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Baby Backs - when to pull the membrane

I've always pulled the membrane before putting them on, but I read some people pull the membrane part way through the cook.  I'm wondering is it a heat shield that prevents some moisture from dripping out in the first stage of the cook? 

Who has tried it and is it worth handling rubbed and hotter ribs to do it later on?

 

Large BGE

 

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Comments

  • MrCookingNurseMrCookingNurse Posts: 4,300
    edited June 2013
    Always pulled while in trimming and doing prep work.

    Where did you see that? Doesn't sound good to me


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    XLBGE 
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 27,351
    Be awful slippery halfway through the cook methinks.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • bigphilbigphil Posts: 1,386
    I did a rib contest I forgot to pull it .so when I took them off to foil I pulled it then to me it was much easier to pull . In the end I don't know if it helped or hurt the ribs but I won the contest .
    Large Big Green Egg , XL Big Green Egg . BBQ Guru, Weber Kettle, Weber Q grill for road trips.
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  • TexanOfTheNorthTexanOfTheNorth Posts: 3,609
    Never heard of pulling during the cook. I always pull mine before rubbing.
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    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • MrCookingNurseMrCookingNurse Posts: 4,300
    bigphil said:

    I did a rib contest I forgot to pull it .so when I took them off to foil I pulled it then to me it was much easier to pull . In the end I don't know if it helped or hurt the ribs but I won the contest .

    Haha awesome man!


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    XLBGE 
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  • TexanOfTheNorthTexanOfTheNorth Posts: 3,609
    I did a rib contest I forgot to pull it .so when I took them off to foil I pulled it then to me it was much easier to pull . In the end I don't know if it helped or hurt the ribs but I won the contest .
    Haha awesome man!
    Just goes to show that there's often no "right" or "wrong" answer!
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    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • calikingcaliking Posts: 7,060
    I usually don't pull the membrane at all. I haven't found a big difference. It definitely would not mess with it during the cook - sounds like too much effort.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
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  • bigphilbigphil Posts: 1,386
    edited June 2013
    caliking said:

    I usually don't pull the membrane at all. I haven't found a big difference. It definitely would not mess with it during the cook - sounds like too much effort.

    I foiled mine and when I pulled it .it came off in one sheet on all four racks .I thought it was easier then when uncooked
    Large Big Green Egg , XL Big Green Egg . BBQ Guru, Weber Kettle, Weber Q grill for road trips.
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  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 5,444
    I pull mine off before applying rub so rub gets to meat on both sides. I find that if I leave them on the counter for a little bit it comes off easier than if I try ti pull it right out of fridge.
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
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  • GaryLangeGaryLange Posts: 279
    It was always taught to me to pull it before you put the rub on. That is the way I have always done it and plan to keep doing it that way. Works for me!
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  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 7,136
    I think the issue is foiling. A foiled rib, which is really kinda braising, will almost steam the membrane off. Only time I've done this was when I could not get the membrane off before a cook. Swifts BBs a couple of years ago, before they started doing it for you. 
    using a piece of paper towel to grab the corner of the membrane makes it much easier. 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
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  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 17,283
    maybe the first couple dozen rib cooks for me the membrane gave me problems, then one day it just became easy, i dont know why but they just easily pull off the ribs easy now for me. almost think that others who tell you to do it different ways never did try enough to get past that what seems to be a barrier in rib cooking
    :))
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  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 14,812
    I grab a skewer and lift up an end, then use pliers to tear it off.  90% of the time it works every time.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, Kamado Joe Jr., smoker with a 5k btu AC, gas grill, fire pit, pack of angry cats, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    New Orleans, LA - we know how to eat 

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  • bigphilbigphil Posts: 1,386
    When i did that they cooked for 3 hours then I pulled the membrane and foiled . Was a mistake on my part but it pulled easy reminded me of peeling sunburned skin lol
    Large Big Green Egg , XL Big Green Egg . BBQ Guru, Weber Kettle, Weber Q grill for road trips.
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  • Charlie tunaCharlie tuna Posts: 2,191
    Before - paper toweler here!
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  • JSobotkinJSobotkin Posts: 30
    Is it true that Costco removes the membrane from their baby back ribs?

