Behind the Product: ‘Cue Glue
In the summer of 2015, Savory Spice co-founder Mike Johnston went on an adventure Chasing BBQ. He hit the road for 6 weeks, going to the 7 major barbecue regions and eating barbecue for almost every meal. He stopped at more than 85 joints and learned a ton of information about barbecue.
It wasn't all fun and games, one of the goals was to get ‘Cue Tips from as many pitmasters as possible. He came home with a wide range of helpful tips—from meat and wood selection to heat and fire control, seasoning techniques, and more. Not surprisingly, those seasoning tips caught our attention and one of them even lead to a new product on our shelves.
Let's just say this right out of the gate, barbecuing is a true art form. Like other forms of art, there are traditional ways of doing it but there are also individual ways of doing it. Some mop, some don’t. Some cook low and slow, others cook hot and fast. Some offer sauces, others think it’s a crime. Some slather, others think it’s nonsense. In other words, the right way to barbecue is debatable.
In Texas, Mike learned about slathering. The basic idea is that a few things will happen if you apply a slather to the uncooked meat: the slather will help “glue” the seasonings to the meat, which helps build a better bark. That in turn locks in more moisture, which leads to the ultimate barbeque nirvana….tender, juicy meat encompassed in a ‘smoked to perfection,’ spiced-right bark. The things dreams are made of!
A slather can be as simple as prepared yellow mustard or a more personalized and complex combination of different liquids. Combining yellow mustard (between 50% -60%) with pickle juice was the most common slather he ran into in Texas. Interestingly the flavor of the slather does not remain after the meat is cooked. It essentially "cooks off" and leaves the meat and spice flavor to shine.
The steps for slathering meat are as follows: apply a layer of salt and pepper, brush on a coat of slather, then finish with a generous coating of your favorite barbecue rub. Voila! You’re ready to ‘cue.
When Mike returned home from chasing barbecue he was full of barbecue…and ideas. One of them was to create a unique, Savory Spice slather. So, after plenty of at-home and test kitchen trials, we launched ‘Cue Glue. We talked to Mike for the inside scoop on what makes this one-of-a-kind product so awesome.
"I love this product for a lot of reasons. First off, it has a kick ass name…’Cue Glue. Then there’s the fact that the stuff actually does what it says it will and “glues” the seasoning to the meat. I know this from my own experience using it, and even our local co-packer who bottles it for us says, “This stuff is a real son of gun to clean up, it just sticks to everything.” That’s a pretty good endorsement right there!"
You might be thinking that this ‘Cue Glue sounds like a product that is only for the craft ‘Cuer - that person who loves to spend their weekend hunkered down with their smoker - but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Yes, it is great for smoking brisket, beef and pork ribs, chicken, pork butts and turkey, but one of the first times we put it to the test was to grill burgers. And those were some tasty burgers! Even with the short grilling time, the flavor of the ‘Cue Glue was gone and the (now encrusted) flavor of the Black Dust Cowboy Coffee Rub was really able to shine.
Mike says, "Encrusting burgers is now a regular thing at our house and I highly recommend that you give it a try at yours. You can use any seasoning you like but I like to use one of our coarse rubs because I love the crunch that they create. It’s a like developing a nice bark on a brisket, but in 10-12 minutes rather than 10-12 hours."
To Encrust a Burger:
Simply season 1 pound of ground beef with a teaspoon of Salt & Pepper Tableside Seasoning or ¾ teaspoon of salt and ¼ teaspoon of pepper, form into patties, brush a coat of ‘Cue Glue on both sides and generously season the patties with your favorite rub. Finally, grill over medium high heat to desired doneness.
Perfect rubs to use on encrusted burgers are:
- Santa Maria Sea Salted BBQ Rub
- Great Plains Bison & Beef Rub
- Hudson Bay Beef Spice
- Kansas City Strip Steak Seasoning
- Mt. Evans Butcher’s Rub
- Mt. Hood Toasted Onion All-Purpose Rub
- Pikes Peak Butcher’s Rub
- Wash Park Garlic Pepper
‘Cue on, my friends, ‘cue on!