Salt and Sugar in Rubs: Yay or Nay?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by rrainstar, Dec 31, 2013.

  1. I would like to hear opinions about the roles of salt and sugar in rubs.Scientifically both of these things do wick moisture and I've heard tale of pitmasters and barbecue enthusiasts alike not using them in rubs for said reason. Personally, I use both in proportion to meat and I've never had any moisture problems or lack thereof. Has anyone else heard of this? Is there any one currently obtaining from using these ingredients in any of your rubs?
  2. qwikrnu bbq

    qwikrnu bbq Fire Starter

    Yup, I've heard of it. Do I still use salt and sugar?? Oh yeah! And a lot of it. There are many different ways to achieve the same end; great tasting protein. And several methods can be used to add / retain moisture. Brining, injection, marinating for example. I have studied Culinary Arts (Arts Institute, Novi Mi) aka "chef school". I had the privilege of working with some of the best chefs in any given cuisine (American Regional / World).  And I can tell you with 100 percent certainty, not one of them will hold back the salt, or a chance to introduce flavor into their dish.

     Chefs, pitmasters, and barbecue enthusiasts will all have their own methods that work for them. And I respect that. But I will stick to what I have learned, and what works for me.
  3. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Yes when you salt a piece of  meat the surface gets wet as the moisture is sucked out of the meat...BUT...With time the opposite happens. The salt and all that moisture goes back in. You just made a concentrate Brine! And we know brines add moisture, flavor, tenderizes and just generally improves the meat. So it is a fallacy that salt and sugar dries out meat. Just let it rest...JJ 
  4. Thanks for the feedback so far gang. I am of course very familiar with dry curing/ dry brining, I like to make fresh gravlax at home. I was hoping to hear some arguments against salt and sugar but then again it's hard to argue against flavor.
  5. skully

    skully Meat Mopper

    whats to argue, its how meats been preserved/cured for hundreds of years?

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