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In Reply to: Dry rub on ribs posted by JohnKinMD on February 21, 2011 at 09:43:42:
Both salt and sugar are dessicants, meaning they will draw moisture from the meat. Thus, I recommend rubbing no more than two hours before the cook.
Lots of cooks rub the night before or earlier and produce mighty fine ribs, though. I think they probably use more moisture during the cook (e.g. spray with juice, beer, other good stuff) to make up for it. Foiling with a little moisture also helps replace anything the rub sucked up.
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