Ah, sunny days, clear nights, and the sounds of lawnmowers buzzing early in the mornings on weekends. Summer is almost here, and with that comes swimming pools, ice cold lemonade, kids playing outside, and the smell of charcoal grills filling your nose with the sweet smell of barbeque. A summer gathering isn’t quite the same until somebody has fired up the grill for some outdoor cooking. There are few things better in life than good barbeque, and to get the best barbeque you need a good barbeque rub. Most people forego a good rub in favor of salt and pepper, but alas–if you want truly good barbeque, you need a good barbeque rub to set yours apart from others.
Whether you like to grill on a gas grill, cook on a charcoal grill, or truly barbeque low and slow in a smoker, an excellent barbeque rub will mean the difference between great food and food that is just okay. The best rubs are a mix of sweet and savory with a hint of spice to them. There are a variety of spices you can add to your barbeque rub to get exactly the right contrast of both, but timing when to apply the rub is one of the secrets to drawing out the best flavor.
In order to get the best rub, you need equal ratios of salt and sugar. From there, you can add whatever spices you want for heat (cayenne, black pepper, chipotle powder). Paprika is another common spice in a good barbeque rub, as well as a little bit of oregano, sage, celery salt, cumin, and dried mustard. A crushed bay leaf or two mixed in with the rub is a nice way to add a subtle, unique flavor to your rub.
To get the best flavor from your barbeque rub, you should brine your meat, rinse it, and pat it dry. If you prefer your barbeque to be on the sweeter side, add a thin layer of brown sugar to the outside of your meat and rub it in. Let it rest for about 20 minutes on the counter covered in plastic. Your brown sugar will liquefy, and provide the perfect surface to apply your barbeque rub. Next, apply your rub liberally to the outside of your meat and rub it in all over. For optimum flavor, don’t slap it right on your cooker at this point. Let the rub do its magic and draw out the flavor of your meat. Let your meat rest again covered at room temperature for up to an hour. Save some rub for sprinkling over your cooked meat when you take it off the cooker. When it is finished cooking, sprinkle left over rub on your meat, and bite into the best darn barbeque you have ever sunk your teeth into.
A good barbeque rub can mean the difference between mediocre barbeque and some of the best food you have ever eaten. To get the best rub, combine equal amounts of salt and sugar, and then add other seasonings according to your taste preferences. Let the meat rest at room temperature for up to an hour to bring out the best flavor of the meat. Your barbeque rub will make your barbeque the best food you have ever eaten.