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Meat-Up in Memphis

T-Shirts & More T-Shirts & More
Order men's and women's T-Shirts, Sweatshirts, Aprons, Mugs, Caps, Tote Bags, Flasks, and more, all imprinted with the Pitmaster Club logo. There's even a spiral bound journal where you can make notes on your cooks.

Cool Embroidered Shirt Cool Embroidered Shirt
This beautifully embroidered shirt is the same one Meathead wears in public and on TV. It's wash and wear and doesn't need ironing (really!), but it is a soft cottonlike feel. Choice of four colors and both men's and women's.

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BBQ Stars

SPOTLIGHT

Some Of Our Favorite
Tools And Toys

These are not ads. These are products we love and highly recommend. Click here to read more about our medals and what they mean.

 


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Surely you know somebody who loves outdoor cooking who deserves a gift for the holidays, birthday, anniversary, or just for being wonderful. There he is, right in the mirror! Here are our selections of best ideas, all Platinum or Gold Medalists, listed by price.

Click here to see our list of Gold Medal Gifts


Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here's A Great Buy!

maverick PT55 thermometer

A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!

Click here for more info on the Maverick PT-55 Waterproof Instant-Read Thermometer Review shown above. It may be the best value in a thermometer out there


If you have a Weber Kettle, you need the Slow 'N' Sear

slow n sear

The Slow 'N' Sear turns your grill into a first class smoker and also creates an extremely hot sear zone you can use to create steakhouse steaks.

Click here for our article on this breakthrough tool


Bring The Heat With Broil King Signet's Dual Tube Burners

the good one grill

The Broil King Signet 320 is a modestly priced, 3-burner gas grill that packs a lot of value and power under the hood. Broil King's proprietary, dual-tube burners get hot fast and are able to achieve high, searing temps that rival most comparatively priced gas grills. The quality cast aluminum housing carries a Limited Lifetime Warranty.

Click here to read our complete review


The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One

the good one grill

The Good-One Open Range is a charcoal grill with an offset smoke chamber attached. It is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker. The grill sits low in front and doubles as a firebox for the smoke chamber which is spliced on above and behind so it can work like a horizontal offset smoker only better. By placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side, Open Range produces even temperature from left to right, something almost impossible to achieve with a standard barrel shaped offset.

Click here to read our complete review


Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

Griddle And Deep Fryer All In One

The flat top does the burgers and the fryer does the fries. Use the griddle for bacon, eggs, and home fries. Or pancakes, fajitas, grilled cheese, you name it. Why stink up the house deep frying and spatter all over? Do your fried chicken and calamari outside. Blackstone's Rangetop Combo With Deep Fryer does it all. Plus it has a built in cutting board, garbage bag holder, and paper towel holder. An additional work table on the left side provides plenty of counter space.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order


Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker

The Pit Barrel Cooker May Be Too Easy

The PBC has a rabid cult following for good reason. It is absolutely positively without a doubt the best bargain on a smoker in the world. Period. This baby will cook circles around the cheap offset sideways barrel smokers in the hardware stores because temperature control is so much easier. Best of all, it is only 9 delivered to your door!

Click here to read our detailed review and the raves from people who own them


The Swiss Army Knife Of Thermometers

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The smart folks at ThermoWorks have finally done it: The Swiss Army Knife of thermometers, two in one. Start with the industry standard food thermometer, the Thermapen MK4, (Platinum Medal winner) truly instant (2 to 3 seconds) precise (+ or – 0.7°F). Then they built in an infrared thermometer ideal for measuring the temps of pizza stones, griddles, and frying pans (also great for finding leaks around doors and windows in your house).

Click here to read our test results and comprehensive review and why it won our Platinum Medal.


Compact Powerful Sear Machine For Your Next Tailgater

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Char-Broil's Grill2Go x200 is a super-portable, fun little sizzler made of heavy, rust-proof cast aluminum. The lid snaps shut. Grab the handle and you're off to the party! Char-Broil's TRU-Infrared design produces searing heat while reducing fuel consumption. A 16 ounce LP gas canister is enough to keep you flipping burgers for hours.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order


The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted

NK-22-Ck Grill

Their NK22CK-C Charcoal Kettle Grill puts a few spins on the familiar kettle design. In fact, the hinged lid with a handle on the front, spins in a rotary motion 180 degrees. It's hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make the NK22CK-C a viable alternative.

