Rubs – Enhancing The Flavor Of Your Meats
You can use spices and seasonings to add flavor to your and color to your grilled foods. There are two different kinds of rubs, dry and wet. Dry rubs are made of spices and herbs which you can sprinkle on the meat or rub into the meat. Wet rubs have a liquid base, which is usually an oil, and is used to to coat the meats surface.
How you use rubs is a matter of personal taste. A good rub should add flavor and color to the food but not overwhelm the natural flavor of the food that you are using the rub on. Most dry rubs contain paprika, cayenne pepper and chili powder. You don’t want to use to much cayenne pepper and make the meat so hot that you don’t want to eat it. You should use a combination of strong and mild spices to add color and compliment the flavor of the food. There are many recipes and ready prepared rubs. The rub you use is really just your personal preference.
To get rubs to stay on the meat you need the meats natural moisture. To properly apply a rub you should work the rub into the meat evenly. If you are applying the rub to chicken or other poultry you should try to get the rub underneath the skin. The skin will block the flavor, so if you don’t get it underneath, you won’t be flavoring the meat.
The advantage of using a wet rub is that it will stay on the the meat better. When using rubs on foods that are naturally dry or meats such as chicken with the skin on, you should use a wet rub. A wet rub will help keep meat from drying out and helps keep the meats natural juices inside. Using rubs with oil in them can help keep the food from sticking to your grill. Wet rubs should be about as thick as paste, so that they will stay on the food better.
You should always apply rubs at least an hour before you plan to grill. For chicken and roasts you should apply the rub the night before. You want the rubs to combine with the foods natural juices and penetrate the meat.