A great steak usually doesn’t need much more than salt and pepper for seasoning and it will still taste fantastic, but some meats are not very flavorful just on their own. These types of meats are a blank canvas that gives you the opportunity to get creative by making a dry rub to help with seasoning.
Dry rubs are a mixture of spices, sugar, dried vegetables and herbs that are rubbed into the meat before cooking. There are many ways to make a good rub, but the best rubs usually have a combination of the three S’s – sweet, savory, and spicy. Brown sugar is an easy way to add sweetness to any dry rub. Savory flavors can come from herbs and onions that have been freeze-dried and ground into a powder. A great way to add some spice to a dry rub is by freeze drying a combination of your favorite peppers and then also grinding them into powder form.
Notice that one of the S’s was not salt. This is because it is best to salt meat before applying a dry rub. Applying the salt ahead of time allows the salt to penetrate the meat better. Keeping salt separate also gives the eater better control of the salt amount. Some people like more or less salt or may be on a salt-restricted diet.
Once you have mixed your sugar, spices, and powdered freeze-dried herbs and vegetables you are ready to apply the rub to the meat. To prevent contaminating your rub with uncooked meat, spoon out the proper amount you need. Never place meat directly in a bowl of prepared rub and then use that same rub at a later date. You should also remember to use one hand to sprinkle the rub onto the meat and another hand to do the actual rubbing of the spices onto the meat. Once again, this is to avoid cross contamination. Once you are finished rubbing the meat, it is best to let it sit for several hours, or even overnight, in a refrigerator. The last step is to cook the meat and enjoy the flavor experience you’ve created.
Since your rub was created with freeze-dried herbs, onions, and peppers, it will be bursting with flavors. Freeze drying actually enhances the potency of herbs when compared to dehydrating. And since you created the rub from scratch and used mostly items from your freeze dryer, you can be certain that there are no added salts or other preservatives in your rub.