In the world of barbequing, there is a new rub: Mixed, dried herbs and spices are replacing liquid marinades as the busy griller’s choice. Although these rubs may not tenderize meat as well as an overnight marinade soak, they can impart a lot of flavor in short order. Here are some tips to help you get the most out of your rubs:
Basic Rub Recipe. Mix together 1 teaspoon each of garlic powder, onion powder and chili powder; add half a teaspoon of ground cumin and salt to taste. Place a teaspoon of the mixture on meat or poultry, and rub the spices onto the food with your fingertips.
Use Your Imagination. Be creative when making different rubs, but don’t go overboard with strong flavors, as they can compete for attention. Less is more until you become familiar with different spice combinations.
Storing Rubs. Keep leftover rubs in sealed glass jars stored away from air and light, but do not refrigerate. To keep air out of the mixtures, place plastic wrap over the jars before you cover them with the lids.
Coating With Rubs. Use a hand sifter with a crank to evenly coat the item you are cooking. Avoid using a shaker bottle, which can create an uneven topping.
Adding in Seeds. Toast some seeds, and then grind them in an old coffee grinder before adding them to the rub. Try fennel and coriander, which impart a fragrant taste to basic rubs.