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    XLg BGE - JANUARY 2013

     

    Spare rib anyone? – Adam

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  • TexanOfTheNorthTexanOfTheNorth Posts: 3,609
    JSobotkin said:
    Is it true that Costco removes the membrane from their baby back ribs?
    Not in my experience!
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    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • JRWhiteeJRWhitee Posts: 2,666
    I buy Costco Baby Backs all the time and the membrane has always been removed. 
                                                                        
    _________________________________________________

    Large BGE 2006, Mini Max 2014 
    Founding Member of the Green Man Group cooking team.
    Johns Creek, Georgia




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  • TexanOfTheNorthTexanOfTheNorth Posts: 3,609
    JRWhitee said:
    I buy Costco Baby Backs all the time and the membrane has always been removed. 
    Are you buying the pre-rubbed/marinated baby backs?
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    Well, "spa-Peggy" is kind of like spaghetti. I'm not sure what Peggy does different, if anything. But it's the one dish she's kind of made her own.
    ____________________
    Aurora, Ontario, Canada
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  • JRWhiteeJRWhitee Posts: 2,666
    No to the pre rubbed, I buy the 3 pack baby backs. I did buy the St. Louis style 3 pack last time and I had to remove the membrane but never on the Baby Backs.
                                                                        
    _________________________________________________

    Large BGE 2006, Mini Max 2014 
    Founding Member of the Green Man Group cooking team.
    Johns Creek, Georgia




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  • grege345grege345 Posts: 3,437
    Just saw some guy on pitmasters tv show remove halfway thru
    LBGE& SBGE———————————————•———————– Pennsylvania / poconos

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  • aemaem Posts: 115
    caliking said:
    I usually don't pull the membrane at all. I haven't found a big difference. It definitely would not mess with it during the cook - sounds like too much effort.
    I was watching the BBQ with Franklin series on the web. Aaron Franklin says he doesn't pull the membrane at the store, but doing so will make better ribs. 
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  • BotchBotch Posts: 3,269
    Chubbs said:
    I find that if I leave them on the counter for a little bit it comes off easier than if I try ti pull it right out of fridge.
    I'd just read or watched that recently, anxious to give it a try.  
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    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
     
    Ogden, Utard.  
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  • Costco probably has different regional sources for babybacks, so what you get may vary for that reason alone.
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  • calikingcaliking Posts: 7,060
    @aem: I can't tell the difference. Plus I actually like chewing on the membrane and sucking the rub out of it.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 27,351

    Didn't even know there was one for most of my life and I cooked a lot of ribs. Remove it now but never noticed much difference. Next time they are on sale I'll do a side by side.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • WalrusBBQWalrusBBQ Posts: 151
    Are most of you cooking 3/1/1 or just straight up indirect? 
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    Beers & BBQ

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  • fiver29fiver29 Posts: 511
    I buy the prepacked ribs at Costco all the time and the membrane is always removed.
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    Strongsville, Ohio

    Yes.  I own a blue egg!  Call Atlanta if you don't believe me!
    [I put this here so everyone knows when I put pictures up with a blue egg in it]

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  • JSobotkinJSobotkin Posts: 30
    WalrusBBQ said:
    Are most of you cooking 3/1/1 or just straight up indirect? 
    rib rack, indirect (place setter), 3/2.5/1

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    XLg BGE - JANUARY 2013

     

    Spare rib anyone? – Adam

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  • bbqlearnerbbqlearner Posts: 739
    At the beginning during prep work.

    Houston, TX - Buddy LBGE, Don SBGE, Tiny Mini & Shiny Momma Pitts n Spitts

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