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Special #### rub


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Yep.. The marketing gimmick is in the name.  I have tried a few of them but I have never forked out the money for them.  In my humble opinion, they are not worth the asking price.  Those rubs were more expensive than most. 

 

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I’ve fallen into the trap of buying rubs when following a recipe, and have a pantry full of them, but then I’ll try to recreate the rub on my own. It’s not too hard and by making it myself, I can control the salt, which is one of the challenges of using commercial rubs when brining. Salt is almost always the first ingredient of commercial rubs. If you brine, either wet or dry, you can end up with too much salt after adding a commercial rub. One of the best rub recipes around is Meathead’s Memphis Dust https://amazingribs.com/tested-recipes/spice-rubs-and-pastes/meatheads-memphis-dust-rub-recipe/

 

It’s primary use is ribs, but I use it on lots of stuff. It’s a great base to experiment with. I add jalapeño powder to kick the heat up a notch. Takes all of 5 minutes to mix up a batch and price is a fraction of the cost of a commercial rub. And you don’t have garbage like chemical preservatives.

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I have a number of books that talk about "the science of cooking," and one of them is about spices.  It has a section that talks about "meat rubs and sauces."  It's actually very easy to make your own – there are only a few "key" ingredients.

 

I don't like to use commercial products anymore, because of three things: too much salt, too much sugar, and MSG (often disguised as "hydrolized yeast extract" or "celery extract").  I have a food allergy to the latter, so this is very important to me. 

 

Before you buy it, read the label carefully. It's kind of disturbing to read the ingredients list of that appealing-looking box or jar on the shelf.  (If the name has more than three syllables or sounds like it came from a chemistry lab, you probably don't want to eat it ...)  If you make your own mix, you know and can control exactly what's in it.  (You also learn simple tricks such as lightly grinding the spices with a mortar and pestle before adding them, to release their flavors.)

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Perhaps it’s just me, but I find that one rub tastes like the next when looking at commercial products.  For that reason, I tend towards a simple mix of coarse sea salt and cracked pepper on a mustard base for beef and a simple pork/chicken rub that I make myself from a recipe found on this site years ago.  I have tailored the recipe slightly to reduce salt and buy those ingredients from a local bulk store and get exactly the volume I need to make a single mason jar-full.  Any leftovers after a cook go into the freezer, sealed.  I can often do 3-4 cooks for a few dollars.  If anyone wants the recipe, I can post it.  Let me know. 

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