Regenerating Barbecue


Have leftovers as freshly cooked

I know very well that it happens to you as well. The desire for barbecue is subtle and silent: it goes up slowly, without getting too lazy to announce, until it comes out of the way to attack you suddenly with all the vehemence it is capable of. So, almost without realizing you already have your mobile in hand, and after you’ve invited half of the phone book to your home, call your meat pusher. This is the crucial moment, the most dangerous for the griller’s wallet, comparable only to shop at a supermarket at 6pm after skipping lunch and drank only a coffee on the fly for breakfast. The logical consequence can be nothing but a horde of happy friends but on the brink of the gastronomic collapse and an inevitable and incalculable amount of leftovers. If common sense was not enough, the butcher’s bill will remind you that somehow we have to save the result of our efforts and then enjoy even those fantastic flavors in the following days. But how to make Brisket, Pulled Pork and Ribs loose the less possible? The magic verb is called To Regenerate.

BarbecueIt is difficult after a feast to be able to eat same things again and again in the next few days. So the almost indispensable way passes through the freezer, with which for having an ideal regeneration it is crucial to not dry out the meat. Before we go into the specific topic it is worthwhile in this perspective to define those that in my opinion should be the firm points of anyone who wants to regenerate the barbecue dishes.

Preparations can be frozen as they are but surface crystallization will tend to dry them slowly. The best solution in this direction comes from the vacuum sealing but if you can not equip yourself in this direction, at least film it generously.

  1. The best time to pack leftovers and retreat them is the same night, without leaving time to air to oxidize the preparations
  2. Liquids, especially water, when frozen slowly tend to develop crystals larger than when freezing is fast. Larger crystals break the fibers from the inside, making them a colander during reheating, making the meat dry and stringy. It is important therefore to use only 3-star freezers, those who reach -18ºC.
  3. Also a great help is to cool the preparations in the refrigerator before passing them into a freezer, so to accelerate the proces.
  4. Certainly the best results are decongelating the preparations before they are heated but you get excellent dishes even by starting directly from the freezer. Less important in my opinion, compared to raw meat, is the speed at which decongestation takes place.

Let’s go now to those who are my favorite ways to regenerate the three great American Barbecue Classics (Brisket, Pulled Pork and Ribs), trying to get a result the less far possible from the original dishes.

Regenerating Brisket

Rigenerare Brisket

As first, get the brisket juice, put it in a bottle and turn it over. Let it settle for a few minutes to let the fat go to the surface. Then open the cap slightly, leaving the separate juices dripping in a glass until reaching the level of fat. Close the cap and throw the bottle away with the grease inside. Now mix the juices with a spoonful of barbecue sauce.

The ideal would be if you had left the entire brisket and proceeded to cut it to pieces, so you can pack each one whole and isolated, and then be able to heat each one at needing. But if you have already sliced it all during the evening, it will work equally: divide into portions given by a number of slices each. Put the cuts or slices in a small foil pan with half a glass of juice. Vacuum seal and freeze. Do not store in a freezer for more than three months.

Release the Brisket portion from the vacuum and regenerate it in a ventilated oven at 160°C until reaching 60°C internal. Slice the Brisket and dip the slices in its own juices before serving.


Regenerating Pulled Pork

Rigenerare Pulled Pork

In this case, proceed to shred all Pork, mixing it with its own juices. Then pour it directly into the vacuum bag. A very important note is that before you create each portion and put it in a vacuum, stir up all Pulled Pork once again: the portion should be wrapped in its own fat. Put it in a freezer. Personally I found conservation times without any lost, lower than those of Brisket.

Release the Pulled Pork portion from the vacuum and place it in a bottom dish. With the aid of a brush, cover it with a generous layer of barbecue sauce and heat it in a microwave oven at 600-650W for 5 minutes. Mix the portion of Pulled Pork and give it a further minute of heating in the microwave before serving. In the case of more generous portions, this may be inadequate in time: increase the minutes as needed.

Regenerating Pork Ribs

Rigenerare Ribs

As in the case of Brisket, the ideal would be if you had avoided separating the slabs in the individual ribs. In this case, pull the slabs one at a time as they are, or divide them into portions of 4-6 ribs. Vacuum seal and place them in a freezer. Concerning ribs conservation times without any lost are the same as those of the Brisket.

Free the Slab or the portion from vacuum and with the help of a brush, cover it with a generous layer of barbecue sauce. Wrap it in a foil sheet and allow it to heat in a ventilated oven at 120°C for about 1 hour. Be sure to seal the foil well: if you leave some openings the meat will tend to dry. Finally, remove the ribs from the foil and put them back into the oven at high temperature grill for 5 minutes before serving.

In this way my Q always looks like just done. And you, you have your favorite method of regenerating barbecue?

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