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Epic FAIL(S) with BBs on PBC

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  • FishTalesNC
    Club Member
    • Dec 2017
    • 1179
    • Durham, NC

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    Epic FAIL(S) with BBs on PBC

    If there's one thing I've cooked far more than anything else in my short time smoking meat, its baby backs. And yet what a humbling experience today's cook was!

    I had 3 racks total, the plan was for two of them to get a hoisin glaze (these just got a SPOG rub) and the other rack to get my usual 3-layer salt/heat/sweet rub and go Memphis style. Both methods were requests from SWMBO. The first time I EVER tried something other than burgers, hot dogs or chicken was when I tried Weber's Hoisin Glazed Ribs recipe on my 22" kettle. The glaze was amazing, the ribs were not ready and were chewy, but my wife just loved the flavor and I haven't done it since, so... that was the goal - cooking for her tastes today.

    At 5pm yesterday evening my kiddo helped me get the rubs on. This was the result around 7:45am (we used a mustard binder):

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    I lit the PBC this morning just before 7:30am and had the ribs on at 8am. PBC temps were between 285F to 250F for this portion of the cook.

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    Now, last rack I did was the first time I ever wrapped ribs and they turned out REALLY good (inspired by Heath Riles's method for his competition ribs). Much more juicy and tender, but still had a tug to them. So lets do that again with all three racks! Thinking I'm smarter than the average bear, I decided I'd prep the foil for the wrapping a la Henrik (ingredients on the foil, meaty side goes down) and preheat the oven to 250F. I figured it was easier to just move them in there during this phase and planned to hang them back on the PBC for the finish to firm up the bark, etc. All three ready to go, two with some squeeze butter (yes, I had to try it) and hoisin glaze, one with squeeze butter, brown sugar and honey:

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    After 2h15m on the PBC, I decided they were ready to be wrapped. Hmm... this is the first time I've noticed THAT much char on those bottom ribs closest to the charcoal basket. (cue the dark foreboding music) No worries, sacrificial end ribs, it was a worthy cause.

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    So I took them off, left the hooks in since I'm hanging them again soon, double wrapped them really good with the hooks poking out the top, and let them roll in the oven for an hour... just like last time... right? Well, here's where things really started going all cattywampus on me. With the first rack I'm pulling out of the oven the hook gets caught on the oven rack tearing the foil, sending baby back goodness all over SWMBO's oven. Dear lord in heaven, her anniversary gift just got more expensive! Made sure that didn't happen on the other two, but the damage was done. I unwrap them all, and man they are tender... more tender than I expected, heck I think they're ready. What the heck?? I applied hoisin glaze front and back to those two racks, and the other rack got more heat & sweet layers:

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    OK, so now SWMBO has a towel wrapped around her freshly washed hair and is wiping out her oven while I get these back on the PBC, and as far as I know I'm not sleeping on the couch tonight. Lets do this... pick up the first rack, hang it, reach for the second and I hear the *thud*. Yep - 3/4 of that first rack is now in my charcoal basket at the bottom of the PBC. Its like that first scratch on a new car - it had to happen some time! Grab some tongs and pull it out. Remove both rebar, grab the PBC grate and get it in place, remove the other two hooks, and get all 3 of them on the grate. Rebar out, higher temps are fine, I just want the glaze to caramelize a bit and the bark to firm up. Did I mention how charred the bottoms got this time???

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    I let this roll for about 10 min, then had to use tongs to grab them lengthwise and lift them out of the PBC to keep them from breaking in half. Got them inside, glazed once more and sprinkled with sesame seeds.

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    Now, they weren't mushy, but they were fall of the bone tender. Lo and behold SWMBO and my kiddo LOVED them. I'm sitting there on a beautiful NC day on our screened in porch feeling like a complete moron wondering how things went SO wrong, and they are just devouring the stuff. Who knew? I know most folks here prefer "competition" style with more of a bite... I prefer them a bit more of what I think of as "tug off the bone"... and these ribs were neither, I thought they were just OK. I can't decide if my family loving them means I lucked out today, or if I'm doomed to making fall of the bone ribs in the future.

    Possible FUBAR points of my cook I'm still pondering:
    • Perhaps the PBC temps weren't accurate. My thermometer probe wouldn't cooperate and ended up sorta hanging off to one side. I know fzxdoc uses two ambient probes in her PBC and notes the temps vary greatly and shift from one side to the other during longer cooks.
    • I've seen wood chunks flame up in the PBC charcoal basket. I used two chunks, and I'm wondering if they contributed to the overly charred ends on the bottom. Just don't get it, didn't happen on previous cooks.
    • Perhaps my indoor oven temps were too high and/or not accurate. This could explain how they got so crazy tender during that hour. I wrapped tightly. If I wrap again, I think I'll cut the time down to 30 min or so.
    • I've since decided that the hook that got caught when taking that rack out of the oven led to that rack falling off the hook after it was re-hung. Didn't consider it at the time, but I think that pulling action did more than just rip the foil.


