I dunno man...it took me years to get mine just the way I want it. But, I don't want to be completely stingy...I started with one gallon apple cider vinegar (don't use white vinegar), 1/4 c. each of salt, black pepper, crushed red pepper, and ground red pepper. That's your basic SOUTH Carolina V&P bbq gravy. From there you can add various things such as brown sugar, white sugar, butter, etc. to cut some of the bite from the vinegar. I also throw in some Texas Pete. NOT Tabasco. Hope I've pointed you in the right direction at least.
  18. Here is a version that my family uses:

    John's Traditional NC Pork BBQ Sauce

    Book: Haskett Family Favorites Cookbook
    Chapter: Brines, Rubs & Sauces

    This is my uncle, John W. Byrd, Jr.'s recipe.

    2 cups apple cider vinegar
    1 cup white vinegar
    1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
    2 teaspoons crushed red pepper
    1 teaspoon Lousiana Hot Sauce
    1 teaspoon salt
    1 teaspoon black pepper

    Combine ingredients in jar; Shake up good; Allow flavors to meld overnight.

    Use to season slow cooked pork, chopped or shredded pork butt.
  19. SmokinAl

    SmokinAl SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Didn't your Mama raise you up to share. What makes this place so great is that everyone shares their best recipes. I hope you reconsider & join the party.
    callahan4life likes this.
  20. rw willy

    rw willy Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Thanks SC,  I'll give her a try.  Sounds like the stuff I loved eating at Cherry Point MCAS when they had pig cooks.

    Thanks again