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Tuesday, November 8, 2011

UDS and Pork

As mentioned in another post, this past weekend, I was cooking at a gathering called a Brethren Bash. As it happens, these fools actually trusted me to organize the Bash last year and this. Amazingly, it happened again and I think it worked out great. One of the great plusses and a real surprise was the gift to me of a custom UDS (ugly drum smoker) with beautiful wood handles from AML Woodart. Marty at AML Woodart makes some beautiful handles for various Weber and BGE products, has is also a master wood worker who I will eventually hire to make me a custom cutting board base. But, for now, here is my new UDS.
It actually has my name carved into the top handle and the phrase Itadakimasu in the handles. Many younger Japanese and non-Japanese who have been taught stateside think this phrase means let's eat. It actually mean 'I humbly receive'. And I can tell you, I am humbled that they gave me one of these, I consider these UDS cookers to be amazing for smoking meats, especially briskets. And the UDS was already seasoned, so I was good to go. I was planning on cooking three racks of baby backs and 2 pounds of pork steaks, so, I had meat and a cooker. Let's take her for a run. I loaded about 3 pounds of charcoal into the basket, fired up the coals with a weedburner and let it settle. Every UDS is a little different, the first fews cooks can be problematic, this one locked in at 235F and ran there for 5 hours.

I was trying a new rub out, with a goal of ultimately leveraging this rub into a completely different dish. The rub mix is based upon the spicing of Islamic Chinese traditions, except I used pork, which means this is more Turkish Chinese ribs. I used a variety of spices, including:

allspice berries

whole black peppercorns
whole white peppercorns
5-Spice (yes, I am lazy)
fennel seeds
cumin seeds
coriander seeds
cinnamon stick
Harissa mix
Kosher salt

Toast and grind to a powder. Coat the ribs, wrap tightly and allow to sit for an hour. Then recoat with Santa Maria rub and a second coat of the Spice rub.

These went onto the top rack for 3 hours, then the pork steaks went on and another two hours passed. I decided to go with Simpy Marvelous Sweet and Spicy rub for the pork steaks. This is one of my favorite rubs for making good BBQ with pork. It is truly my go to product. The meats came off at the same time, looking like this.
There were, oddly, no cut rib shots. But, the rubs is really what I was looking for. Ultimately, the rub will be used on lamb ribs for a brasied and smoked dish. For proof of concept though, these ribs had a great balance, complex spicing and a real kick on the finish from the Harissa and white pepper. Both meats did not disappoint for the first run on my new smoker.

1 comment:

  1. That UDS is an awesome gift! I keep meaning to order a set of those handles for my two Eggs, I was impressed with close ups of his craftsmanship in pictures on the forum.