Click here for more about what makes this grill special


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G&F Suede Welder's Gloves

Heat Resistant Gloves With Extra Long Sleeves Hold The Hot Stuff

If you're using oven mitts at the grill, it's time to trade up. Say hello to these suede welder's gloves. They're heat resistant enough to handle hot grill grates, and flexible enough to handle tongs. The extra long sleeves even let you reach deep into the firebox to move hot logs without getting burned. Our Fave.

Click here to read our detailed review

Click here to order from Amazon


GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone

grill grates

GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, keep small foods from committing suicide, kill hotspots, are easier to clean, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily removed and moved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke to whatever is above. Every gas grill needs them.

Click here for more about what makes these grates so special


kareubequ bbq smoker

Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.

Click here for our review of this superb smoker


Masterbuilt MPS 340/G ThermoTemp XL Propane Smoker

masterbuilt gas smoker

The First Propane Smoker With A Thermostat Makes This Baby Foolproof

Set ThermoTemp's dial from 175° to 350°F and the thermostat inside will adjust the burner just like an indoor kitchen oven. All you need to do is add wood to the tray above the burner to start smokin'.

Click here to read our detailed review


Professional Steakhouse Knife Set

masterbuilt gas smoker

Our founder, Meathead, wanted the same steak knives used by steakhouses such as Peter Luger, Smith & Wollensky, Morton's, Kobe Club, Palm, and many others. So he located the manufacturer and had them stamp our name on some. They boast pointed, temper-ground, serrated, high-carbon stainless-steel, half-tang blades with excellent cutting edge ability. The beefy hardwood handle provides a comfortable grip secured by three hefty rivets. He has machine washed his more than 100 times. They have never rusted and they stay shiny without polishing. Please note that we do not make, sell, or distribute these knives, they just engrave them with our name.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order


PK 360 grill

Is This Superb Charcoal Grill A Kamado Killer?

The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it's easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado. Beautifully designed and completely portable. Meathead says it is his preferrred grill.

Click here to read our detailed review of the PK 360

Click here to order it direct from PK and get a special deal for AmazingRibs.com readers only


Fireboard: The Ultimate Top Of The Line BBQ Thermometer

fireboard bbq thermometer

With the ability to monitor up to six temperatures simultaneously with either Bluetooth or Wifi on your mobile phone, tablet, or computer, Fireboard is the best digital thermometer we’ve tested.

Click here to read our detailed review


Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

Green Mountain Davey Crockett Grill

Green Mountain's portable Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker is one mean tailgating and picnic machine. But it's also gaining popularity with people who want to add a small, set it and forget it pellet smoker to their backyard arsenal. And with their WiFi capabilities you can control and monitor Davy Crocket from your smart phone or laptop.

Click here to read our detailed review and to order

Announcement

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Meat-Up in Memphis 2020

Join us in Memphis for our Meat-Up! Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis2020)
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Brisket Packers/Cutters Must be Sharing Their Unfair Butchering Tricks with Each Other

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  • Top | #1

    Brisket Packers/Cutters Must be Sharing Their Unfair Butchering Tricks with Each Other

    I have noticed a few Costco packers where the butcher/cutter was aware that we pitmasters like thick flats.
    To make thin flats look thicker while hidden there in the cryovac bag, they have devised some ways to fool us.
    -
    In looking at the common packer brisket, I am aware that one side of the flat will be quite a bit thicker than the other.
    This is actually normal, and when sorting though packers at the store, I am looking for that thin side to be over 1" thick.
    On another note...
    I also want the flat to stop at the right place, and not get into the plate. (See Attached Photo)
    If the butcher/cutter cheats and gets into the thinner plate area, that packer will be unusually long.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Beef Cuts.png Views:	1 Size:	23.4 KB ID:	632919

    The next "cheat" is that these cutters are TOTALLY aware that us beef brisket smokers like thick flats.
    Fact is, they don't dry out near as bad.
    So... they either fold over or "scrunch" an extra area of meat together to make the flat appear thicker than it actually is.
    -
    Here below are three packers that have had "Trick" cuts added to scrunch in meat or fold it over to make the flat look thicker... yes, they are fooling us.

