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Grill Talk => Weber Grill Forum (Grills, Accessories) => Topic started by: HankB on February 21, 2013, 03:10:55 PM

Title: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 21, 2013, 03:10:55 PM
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-q7y9pvbBtTk/USa2uTQYy9I/AAAAAAAAOlE/ddpjQN02WvE/s800/DSC_6178-PP.JPG)

(https://lh3.googleusercontent.com/-UlPpjgTzywQ/USa3Y73tu0I/AAAAAAAAOlM/7z2HehXPwVY/s800/DSC_6195-PP.JPG)
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: Duke on February 21, 2013, 03:31:33 PM
Nice setup Hank! Please share the finished product.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: 1buckie on February 21, 2013, 03:44:45 PM


Whatcha got goin' on there, Hank?

A Binkman with some meathooks?

That's not WSM, is it?


Grate idea, either way !!!!!!
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: Craig on February 21, 2013, 03:49:14 PM
Nice work!  :D  What did you use for the setup?
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 21, 2013, 04:48:18 PM
Whatcha got goin' on there, Hank?

A Binkman with some meathooks?
Brinkman? Blasphemy!  :o

There was considerable discussion about the Pit Barrel Cooker (PBC) at BBQ-Brethren and about how the food came out better. The PBC is a midi-UDS (Ugly Drum Smoker) whose chief feature is that meat is hung off hooks over the fire. I keep an open mind and decided to try to duplicate those conditions in a WSM. I have been thinking about how to fashion a support on which to hang meat that would extend into the dome on the WSM and take advantage of that space while providing a decent distance between meat and coals. Rube Goldberg would have been proud of my first thought experiments. Then I hit upon an idea that embodied simplicity itself. I bent 3/8" rebar into a trapezoidal shape and cut grooves in the ends that would fit over the tabs that support the top grate. I had planned to make two and notch then where they crossed in the middle to provide additional stability. This rack gives me 24" from the cross piece to the top of the charcoal ring.

Today when I stopped at Sam's in Batavia, they had baby back ribs marked down because they were approaching their 'sell by' date. I grabbed a package of three racks and finished the first bracket. When I fit it to my WSM, it felt surprisingly stable so I prepared my first cook with just the one.

A little over two hours in now and when I opened the cooker to check the ribs, one had separated and left about 2/3 of the rack laying on the coals.  >:( (Note to self, provide additional support for hanging meats.) At the moment the meat is starting to pull back from the bones but they are not yet done according to the bend test. Nor would I expect them to be with the cooker running about 300F.

There will be more pix to come when they come inside to rest. Right now it's dark outside and I prefer to keep the cooker closed.

As an aside, I grilled lamb chops with carrots, zucchini and potatoes for dinner and they came out really good.  ;D Sorry, no pix of those. I lose all sight of documentation when something that good is on the table.  ;)
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 21, 2013, 06:11:37 PM
(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-5j9ZK_0LcoM/USbYpaJ4JrI/AAAAAAAAOlk/QwYAqCXv7Hs/s800/DSC_6200-PP.JPG)

They're resting comfortably now. (Except for the one that had fallen into the fire and which is back on the smoker.) They look good! I tasted a bit of the one that had fallen into the coals and aside form some surface charring, it was pretty good. They seem to have cooked pretty evenly from one end to the other.

At the moment I'm stuffed. (Two lamb chops, vegetables, salad, wine and dessert while these were smoking.  ;D )

After resting about 20 minutes, I could see moisture perling on the surface of the meat. I cut a couple bones out and found them to be pretty moist. I forced myself to eat one and liked the flavor.

(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-TE5kG0EH93A/USbeIZlOJCI/AAAAAAAAOls/l45rdwb7HyE/s800/DSC_6202-PP.JPG)

Couple things... I don't wrap my ribs. Tried it once and didn't care for it. Neither do I sauce while cooking. I serve sauce with them for those that like it but a surprising number prefer them naked. For this smoke I used pecan and apple. I usually mix peanut oil with my rub to help preserve moisture but this time I did not.

Normally ribs smoked on the WSM finish with a more wet appearance. They are laying flat on a rack so moisture that comes out of them (and any additional moisture from water in the pan) tends to sit on the surface. This runs off with the ribs hanging vertically. A disadvantage of the moisture running off is that I could not taste any of my rub either. I think it ran off into the fire. Nevertheless, the ribs came out moist and juicy and did not lack for flavor. The surface had more of a roasted flavor than I have come to expect (and that I like.  ;D )

Bottom line? I think I'll finish this bracket and continue to hang ribs. I will also try hanging other meats such as butts and fowl too.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: Craig on February 21, 2013, 06:15:12 PM
 :o  As we say where I'm from, those look NUMMY!  8)  Outstanding!
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: zavod44 on February 21, 2013, 06:15:42 PM
Looks awesome, I just had a salad, how sad I am now....oh and Hank check your personal messages....
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: 1buckie on February 21, 2013, 06:25:57 PM
Whatcha got goin' on there, Hank?

A Binkman with some meathooks?
Brinkman? Blasphemy!  :o



A good natured razz !!!!!!!!!!

Heckuva idea & the finished product looks outstanding !!!

I mostly like unsauced ribs also, some exceptions due to method.......