    So yeah... humbling cook today. Time to sacrifice to the PBC gods maybe. Or see if I can manage burgers. Or stick to the microwave. Or cold cereal.
  • Sweaty Paul
    Founding Member
    • Aug 2014
    • 1440
    • Hays, KS
    • Green Mountain Grill - Jim Bowie
      (I've never regretted having too much grate space).

      Weber Genesis Gas grill
      Weber Kettle grills x 2

    #2
    A learning experience, however, it seems the intended audience loved them. Seems you have plans to rectify the situation in the future.

    Happy anniversary!

    Comment

    • smokin fool
      Club Member
      • Apr 2019
      • 1783
      • Mississauga, Ont

      #3
      I wrap my ribs all the time with brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and honey.
      Last time way too much brown sugar because of too much Mill Street 100th Meridian Lager= candied ribs.
      Needed a chain saw to cut some apart but like yours some turned out excellent.
      Lesson learned....maybe....

      Comment


      • adamcoe
        adamcoe commented
        Editing a comment
        Can never have too much 100th
    • fzxdoc
      Founding Member
      • Jul 2014
      • 5087
      • My toys:
        Weber Summit Charcoal Grilling Center (WSCGC) aka Mr. Fancypants
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      #4
      Those ribs don't look like a fail at all, FishTalesNC . They look great. And it sounds as though you pleased your audience with some tasty ribs, and that's what it's all about. I remember Henrik saying that his smoke/foil/oven/smoke method led to fall-off-the-bone ribs, or at least ribs with very little tug. So maybe you did everything just right for that method.

      Since you probably put your finger exactly on the cause of that one rack failing to defy gravity (hook caught on oven rack pulled some of the the meat away from the bone at the base of the hook), you can chalk that up to a good lesson learned--or your wife will remind you if you haven't.

      I've never used this method with the foil, liquid butter, etc. step but it sure makes sense not to hang ribs that have essentially braised for an hour in an oven back in the PBC. The meat could just be tooooo tender, I would guess. It follows the same reasoning I use for moving pork butts from the hooks to the grate once they hit 160° internal--once that fat starts to loosen up, things become more unpredictable as far as the hooks being able to hold the meat in place.

      Also, with ribs, pork butts, briskets, chuck roasts, etc. I always feel safer using Noah's double serial hook method with the meat so the weight is more distributed.

      As far as the sacrificial ribs at the bottom of the rack--maybe those racks were longer than the ones you usually get. Usually in my PBC the wood doesn't flame up as long as the lid is on--but it's always a good idea to position the wood away from the hanging meat.

      One thing it doesn't sound like is that your PBC's temp was off. Many folks, myself included, can get babybacks done in their PBC in 2.5 to 3.5 hours, and you cooked them a total of 3 hours 15 min before returning them to the PBC, so I'm not surprised that they were pretty close to done.

      Bottom line: I think you're being too hard on yourself. The only downside would be if your family prefers fall-of-the-bone ribs from here on out so that you'll never get your favorite tug-off-the-bone result again. If so, I'm sure you'll figure a way around that.

      Kathryn
      Last edited by fzxdoc; April 27, 2019, 04:05 PM.

      Comment

      • JimLinebarger
        Club Member
        • Jun 2017
        • 797
        • Spokane Valley, Wa.
        • Grills/Smokers
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          About me
          Name: Jim
          Nick name: Bear
          Location: Spokane Valley, Wa.
          Born at a very young age at Egland AFB, Ft. Walton Beach, FL.

          USAF vet, ECM (F4 & B52)/B52 Crew Chief, Computer Systems NCO, disabled
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          Campus Manager/Lead Tech/Tech (IT) for The Kemtah Group contracted to Intel, Rio Rancho, NM.
          Short Term Missionary to the Marshall Islands with MAPS of DFM of AOG

        #5
        I agree with fzxdoc, I don't see a fail. So, stuff fell off the hooks into the charcoal basket, just means you are a PBC owner. I have used that wrapping butter method and think I over cooked them because of it. The braise took them past done and the 30 caramelization made them well done. I'm not doing the 3-2-1 method anymore because of that. Maybe a 2-1-1. I do like a little tug on my ribs but they can still be great if they fall off the bone. Your's look tasty. I'd eat them. You done good.