    Click image for larger version  Name:	Extra Special.jpg Views:	1 Size:	1.42 MB ID:	632916Click image for larger version  Name:	Another.jpg Views:	1 Size:	1.85 MB ID:	632917
    Click image for larger version  Name:	Yet Another.jpg Views:	1 Size:	1.98 MB ID:	632918Click image for larger version  Name:	Folded.jpg Views:	1 Size:	2.03 MB ID:	632920

    To me, this practice is JUST WRONG, and down right deceitful.
    NOW I find the same practice at my new supplier from a totally different processing plant.
    This makes me think that these tricks are being passed around and shared.

    -
    So...
    You might want to look very carefully at that next packer in the cryovac.
    Try to look for a fold or extra meat scrunched up through the plastic bag.
    If the flat in a ways from the edge is thinner than the corners, take a closer look for scrunched up meat or a folded over flap.
    -
    I really don't know how to combat this other than to examine the meat more closely BEFORE I buy it.
    AND, of course share this new found knowledge with you all... my fellow pitmasters.

  • Top | #2
    They must have learnt that trick from Argentine carnicero's . Happens here all the time they try and sell the plate as a flat.

    Comment


    • BBQ_Bill
      BBQ_Bill commented
      Editing a comment
      Ah... so these tricks are even down South. Sad, but true.

  • Top | #3
    IMHO it isn't just brisket that methods to make the product appear better than it really is. I've noticed on many of our grocery store purchases of steak and even poultry that they look awesome on the shiny side but once removed from packaging you wonder why the heck did I buy this crap. Costs more to do so but we have started to buy more and more of our meat out of the display cases and ask to look at the product closer before agreeing to purchase it rather than the grab and go cases. Who would have ever thought you needed to treat a meat purchase like buying a used vehicle.

    Comment


    • BBQ_Bill
      BBQ_Bill commented
      Editing a comment
      It takes more time, but the meat manager is opening the cases for me, and allowing me to go through the packers, choosing the ones I want to buy. I just need to look even closer now.

  • Top | #4
    I don't like the practice either, but I do consider it normal - and not just with food. Used cars are polished up to look as good as possible even though they may be junk. And other items are also presented from their best angle.

    It's just normal "buyers beware"...

    Comment


    • Fire Art
      Fire Art commented
      Editing a comment
      That’s how I caught my wife

    • BBQ_Bill
      BBQ_Bill commented
      Editing a comment
      Now that I am "Aware", I am going to "Beware"

  • Top | #5
    This stuff is truly getting worse in my experience as well. Caveat emptor, I guess🤨!

    Comment


    • BBQ_Bill
      BBQ_Bill commented
      Editing a comment
      Agreed. Forewarned, aware, and ready to inspect the merchandise with more knowledge.

  • Top | #6
    Nefariousness indeed!

    Comment


    • Top | #7
      I rarely see that in the HEB and Costco briskets, not saying they don't source ones that have that, I've just never run across it. Like everyone else I go for less decale fat, flexibility and as thick of a flat end as I can find. Since I'm generally disappointed with the overall thinness after looking through a dozen packers, I've just adopted the practice of loping off the front of the flat to achieve a nice thick end, and corn the rest or grind into burger meat. Otherwise it turns into frustration and dog meat.

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        I am on the same page as I lop off quite a bit of thin flat meat, and when done trimming all of the packers, all usable trimmed meat gets vacuum bagged, dated, flash cooled, and then deep frozen for other uses, like crock pot meat.

      • Polarbear777
        Polarbear777 commented
        Editing a comment
        I trim that end too for burgers etc. it ends up dry and it doesn’t fit in the pk unless I trim.

        Win win I guess.

    • Top | #8
      I'm much more interested in the point,as that's the part I prefer. The flats okay,but fat equals flavor!

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        Depending on the breed, and what they eat during the time in the feed lot before "harvest" that fat flavor can be okay or even pretty good all the way to exquisite and unearthly.
        THIS is why I switched to CAB. The fatty/prime "milk cow" briskets were "getting to me".

    • Top | #9
      Butcher's have been doing such things forever -- trimming fat on the side of a steak on an angle and putting the thicker side down; leaving a big hunk of fat in the middle of a tied pot roast; etc.

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        More tricks! I'm sure I have seen the fat on the steak edge thing before. The tied roast with the hidden surprise is another one that you might fix with friendship? I figure take some great smoked meat to your butcher and they will be more likely to take care of you right. When in doubt on the steaks, maybe just ask for a fresh "thick" cut, and then ask to look at it.

