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Competition BBQ *On Topic Only* Discussion regarding all aspects of Competition BBQ. Experiences competing or visiting, questions, getting started, Equipment, announcements of events, Results, Reviews, Planning, etc. Questions here will be responded to with competition BBQ in mind.


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Unread 12-06-2012, 10:02 AM   #1
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Default Injecting cold meat?

I was watching an old episode of Pitmasters the other day and I caught something I never heard before. It was the one where Tuffy gives Myron a nice frozen brisket. Myron says that he has to get it thawed out because injections don't take as well when the meat is cold -- or something to that effect. Of course you can't inject a nearly frozen brisket but is there a benefit to injecting a not so cold brisket? Does it have something to do with all the blood in the meat? Thanks Y'all!
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Unread 12-06-2012, 11:24 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JS-TX View Post
I was watching an old episode of Pitmasters the other day and I caught something I never heard before. It was the one where Tuffy gives Myron a nice frozen brisket. Myron says that he has to get it thawed out because injections don't take as well when the meat is cold -- or something to that effect. Of course you can't inject a nearly frozen brisket but is there a benefit to injecting a not so cold brisket? Does it have something to do with all the blood in the meat? Thanks Y'all!

Interesting question, I will be keeping an eye out to see what the overall opinion is.

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Unread 12-06-2012, 12:10 PM   #3
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What temperature range would you consider "not so cold"? With the meat "danger zone" from 40-140 degrees it really just leaves 32-40 degrees so the meat isn't frozen and injectable.
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Unread 12-06-2012, 01:15 PM   #4
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Allegedly when a meat is warmer it wont show injection marks
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Unread 12-06-2012, 01:36 PM   #5
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What temperature range would you consider "not so cold"? With the meat "danger zone" from 40-140 degrees it really just leaves 32-40 degrees so the meat isn't frozen and injectable.
Whatever temp it may be if you take a unfrozen brisket out of the fridge and leave it on the counter for about an hour.
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Unread 12-06-2012, 03:26 PM   #6
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U can inject at room temp or a little. cooler w better results. The meat is more relaxed so the injection spreads through the fibers better and will squirt u back a lot less, lol.
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Unread 12-06-2012, 05:46 PM   #7
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Allegedly when a meat is warmer it wont show injection marks
New one on me.

Quoting the many University studies and the USDA. Marinating adds flavor and tenderizes meat, but it does not kill bacteria. For this reason, marinate meat only in the refrigerator to keep it at a temperature where bacteria won’t grow. Non of witch makes a difference if the meat is cold or warm. If the meat is cold it will take more time for the marinade to break down the fatty tissues and replace it with the marinade.

For a thick cut like brisket it will take 2.5 to 3.5 hours to get to room temp. Then you inject it and then you place it back in refrigeration to get the internal temp back down to 40. This complete time line will be well over 5 to 6 hours. This is not safe and yes bacteria has multiplied several times.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 08:51 AM   #8
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I saw a guy at a comp leaving his briskets out for pretty much all afternoon so I was curious and asked him why. He told me that when the meat is warmer it won't show injection marks. Didn't make sense to me but not everyone tells the real answer at comps. Seemed pretty unsanitary to me. Thanks for the real answer Butcher!
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Unread 12-07-2012, 09:22 AM   #9
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I would argue that letting it warm before injection, if it did make a difference, it would me minimal. So to me it's not worth the risk of bacteria growing

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Unread 12-07-2012, 10:24 AM   #10
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Well if anything it may be worth a shot trying to rub as much blood out of the brisket as you can before you inject. Perhaps it will hold more injection this way.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 08:08 PM   #11
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Most of the injections used in commerical applications, use a product called trisodium phosphate to improve moisture retention in the product. This product actually performs better at temps below 40 degree F.

Until you inject a muscle like the brisket, only the surface of the meat is subjected to the growth of the nasties. The only real issue is, if you inject, do not allow it to exceed the FDA time/temp guidelines. If you don't inject, then you can let it come to room temperature prior to placing on the smoker.
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Unread 12-08-2012, 09:24 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JS-TX View Post
Well if anything it may be worth a shot trying to rub as much blood out of the brisket as you can before you inject. Perhaps it will hold more injection this way.
FWIW, There is little to no blood in a properly butchered animal. Myoglobin is the protien that gives meat its red pigment, as well as what makers the "juice" in a cryo pack red.

I seriously doubt you could remove enough "juice" to make a difference in how much injection the meat would hold. Or that, if you could, it would make a positive difference.

Inject as directed on the packaging (or tweak ingredients as you like for flavor profile) but follow good food safety practices.

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Unread 12-09-2012, 11:57 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stoke&Smoke View Post
FWIW, There is little to no blood in a properly butchered animal. Myoglobin is the protien that gives meat its red pigment, as well as what makers the "juice" in a cryo pack red.

I seriously doubt you could remove enough "juice" to make a difference in how much injection the meat would hold. Or that, if you could, it would make a positive difference.

Inject as directed on the packaging (or tweak ingredients as you like for flavor profile) but follow good food safety practices.

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Yep, I did a brisket yesterday and there wasn't really any blood to rub out. I did chill the injection mixture and it thickened up. Very little squirted out and very little leakage. Turned out pretty good! ... no pics though.
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Unread 12-10-2012, 02:09 AM   #14
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Trisodium phosphate is used in a lot of meats and has become a staple for Competition BBQ. It is most commonly known as TSP, a cleaner and de-greaser used before painting or a great remover for wallpaper found at your local hardware store. Its effect on meat as a hydrator and moisture holding chemical is used by many processors to allow moisture to hold in the lean meats the public now demands.
Back to the question of injecting frozen Briskets, a thawed brisket will accept the injected marinade throughout the fibers of the meat where a frozen will only accept the marinade where the fibers are not bound in a frozen mass. When one talks of staining when injecting frozen the fibers could not accept the injection and injection pooled between the frozen masses. Think of it as injecting a bowl of ice cubes versus a bowl of sponges, which is more uniform and which would pool?
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Unread 12-10-2012, 08:46 AM   #15
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We always keep our brisket on ice except for the few minutes it takes to inject -- it's not frozen, but it's definitely not anywhere NEAR room temp -- and we don't have problems with marking/staining. If trackmarks are a problem, I'd look more to the injection used and/or injection technique.
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