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Old 11-27-2004, 08:47 PM   #1
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Anyone Ever Brined, or Smoked, Prime Rib?

I've just had my second spectacular result from brining the Thanksgiving turkey: Last year, the brined bird, stuffed with quartered oranges, and roasted upside-down for the first three-quarters of the time, was so juicy that the first slice of breast meat produced a gusher of juice that over-flowed the cutting board "reservoir";

This year, a brined bird, bisected behind the breast (to fit my smoker), was placed breast-side-down and un-stuffed with one leg/thigh, on the top rack of a cylindrical water-smoker. The water pan was filled with a 50-50 mixture of water an apple juice, and the charcoal was liberally sprinkled with water-soaked apple wood chips. The bisected bird cooked far faster than expected, and while not as over-flowingly juicy as last year's, was of spectacular texture- and tenderness. The white meat carved like prime rib, and words simply cannot do justice to the flavor- and mouth-feel...we're still looking at one another and gushing about "...the turkey..." (insert Homer Simpsonesque drooling sounds). The only bummer...as in prior tries, is that smoking renders the skin tough- rather than tasty...oh, well...

But now to the topic: Since brining appears to work so well for fowl, has anyone had ane experience with brining meats such as prime rib?

And how about smoking prime rib (don't bother with pork...it transforms it to...HAM!)?

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Old 11-27-2004, 11:22 PM   #2
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Brining is done to add moisture to naturally lean meats such as chicken, turkey and certain cuts of pork.

Most any prime rib will be well-laced with intra-muscular fat as well as being surrounded by fat. So there's really no benefit to brining.
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Old 11-29-2004, 09:16 AM   #3
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I would agree with Andy. We smoke prime rib a good bit. It is execellent!


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Old 11-29-2004, 11:12 AM   #4
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Do my eyes mistake me, or do I see a pronounced "pink ring" just under the outer surface/crust on the prime? That's a sign of good BBQ!
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Old 11-29-2004, 11:25 AM   #5
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That indeed is a smoke a ring.
Check out this one on the brisket.

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Old 11-29-2004, 12:36 PM   #6
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Andy's right. No need to brine beef. It really doesn't work anyway, except for corning.
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Old 11-29-2004, 03:08 PM   #7
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Rainee - you're killin us with those pictures! Awesome, just awesome!
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Old 11-29-2004, 03:15 PM   #8
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Well, you're close enough you could get a chance to sample some.
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:40 PM   #9
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Thank you for the replies...and the photos

Re; Brining fowl: What are the leading /favorite theories on why brining works? It can't be osmosis, since that process tends to promote equal dilution on both sides of a water-permeable membrane; as a result, pure water would migrate from the side of the membrane with the "weaker" solution, toward the side with the "stronger" solution.

And I've only seen unsatisfactory explanations for the formation of what you've called the "smoke ring"; it's most pronounced on beef, but I've also produced it in turkey (although this time, using apple wood, the white meat only took on the slightest "golden-brown" coloration, while the outer 3/8-inch of the dark meat was tinted a wonderful mahogany red-brown).

Finally, for "Rainee", which wood(s) do you like best for smoking prime rib?

Thanks, Neil
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Old 11-29-2004, 05:49 PM   #10
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Rainee, I just might take you up on that! The mountains are calling to me!
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