    • Top | #10
      It's just like how they package bacon.

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        True that!
        I tear the package just enough to see the "real deal".

    • Top | #11
      Or pour colored water into the meat grinder to help it grind better...but the water never comes out.

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        Yeah, until you cook it and the pan is suddenly full of bubbling water!
        DEFINITELY seen that!

    • Top | #12
      Originally posted by bten View Post
      Or pour colored water into the meat grinder to help it grind better...but the water never comes out.
      I guess someone will need to educate me as I don't have a clue what colored water is. As far as using something to help grind the meat better, place any parts of your grinder that the meat travels through in the freezer prior to grinding and then do what you can to keep it cold during the grind. Here is an example of what can be used to do this. https://www.cabelas.com/product/cabe...ref=prd2122105
      It stops the binding much more than you may think.

      Comment


      • BBQ_Bill
        BBQ_Bill commented
        Editing a comment
        Wow! THIS is some GREAT news that I can use in the future! NEVER knew this Good Trick. Thanks for sharing!

      • bten
        bten commented
        Editing a comment
        It is something that the butchers at the grocery stores do. Then they sell you the water in the meat. Often it is dyed to make the meat look better.

      • Backroadmeats
        Backroadmeats commented
        Editing a comment
        The meat or grinder being cold helps.. but more often than not you need to draw the knife tighter against the grinder plate. Especially on a fine grind,. Just make sure you keep meat on the knife and grinder plate or your knife will be junk..you can't get it to tight for a fine grind..

    • Top | #13
      Keeping the grinder and meat cold will also help prevent bacteria from getting worked up (and woke up) during processing. There are a lot of moving parts and friction in meat processing machines (patty machines are probably the worst). The heat created can cause bacteria to activate that can cause anything from discoloration to an off taste--though I never heard of anything dangerous transpiring.

      I worked in a couple sausage kitchens a long time ago, and this is how it was explained to me. One place had a big, walk in freezer, and we'd put meat lugs in it for about 45 minutes prior to grinding. The other was a smaller operation, and we'd grind some ice (no coloration added) along with the meat as it passed through the grinder.

      Comment


      • Top | #14
        Huh. I have never seen this in the packers I have bought. One thing that bothers me, however, is when a packer has really thin flat. I just wish they could give us one with a 1 inch uniform flat. Man that would be nice! Let's get those genetics up to my liking. LOL.

        Comment


        • BBQ_Bill
          BBQ_Bill commented
          Editing a comment
          On a larger animal, if they cut the flat off where they are supposed to, you will generally get that 1" or thicker flat. It's when they cheat out past the 6th rib and get into the plate, it is too thin.

      • Top | #15
        Spinaker Considering this issue from a business perspective, using something I can price evenly..., even though it's the high end of the spectrum:

        SRF Wagyu Gold:
        Strip Loin: 14 lbs/$539 = $38.50/lbs
        4 bone prime rib:~10lbs/$449 = $44.90/lbs
        3 bone prime rib: ~8 lbs/$399 = $49.88/lbs
        Whole Tenderloin: 5 lbs/$299 = $60/lbs
        Brisket: 9-12 lbs/$189 = $18/lbs
        Brisket: 18-20 lbs/$239 = $12.5/lbs
        A cow has two strip loins, two briskets, two 4 bone prime ribs and two 3 bone prime ribs (7 ribs to a ribeye primal, one assumes an economy), and two tenderloins.

        If you're going to the expense of raising a beef cow, you have to be vaguely insane to work on optimizing the brisket, shoulders and belly over the nonworking muscles of the back. The whole of the cow minus the the "steakhouse cuts" just isn't economical to optimize. Maybe the sirloin if you're in Brazil or in 90's America when folks were more fat phobic than today.

        TLR: No cattle rancher is ever going to optimize brisket genetics at the expense of any other part of the beev until brisket pulls steakhouse money, at which point every one will cook chuckies, plate ribs and other cuts that provide value for knowhow. On the upside, since briskets are beyond your average pitmaster, they will never be as expensive as steakhouse cuts.

        Comment


        • Spinaker
          Spinaker commented
          Editing a comment
          Hahaha, I hear yea. I was being pretty tongue and cheek there. I sell in to the slaughter industry. I am well aware that brisket is an after thought. LOL.
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