Welcome!


This is a membership forum. As a guest, you can click around a bit. View 5 pages for free. If you would like to participate, please join.

[ Pitmaster Club Information | Join Now | Login | Contact Us ]

There are 4 page views remaining.

Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

is injecting large cuts of beef really useful?

Collapse
X
 
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

    is injecting large cuts of beef really useful?

    I belong to several BBQ groups on Facebook and Mewe, noticed some people are recommending injecting large cuts of beef and the first thing that comes to mind is, will most of it leak out as the meat heats up and the muscles start to contract? And since it is mostly liquid won't it also increase the stall since it adds more liquid which has to be heated sufficiently to allow it to cook out before the temperature will continue to rise? Since many people believe a lot of myths about cooking and refuse to accept any science that says other than what they believe I figured why not ask here instead of stirring up a food fight on those pages. .

    #2
    This is something started by the championship bbq teams and the sauces that they inject contain a mixture of chemicals. So injecting just a home broth may not be of any help. You can buy the injections they use but for home use why. I don't and find I do not miss it, there is plenty of subcutaneous fat in a brisket. Most BBQ joints don't do it either I believe, it is time consuming and must be done the night before. Instead I do a dryt brine overnight, 1/2 tsp per pound. Some find that a little much and use 1/3 tsp. See the section on dry brining in the free section.
    Last edited by mountainsmoker; May 17, 2020, 12:37 PM.

    Comment


      #3
      I have no science other than observation. Will it add to the stall? Yes, probably it will. Will a lot come out? Most definitely, but hopefully there will be more moisture left in it than if you do nothing.

      Personally I have never injected anything but brisket and chuck. I don't think it is necessary unless you are taking your meat past medium, and there are many cuts where you don't do that. I don't think ribs would be worth the trouble, and pork butt quite frankly doesn't need it.

      There will be some here that tell you they never inject and never have a problem. Some of those might wrap, which should also preserve moisture, but some probably do neither and they are still successful. I would think intramuscular fat would be a huge factor in the results of those not injecting.

      As with many things smoking, there are just so many variables that can affect your cook. YMMV as we often say.

      Comment


        #4
        MSG and tenderizers.

        I’ve done both. My opinion is, if your brisket is going to be good, it will be good either way. If it’s not going to be good, injecting it won’t make it good.


        I recently watched Aaron Franklin’s series on MasterClass. Of all the things he did, there was ONE thing that he did that stood out above everything else:

        He picked a beautiful piece of meat, vacuum packed and never frozen.

        If you can do one thing, do that. Start with a beautiful brisket.

        Comment


        • PBCDad
          PBCDad commented
          Editing a comment
          Mosca every once in a while I am tempted by the MasterClass thing. Is it worth it, and did you learn things that isn't available elsewhere such as this website? I do have an offset, not sure if that makes a difference for this class. Have you watched other classes? I'd be afraid of not having time to sit through everything, or no real new information.

        • Mosca
          Mosca commented
          Editing a comment
          PBCDad, Good question. The Aaron Franklin part is 100% offset woodburners. If you get just that, it is still a little expensive, but you get to keep it forever.

          I paid double, but got access to all of it for a year, plus gave a subscription to my daughter who is holed up in her apartment in Chile still. And I want to watch more stuff, like Penn and Teller. I’ve watched some of them, Alice Waters, and Gordon Ramsey. For me, being able to share put it over the edge. But mine will expire.

        • Mosca
          Mosca commented
          Editing a comment
          I did watch every minute of Franklin. He makes it look so easy, while at the same time letting you know that it isn’t, and that he, too, is sometimes just guessing, and that the only way to get good at making bbq is to make a lot of bbq.

        #5
        I'd rather live with a rabid skunk in my house than inject another brisket.

        Comment


        • Red Man
          Red Man commented
          Editing a comment
          Yikes 😳 🤣

        • Steve B
          Steve B commented
          Editing a comment
          Sooo What you’re saying is you really love injecting your briskets. 🤔 Point well taken. 😂

        #6
        Both salt and phosphates will hold moisture in the meat. Salt between the muscle fibers, phosphates inside the fibers themselves. Injecting was done well before competition BBQ. Butterball turkeys got their name with it. It DOES increase the stall, but it also helps keep moisture in and season the meat derp down inside. I always inject, and once you get it down it's not very time consuming at all. For big jobs I use my chops injector. Small ones get the old school hypo. All my injections contain salt, sugar, msg and broth or some kind. It branches out from there depending on the protein.

        Comment


          #7
          The interesting thing is that my technique for brisket is a combination of Aaron Franklin’s method and Meathead’s method and my own experience over time. Both of them, as Mosca said, advocate for choosing great meat first and foremost. My own experience is that the fat marbling in the big beef cuts .... brisket, chuck, tri-tip, short ribs ... that is what makes the difference. That and the overall meat quality.

          if you are competing, you should inject ... those various things you are injecting will give you 2% more needed to win.

          then again, the great Pitmasters of the old days never did any of this modern stuff and they are held in high esteem ... without injecting or dry brining or any of that stuff.

          My bottom line: choose good meat. Cook it conistently.

          Comment


          • ecowper
            ecowper commented
            Editing a comment
            Jerod Broussard my wife has agreed that I can build an old school pit as long as I build it so that it looks like a Hobbit hole .... that is going to happen one of these days :-)

          • Troutman
            Troutman commented
            Editing a comment
            So what about if your competing with yourself, does that mean I should inject ??

          • ecowper
            ecowper commented
            Editing a comment
            you should always do whatever it takes to beat yourself Troutman

          #8
          I like the insurance that injecting with a homemade low-salt beef broth and Butcher's BBQ phosphate (after dry-brining with kosher salt or a salt-containing rub) brings to the smoked brisket or smoked chuck roast party.