        Comment

        • BRic
          Club Member
          • Mar 2017
          • 370
          • Winnipeg Mb. Canada
          • Napoleon bbq
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          #6
          I think you did a fantastic job , Your ribs look awesome . I think all of us had a rack of ribs fall into the charcoal basket . I had a
          rack fall into the basket on my second cook with the PBC . 3-2-1 is more meant for temps between 225 to 250 degrees f . I have done 2-1-1 and they turned out good. When i wrap my ribs , I double wrap , the key is to wrap as tight as you can without tearing the foil . You do not want your ribs to braise . I totally agree with fzxdoc and JimLinebarger .

          Happy Anniversary !

          Comment

          • FishTalesNC
            Club Member
            • Dec 2017
            • 1179
            • Durham, NC

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            #7
            Thx all, I think all of you are each right on. Things certainly didn’t go as PLANNED but I learn a heck of a lot more from this kind of experience!

            Comment

            • jfmorris
              Club Member
              • Nov 2017
              • 3035
              • Huntsville, Alabama
              • Jim Morris

                Cookers
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              #8
              I think that other than the mess you made in the oven, and the sacrifice to the charcoal basket, you had a great cook! The ribs look stellar to me, and I like a little char. The sesame seeds are a nice touch that I will have to try, along with that hoisin sauce.

              Comment


              • FishTalesNC
                FishTalesNC commented
                Editing a comment
                Weber’s recipe for the hoisin glaze is fantastic!
            • lemayp
              Club Member
              • Jan 2016
              • 210
              • Chesapeake Va
              • Weber Smokey Joe
                Weber 22" with Slow 'N Sear
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                Favorite Beer - Bells Two Hearted

              #9
              Looks good to me, lately I've cutting the racks in half to avoid any sacrificial ones hanging too close to the fire.

              Comment

              • FireMan
                Charter Member
                • Jul 2015
                • 7685
                • Bottom of Winnebago

                #10
                I think ya over thunk it. Who gives a rip how you feel how the cook went & the ambient temp of anything. Yer loved ones are the only thing that counts & they loved em & devoured em! That is what everbody who joins marvels at after a short while, the raves they get from the fam. That moron guy you talked about has to relax & have fun! It’s a PBC for cryin out loud, a WIB mochine! Eat & enjoy! 🕶

                Comment


                • FishTalesNC
                  FishTalesNC commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Even a blind squirrel finds a nut once in a while - I got lucky! Well, except for dousing the oven and hardwood floor in baby back juice. 😜
              • JeffJ
                Charter Member
                • Feb 2015
                • 2409
                • Michigan
                • Jeff

                #11
                I was expecting an unmitigated disaster and what I read was mostly success. I can count on that thing below my waist the number of PBC owners who have never had meat fall into the fire. I sure as heck have had that happen. At worst the ribs sound like they were slightly over cooked but were a crowd-pleaser regardless. Pork ribs are tricky because probe thermometers aren’t helpful and every slab is different. Last weekend I cooked 3 slabs of baby backs in my PBC and they took 6 hours. I was expecting 3-4 but they took 6 before passing the bend test.

                Comment


                • FireMan
                  FireMan commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I agree, that thing about fallin in the fire, it’s what they make a hose fer, washin em off.

                • FishTalesNC
                  FishTalesNC commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Great point about each piece being different. I know that, but didn’t consider it being a factor there!
              • RonB
                Club Member
                • Apr 2016
                • 12725
                • Near Richmond VA
                • Weber Performer Deluxe
                  SNS
                  Pizza insert
                  Rotisserie
                  Smokenator 1000
                  Cookshack Smokette Elite
                  2 Thermapens
                  Chefalarm
                  Dot
                  lots of probes.
                  CyberQ

                #12
                You can still have them both ways. Start your rack 30 min later then the rest. My wife likes FOtB ribs too.

                Comment


                • FishTalesNC
                  FishTalesNC commented
                  Editing a comment
                  I think if I liked them FOtB they’d like them with some bite. Convinced it’s how the universe works. 😂
              • Henrik
                Founding Member - Moderator Emeritus
                • Jul 2014
                • 4311
                • Stockholm, Sweden

                #13
                That doesn’t sound like a fail to me. I agree with the others here. Do a 2-1-1 instead, and put them back on the grates instead of hanging, and Bob’s your uncle!

                Comment

                • Hulagn1971
                  Charter Member
                  • Dec 2014
                  • 1017
                  • NC, The Triad
                  • WSM 22.5", Pitmaster IQ110, Weber 22.5" Kettle with SNS, Weber 14" Smokey Joe.

                  #14
                  You got me at "Beautiful NC Day".

                  Comment


                  • FishTalesNC
                    FishTalesNC commented
                    Editing a comment
                    Doesn’t get any more perfect than yesterday!

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                Napoleon's 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


                Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

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                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