Country Short Ribs... Terrible smoke flavor..

Discussion in 'Pork' started by daveomak, May 13, 2011.

  1. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Picked up some CSR's and decided to use the MES to smoke them.

    We have cooked them many times before on the gas grill and also broiled them (during the winter). They have always turned out good.

    Our method is to brine overnight with lots of spices in the brine. Then cook.

    I did the same brine routine this time.

    They were put in the smoker at 120 w/o smoke for 1 hour. Smoke applied as the temp rose to 156 internal temp. Foil wrapped and continued to 170 I.T.

    The CSR's were tender and the spices were a good flavor. The bitter smoke flavor was almost inedible.

    I am thinking brining allowed too much moisture to rise to the meat surface during the heating process and condense too much smoke.

    I have done pork butt, buckboard bacon, brisket and strami. Never had this soured smoke flavor. Never put them in a brine either. Always a dry rub.

    I believe all other things were equal except for the brine.

    Should I have NOT brined the meat? Used only a dry rub? Is that my problem?

     BTW there was no smoke ring in the meat.
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    What you describe sounds like creosote. Did you have periods of billowing white smoke? The MES has a tendency to burn the chips all at once & produce too much smoke, that's why a lot of the guys use Todd's AMNS. The other thing is you won't get a smoke ring with an electric smoker.
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Al, Morning. Boy, wish I know what changed. I used 1/2 cup of chips and they took 2 hrs to smolder. Typical of what has happened before. I am hoping they will be better today after a 24 hr rest.

    I may try reheating them on the  [​IMG]     "gas grill" and see what happens.
  4. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Very strange Dave. 
  5. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I never Brine, but that shouldn't have anything to do with it.

    I agree with Al----Very strange!

  6. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    My first though was as Al said...never brine red meat only fish and poultry sometimes....
    Last edited: May 13, 2011
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Africanmeat posted an article on wood for smoking.

    Maybe, just maybe I reached into the wrong bag. I have hickory, mesquite and alder in bags in a box. If I grabbed the mesquite for a second time instead of the hickory, that could be it. I originally put about 1 tbls mesquite in and was going to finish with hickory.

    Mesquite has a strong earthy flavor. It is great wood for smoking beef, fish, chicken, and game. Mesquite is one of the hottest burning woods. Some people insist that too much mesquite smoke can be a bad thing. I've heard that smoking with mesquite for too long can create a bitter flavor.

    Article Source:
  8. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I have seen CSR meaning country style ribs...meaning pork.

    Beef short ribs that I know are flat type slabs.

    Never tried smoking them as most short rib recipes call for braising and then a long low temp cook ina liquid.

    I use something close to this...  


      And BTW....[​IMG]
    Last edited: May 13, 2011
  9. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    I never use Mesquite. Hickory, Pecan and sometimes the two mixed with some Apple...It may be the Mesquite that did it.
  10. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    So far I have never used Mesquite.

    Hickory is strong & I love it right the way it is.

    Everyone says how strong Mesquite is, so I'm kinda shy on it.

    So that could have been your problem, like Roller said.

    That would explain why I can't think of any other reason.

    I guess I'm a Chicken/Bear on the Mesquite.

  11. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I have used mesquite before with no issues. I was surprised you held off smoking until you were closing in on 156º internal. Most meats do not accept smoke once past 140º internal. Still you could get external smoke though. I would have to side with those that stated too much smoke. Can weigh in on the bringing, as I never do this.
    Last edited: May 13, 2011
  12. my87csx481

    my87csx481 Fire Starter

    I don't have much to offer.  However, I smoked some pork spares around Christmas time for my fiance's parents.  Everybody loved 'em except me.  I could taste something bitter.  I thought it might have been creosote.  (I did put the meat on a little early, before the white smoke died down.)  Also, I thought it might have had something to do with the outdoor temperature.  It was my first and only smoke it the winter time, and it was quite cold outside.  I was able to keep the smoker around 225 though.

    I am certain that I did use hickory and mesquite.  It is possible that I used a few hunks of mesquite.  So maybe I experienced mesquite overload???

    I'm glad I saw this thread.  Gonna' pay more attention to what I'm doing when adding the wood chunks to the coals from now on.

    P.S. - love the quote Flash.
    Last edited: May 15, 2011
  13. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    This ones got me stumped!

    Was it bitter like tingly feeling on your tongue (like sticking your tongue on a 9 volt battery) or was it sour, huge difference in my opinion.

    What was in your brine, what other spices did you use?

    Did the CSR's have any off smell to them?

    It doesn't sound like creosote by your explanation, but its hard to say without more information.
  14. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Glad I'm not the only old guy to test 9V batteries that way!

  15. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Sounds like you grabbed to much mesquite. 
  16. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Flash, Started smoke at 120 then quit at 156. Maybe the CSR's were still too cold from the refer/brine ???

    My87, I think it was mesquite overload. I had a brain f*rt when putting chips in I do believe ???

    SQWIB, I think the taste was WWWOOOWWW !!    I did not expect that !!  I think it was too much mesquite. After a few days in the fridge, the taste mellowed. Still too strong though. Covered in Sweeet Baby Rays and chowed down.

    Spices were garlic, onion, chipotle, cayene, B pepper, etc.
    meateater, I think you are spot on. I do to, the more I think about it.  I really like the zing mesquite adds to the flavor of the smoke. Normally I just add a tablespoon or so. It adds a "what is that flavor" mystery to the food and I like it.

    I think the magic formula when cooking CSR's is not having CRS disease. (can't remember sh*t)
    Last edited: May 17, 2011
  17. Hi Dave i have read this post with interest and have one question. The wood you used wasn't green was it? What i mean was it properly dried before you smoked with it? Once i smoked some venison with green wood and it was so bitter tasting i had to throw it out. A lesson i never forgot.[​IMG]
  18. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Hmmmmm, good thought!

    Any chance of that Dave?

  19. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The chips were the ones W-Mart sells. Had them for a few months and they are stored in an air tight container.

    I don't think so?? I do not soak my chips either. I'm convinced  I put Mesquite in the pan when I should have put in hickory or alder. Just an old man with CRS disease.
  20. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    LOL---I guess we shouldn't mix our CRS with our CSRs, but at least that shouldn't make us DOA.


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