Bark improvement


 

Andy Kaminski

TVWBB Super Fan
For the most part I am satisfied with my butt and brisket cooks.
I just think I could and should do a better job with my bark as a finished product.
It just seems to stay soggy after the wrap.

I mean I guess it’s all right.
I have never had a complaint but I’d kinda would like it to have a chicken skin crispiness to it.
Maybe “chicken skin crispiness” is not the best way to describe what I want but I want to do better than the dark mush on the outside I sometimes scape off.

I think I can do better.
I might go Texas S&P only style then a sear to finish it off and just add my mixture of flavors into the sauce as an experiment.
Maybe I’m spritzing too much to keep it moist.
I dunno.

Thoughts?
Thanks.
Andy.
 

John K BBQ

TVWBB All-Star
For the most part I am satisfied with my butt and brisket cooks.
I just think I could and should do a better job with my bark as a finished product.
It just seems to stay soggy after the wrap.

I mean I guess it’s all right.
I have never had a complaint but I’d kinda would like it to have a chicken skin crispiness to it.
Maybe “chicken skin crispiness” is not the best way to describe what I want but I want to do better than the dark mush on the outside I sometimes scape off.

I think I can do better.
I might go Texas S&P only style then a sear to finish it off and just add my mixture of flavors into the sauce as an experiment.
Maybe I’m spritzing too much to keep it moist.
I dunno.

Thoughts?
Thanks.
Andy.
Andy - I don't recall what sort of cooker(s) you have but Check out the bark this guy gets on his butt. He doesn't wrap, and he's mopping it. He's cooking it fat cap trimmed down a bit, and putting it on the bottom. He's also cooking it a kamado grill which does have a little radiant heat from the bottom the way he's got his set up. Of course, this takes a bit longer so I'd recommend running a bit on the hot side thru the whole cook... Maybe try to hold 275F? If you have a WSM, maybe consider cooking on the top rack w/out the water pan.

 

Aaron Lucas

TVWBB Member
For the most part I am satisfied with my butt and brisket cooks.
I just think I could and should do a better job with my bark as a finished product.
It just seems to stay soggy after the wrap.

I mean I guess it’s all right.
I have never had a complaint but I’d kinda would like it to have a chicken skin crispiness to it.
Maybe “chicken skin crispiness” is not the best way to describe what I want but I want to do better than the dark mush on the outside I sometimes scape off.

I think I can do better.
I might go Texas S&P only style then a sear to finish it off and just add my mixture of flavors into the sauce as an experiment.
Maybe I’m spritzing too much to keep it moist.
I dunno.

Thoughts?
Thanks.
Andy.
I say wrap and then the last 20 or so min let unwrap to dry the bark.

Not sure exaclty what u r unhappy with tho. the bark shouldn't be sloughing off. but potentially shouldnt be crispy either
 

timothy

TVWBB Olympian
 

Andy Kaminski

TVWBB Super Fan
Yeah I’ll give that a shot.
I’ve done that a few times a long time ago and ended up with dryness at the outside edges.
Maybe that was because I was just starting to try to bbq correctly.
I‘ll give it another go and see.
Darn sure worth the try.
Thanks.
Andy
 

MikeCantell

TVWBB Pro
Bark is overrated to me, no hard or burned seasonings or meat is my goal, both can be tough to chew , I feel the same way about steaks, when you burn meat and spices it changes the flavors and not always for the better, sometimes simpler rubs as just salt and pepper might taste better with a sear, try it sometime and let the taste of the meat shine through
 

RichPB (richlife)

TVWBB All-Star
Yeah I’ll give that a shot.
I’ve done that a few times a long time ago and ended up with dryness at the outside edges.
Maybe that was because I was just starting to try to bbq correctly.
I‘ll give it another go and see.
Darn sure worth the try.
Thanks.
Andy
You have described how I feel after starting both briskets and port butts with no-wrap at first and then, with some experience, changing to foil and then butcher paper wrap. I agree the butcher paper is better, but the best bark was with no-wrap. Like you, I had some dryness at the edges, but I want to go back now and try no-wrap again.