          I choose to inject with my own homemade broth and phosphate only (as opposed to phosphate-containing mixtures which also contain a lot of salt) so I know how much salt is going into the meat.

          I've done them on the PBC, kamado, or kettle/SnS modes and they always turn out nice. Occasionally one may come out more dry than others but that comes down to, I believe, choosing the best cut possible to start with.

          This is what Meathead says about injecting:
          Many competition cooks like to inject brisket with an internal marinade by using large hypodermics and other gimcracks. These "pumps" add moisture, break down tough fibers, and add flavor. Many of the champs have been injecting the meat with a product called Fab B Light or Butcher BBQ Brisket Marinade, both of which are moisturizers, tenderizers, and flavor enhancers....Some traditionalists think this is way too Barry Bonds and are repulsed by the idea. The results speak for themselves. They are winning. A lot. If you choose to inject and don't want all the chemicals, don't use anything that tastes very different from beef. Just use plain beef broth. In most recipes, I specify low sodium broth, but actually the saltier version is better in this case. It is like brining, and the salt helps retain moisture as well as enhance flavor. Insert the needle parallel to the grain so it doesn't leave tracks in the finished meat.



          Like Meathead, I don't inject from the top down as I see so many people do on You Tube. I slide the meat into a large plastic bag and inject with the grain from the side of the piece. Here's a rough diagram of the injection path.

          Click image for larger version  Name:	Diagram for injecting meat.JPG Views:	0 Size:	3.8 KB ID:	847906
          The large plastic bag and the horizontal injection path keep the injection liquid from accidentally squirting on the wall, ceiling, floor or me. After injecting, I pat-dry the meat off a bit, add more rub as necessary, and throw it on the smoker.

          Kathryn
          Last edited by fzxdoc; May 18, 2020, 06:31 AM.

          Comment


          • HawkerXP
            HawkerXP commented
            Editing a comment
            Ahhhhh. Thanks, I've made a mess a few times and just quit doing it. The bag will be tried.

          • texastweeter
            texastweeter commented
            Editing a comment
            plastic wrap works too. I inject before salting so it doesn't get knocked off. I too hit it in the side with the grain.

          • Troutman
            Troutman commented
            Editing a comment
            Pretty much agree with what you've said fzxdoc only I just throw a towel over it when injecting. I like the bag trick, I may try that as well. I've used Butcher's for years now. Does it make that big a difference, probably not but it does help that pesky flat to maintain some semblance of moisture.

          #9
          I’m totally old skool...I don’t inject. I also don’t compete.

          Up until a few years ago, I never even knew injecting was a thing. LOL I learned by trial & error...meat & fire.
          So without even knowing that people injected meat, it never occurred to me to even try.
          I found that choosing a quality meat was key...and try to keep the cooks as consistent as possible. Like Franklin, I much prefer a good piece of meat that hasn’t been frozen.

          I’ve since injected a couple times but always found it more trouble than it was worth.

          Comment


            #10
            If I am getting prime brisket or good marbeled Angus choice, and dry brining it, I think the meat is moist enough on its own due to the marbling, AND the dry brining gets salt to the middle of that hunk of meat, giving me most of the benefit of injecting without the hassle. I just don't see myself ever bothering to inject the meat. I had an injector kit years ago, and never used it, and its since been cleaned out of the pantry.

            Comment


              #11
              I was given an injecting "kit" years ago. I don't recall the brand but I never felt it added anything that made it worth the trouble. The injector took up space in a kitchen drawer until I did a spring cleaning and got rid of it.

              Comment


                #12
                I've "butter balled" turkey,never inject beef or pork.

                Comment


                  #13
                  I've never injected beef but after watching a BBQ competition many years ago I started injecting pork butts with a blend of sugar, salt, apple cider vinegar, and water plus a few drops of BBQ bitters and the results are quite good. I don't do this all the time and I get similar results with dry brining the pork butts.
                  Last edited by 58limited; May 19, 2020, 02:14 AM.

                  Comment


                  • Troutman
                    Troutman commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Try Kosmos Q's stuff, I really like it !!

                  #14
                  Wen I use foil I always have liquid in the foil when unwrapping briskets and butts, and that's with not injecting. So, to me, this means adding more liquid at the start will just make more come out, rendering it a useless endeavor. However I also appreciate JCGrill's point that maybe this means more will be left in it if you jam more in to start, dunno really. I do inject turkey breast.

                  Comment


                  • Troutman
                    Troutman commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I wold tend to disagree with your oversimplification of what injection is suppose to do. It's not some liquid just arbitrarily floating around in the meat matrix, but a mixture containing phosphates that do chemically adhere to the meat proteins and help hold moisture within. The degree to which that works may need to be demonstrated but I think it helps my flats. But hey, there's always pastrami for those flats !!!

                  • Huskee
                    Huskee commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Yes I oversimplified on purpose, I know the intent. Here though, never noticed a difference. Troutman

                  • Troutman
                    Troutman commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Yea sorry, just took off my professor cap and came to my senses. What's a brisket anyway ?

                  #15
                  It seems like a wasted effort on a cut of beef that is well marbled with plenty of collagen (brisket, chuck). On a real lean cut that you are only cooking to medium rare like a top round I can see it possibly having some benefit.

                  Comment

                  Announcement

                  Collapse
                  No announcement yet.
                  Working...
                  X
                  false
                  0
                  Guest
                  500
                  ["pitmaster-my-membership","login","join-pitmaster","lostpw","reset-password","special-offers","help","nojs","meat-ups","gifts","authaau-alpha","ebooklogin-start","alpha","start"]
                  false
                  false
                  {"count":0,"link":"/forum/announcements/","debug":""}
                  Yes
                  Rubs Promo
                  Meat-Up in Memphis