I remember seeing the hub-bub over the "Hanging Rack Method / Pit Barrel Cooker (PBC)" over there, seems it works pretty dang good !!!
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 21, 2013, 07:58:58 PM
Looks awesome, I just had a salad, how sad I am now....oh and Hank check your personal messages....
Plenty of nights I have just a salad. Nothing wrong with that. Some times I'll allow myself a rib to go along with...
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: bob hope on February 22, 2013, 05:30:12 AM
looks like a great cook. I'm going to have to try that one day when I get my WSM.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: 1911Ron on February 22, 2013, 09:55:05 AM
So what is the theory on this way of cooking?  Btw the ribs look good!
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 22, 2013, 03:29:23 PM
So what is the theory on this way of cooking?  Btw the ribs look good!

Thanks.

Normally when I cook ribs they are lying flat on the grates and there is a water bowl (with water) between the ribs and the coals. Also., I ordinarily do the ribs at about 250F and this time I allowed it to run about 310F.

With the ribs hanging over the coals, there is radiant heat transfer as well as convection. Plus any liquids that form on the surface will tend to run off and into the fire. I think the conditions produced by hanging result in ribs that have a surface that has a little more heat applied and results in a more pronounced Maillard reaction that is more flavorful. A down side of this is that the fat and liquid running off the ribs seems to wash the rub off. That's something I need to look into a little more.

Another factor may be the juices running down into the fire. On Weber gassers, there are inverted V shaped bars (flavorizers) sitting between the grate and burners. Part of the purpose of these is to vaproize any meat juices that drip on them and the vapors rise up and flavor the meat. This is why something grilled on a gas grill still tastes better than something baked in an oven. That same process may be contributing to the flavor when hanging ribs. It could also be reproduced by simply leaving the water bowl out of the smoker. That would probably also preclude usage of the bottom rack. It might be a worth while experiment with something like a butt which would be harder to hang.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: 1buckie on February 22, 2013, 03:53:25 PM


So Hank, if I'm reading you correctly, did you NOT have any kind of diffuser in between the bottom of the ribs & the coals.....?

That's what it looked like, dripping directly onto the coals, right ?

I wonder if a diffuser, like a pizza pan or something would work like the gasser flavorizer bars, or just defeat the whole purpose of hanging over coals in the 1st place?

Another thought is how long before cooking is the rub applied?
If done quite awhile before, it may help it not run off so much?

Don't know much about this & don't remember what all I read @ Bretheren.........

It is interesting !!!!
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 22, 2013, 04:05:28 PM


So Hank, if I'm reading you correctly, did you NOT have any kind of diffuser in between the bottom of the ribs & the coals.....?

That's what it looked like, dripping directly onto the coals, right ?

I wonder if a diffuser, like a pizza pan or something would work like the gasser flavorizer bars, or just defeat the whole purpose of hanging over coals in the 1st place?
Yes, no diffuser. A pizza pan could probably work like flavorizer bars. When water runs out in the water bowl, the stuff that drips on it sizzles though it does not burn off like on the flavorizers.

Quote
Another thought is how long before cooking is the rub applied?
If done quite awhile before, it may help it not run off so much?

Don't know much about this & don't remember what all I read @ Bretheren.........

It is interesting !!!!
I've been applying the rub before I go out to prep the cooker so it probably has an hour or two at most. Application longer in advance seems like something to try.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on February 24, 2013, 07:27:55 PM
Here's a detail picture of the mount.

(https://lh4.googleusercontent.com/-9jDaUCvGuis/USrd2M_9nxI/AAAAAAAAOnc/7UnSCXLhulU/s800/DSC_6210-PP.JPG)

It's alarmingly simple and surprisingly sturdy. This is 3/8" rebar on an 18.5 WSM. I used an angle grinder equipped with a cutoff wheel to cut a slot in the end of the rebar that would fit the tabs that normally support the upper grate. The slot from the cutoff wheel was not wide enough for the tab so I carefully enlarged it to get a snug fit. I also angled it slightly as it looked to me like the tabs are slightly angled up. I also bent the support to be about 2" wider than the tabs so as to put some tension on the connection when it is set in place.

My original plan was to make two supports that would cross in the middle and notch them where they overlap to provide some additional support. I will probably still do that.

I'd consider doing this on my 22.5 WSM as well except I'm not sure that 3/8" rebar would be stiff enough and I would need better tools to bend 1/2" rebar.
Title: Re: Hang in there baby!
Post by: HankB on March 13, 2013, 08:19:18 AM
I finally got around to making the second brace. As an aside, it is a lot easier to bend 3/8" rebar using a 14" piece of EMT (stick the rebar through the EMT and pull against that instead of the rebar itself.)

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-YWhtEz_e6es/UUCkh729eRI/AAAAAAAAO6A/VEDaquYWGfQ/s800/DSC_6261-PP.JPG)

I'm sure I could fit 6 racks of back loin ribs on that without any difficulty. Maybe even that many racks of spares.

I notched the parts where they cross and bent such that there is a little tension on the joint for additional stability. It feels really solid!

(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-zaORDvY0BRc/UUCkh1qWLpI/AAAAAAAAO6E/5smgLdQwI5Q/s800/DSC_6263-PP.JPG)

To recap the keys to stability:

Now that I have a better strategy for bending rebar, I think I could make one using 1/2" rebar for the 22.5 WSM.  :)