Related to this no-wrap discussion, the dry, near-burnt edges were from the thin end of the flat, so I started looking for at least an inch of meat on the thin end. Unfortunately, that can be hard to find and the 14 lb prime brisket I just bought has a quite long thin end. I was thinking of folding that flap back a couple of inches and securing with tooth pics to prevent burning good meat on that thin end. Has anyone tried that?
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
You have described how I feel after starting both briskets and port butts with no-wrap at first and then, with some experience, changing to foil and then butcher paper wrap. I agree the butcher paper is better, but the best bark was with no-wrap. Like you, I had some dryness at the edges, but I want to go back now and try no-wrap again.

Related to this no-wrap discussion, the dry, near-burnt edges were from the thin end of the flat, so I started looking for at least an inch of meat on the thin end. Unfortunately, that can be hard to find and the 14 lb prime brisket I just bought has a quite long thin end. I was thinking of folding that flap back a couple of inches and securing with tooth pics to prevent burning good meat on that thin end. Has anyone tried that?
I have not tried that but, the theory seems sound, what can it hurt?
 

RichPB (richlife)

TVWBB All-Star
I tried it with the thin end of pory loin and it worked fairly well, but that's a much smaller piece of meat. I'd do it again, but fold more and cut almost through the bend to help it stay.
 

Brett-EDH

TVWBB Diamond Member
You have described how I feel after starting both briskets and port butts with no-wrap at first and then, with some experience, changing to foil and then butcher paper wrap. I agree the butcher paper is better, but the best bark was with no-wrap. Like you, I had some dryness at the edges, but I want to go back now and try no-wrap again.

Related to this no-wrap discussion, the dry, near-burnt edges were from the thin end of the flat, so I started looking for at least an inch of meat on the thin end. Unfortunately, that can be hard to find and the 14 lb prime brisket I just bought has a quite long thin end. I was thinking of folding that flap back a couple of inches and securing with tooth pics to prevent burning good meat on that thin end. Has anyone tried that?
I always trim that thin end and it either becomes jus or future burger meat. At least this way it gets used, not jerkied.
 

CaseyMcC

TVWBB Member
For the most part I am satisfied with my butt and brisket cooks.
I just think I could and should do a better job with my bark as a finished product.
It just seems to stay soggy after the wrap.

I mean I guess it’s all right.
I have never had a complaint but I’d kinda would like it to have a chicken skin crispiness to it.
Maybe “chicken skin crispiness” is not the best way to describe what I want but I want to do better than the dark mush on the outside I sometimes scape off.

I think I can do better.
I might go Texas S&P only style then a sear to finish it off and just add my mixture of flavors into the sauce as an experiment.
Maybe I’m spritzing too much to keep it moist.
I dunno.

Thoughts?
Thanks.
Andy.
Go a little heavier on the black pepper than you might usually feel comfortable using. I've started doing that and have seen improved color and bark.
 

Brian Johnson

TVWBB Super Fan
Depending on a lot of variables, I sometime smoke two smaller butts. Wrap one and leave one unwrapped. Mix them at the end,
I've never done that, but it sounds interesting. I usually don't wrap my butts, mostly because I'm too lazy to deal with taking them off to wrap and since I usually cook them overnight for lunch or dinner the next day there isn't much of an advantage from a timing standpoint. Plus, since the bark gets mixed in so much when pulling the pork my theory is that the tougher bark isn't as big of a deal.

As far as briskets go, truth be told I've done so few of them (and it's been so long since the last one) that I haven't really had an opportunity to experiment much. I did buy some butcher paper long ago to try wrapping my next brisket, but it seems to have gotten lost in my way too unorganized pantry. I doubt it got thrown away, but I wouldn't be surprised if it got moved out of the pantry and on to a storage shelf somewhere. But I digress.
 

Rick P

TVWBB Super Fan
I never wrap butts.

I wrap brisket, after it a good bark is set. Once it's set, wrapping should have a negligible affect on it.
 

 

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