Normally the rubs, the type of wood used in smoking the meat as well as the meat specifically the brisket and its fat contribute to a chemical equation resulting in bark formation. Eventually, the bark is formed as you caress perfectly seasoned meat with water vapour and smoke for hours and at the last, you get the bark, delicious and mouther watering. There are plenty of interesting chemical happenings take place in the process of preparing the smoked meat which ultimately leads to the formation of bark. Taste the Montreal smoked meat in Jarry Smoked Meat Montreal and experience the bark that is so delicious.
When you say “bark” it may be confusing with barking of a dog. The bark is a form of a combination of spices used or applied over the meat combining with the meat protein before it is smoked in a smoker. A good bark on pork or preferably on a brisket would make an outstanding flavour that is tasted rarely. You find the layer of onions, ogres, parfaits etc. in smoked meat. In addition to this, you have the thin membranous pellicle, juicy inner meat etc. The entire things are protected by the bark. But the question is how the bark is formed?
In fact, the bark is formed by two chemical processes namely maillard reaction and polymerization. All the processes start to work when the moisture from the meat along with the water vapour from the smoke further dissolve the water-soluble ingredients. The salt molecular are small enough when dissolved in order to penetrate the surface of the meat and this forms smoke ring. The rest of the rub ingredients happen to be big enough which eventually rest on the top and start melting slowly and get dissolved in the fat which bubbles to the surface. In the process, the ceramelization does not occur because the process takes place at a temperature of 300-degree Fahrenheit.
While the process of cooking becomes slow and low with a temperature of 300-degree Fahrenheit, it prevents the ceramelizations and slows the milliard reaction. Eventually, the rub that rests on the surface remains sitting in the liquefied and warmed fats of the meat. This processes eventually increase the flavours of the spices and boosts the outstanding flavour of the bark. In the process, the smoke sticks on the meat particularly into the dissolved run and ultimately changes the colour of the bark in the process of smoking. The process continues utill it gets a dark colour. As the meat moisture gets evaporated the rub begins to dry and in the process, the sugar gets baked and hardened.