Baby Back BBQ – Dry v Wet Rubs

Mastering the art of marinating meat is what separates the men from the boys when it comes to barbequing. Ribs in Perth definitely don’t get their famous smoky flavour if they haven’t been shown this kind of care and attention before they are cooked. The two main methods for marinating meat are called the ‘dry rub’ and the ‘wet rub’. Each technique has its own precise method in order to achieve maximum flavour.

This guide compares the two techniques to see which method gets the most out of meat.

Dry Rub

As the name suggests, the dry rub doesn’t involve any liquid at all. The best steak in Perth always has a rich, deep flavour so the dry rub works best when only a small amount is applied to the outside of the meat. The idea is to create a crust on the meat which is then cooked. This flavoursome crust is made from a mixture of different herbs and spices such as paprika, chilli and garlic powder. The paprika in the mixture dictates the smokiness of the sauce whilst the chilli dictates the heat.

Dry rubs work best on meat which does not require much cooking time. Steaks, fish and chicken are three of the most suitable candidates for the dry rub treatment. The trick is to let the ingredients sit on the skin for as long as possible so the meat becomes flavoured on the outside without overpowering the rest of the meat.

The grill should be turned to a high temperature to ensure the best results.

Tony Roma’s steak restaurants in Perth have used this method on steaks since opening over 40 years ago.

Wet Rub

The wet rub does as the name suggests and adds moisture to the ‘dry rub’ mixture. Lots of different liquids can be used to create the wet rub, each liquid will add a slightly different flavour into the mix. For example, a rich smoky taste will be created by adding bourbon or whisky to the dry ingredients. For a lighter, zestier taste honey and mustard can be rubbed onto the meat.

The wet rub is designed to infuse the whole of the meat with the flavour of the sauce. As for the consistency of the wet rub, this will range from a grainy paste to a light sauce.

A wet rub should be applied to meat which is going to be cooked over a long period of time. Ribs are the perfect food for a slow rub because they require hours of tenderising in the oven. Pork chops which are slowly cooked in the oven can be glazed in an apple and chilli sauce for maximum effect.

The wet rub should be handled carefully so that the flavour of the meat can still be clearly tasted. The meat should be turned over and reapplied with sauce every so often.

Hopefully, this guide has whetted some appetites for tasty marinated meat!

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