I'm a foodie. I love to eat, especially BBQ, so this section of the forum speaks to me. I figured I'd occupy a little space by showing off what I do and maybe provide some tips/inspiration to others. Plus, I could always stand to learn a thing or two.
I'm not an expert. I make no claim to be and I'm in no way, shape or form the be all end all authority on smoking. These are things that have worked for me. Things I've learned by making mistakes, things I've learned from my dad (alot of things I learned from him), and things I've picked up on from the internet and books.
If you have suggestions, great, let's hear them, but PLEASE don't be judgmental!
Anyway, now that that's out of the way, here's my first entry.
Here's some butts I did for Super Bowl Sunday.
I ordered them ahead of time from a local meat market and only paid a cent or two more per pound than the Smithfields I usually get at Wal Mart.
I mentioned this in the Boston Butt thread but I'll repeat. There win't a damn thing wrong with Smithfield pork products. Living in VA the first 10 years of my life, I was raised on the brand.
But, for some reason, the butts are too dense. Maybe they were frozen, maybe they're just raised that way. Because of that, heat doesn't penetrate enough to break it down. I've tried various mop sauces.
Any way, the butts from the local place were absolutely perfect. I ordered 2 of them with a combined weight of almost 17 pounds and they came in the day before I planned on putting them on.
I started the day before by mixing the mop sauce and dry rub.
No secrets, I got them from here
If you don't want to click:
2 tablespoons each pickling salt, paprika, black pepper
1 tablespoon each garlic powder, cumin and sugar
I've got a Magic Bullet so I used one of the cups and the top with the holes in it. Worked perfect.
As a note, I used Kosher sale instead of Pickling salt. I think that's what happened, but the meat got alot saltier than I wanted it to.
1 cup cider vinegar
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspon of red pepper flakes.
I found a two quart decanter from Target real cheap so that's what I make it in.
It never hurts to double the recipe.
So I rub the butts the night before and wrap them in Saran wrap. I've heard you can use prepared mustard on the meat then put the rub on, but I haven't personally tried it. Supposedly you don't taste the mustard but I don't see how.
Crank the smoker up to 225. A little higher at first wont hurt since you'll be opening the lid to put the meat in.
Before you start, here's my tip. Maybe it's important, maybe not, but I've always done since the days I used my vertical smoker. Water pan. I put a throw away aluminum under each butt, filled about, maybe less than half way with water. The drippings go in here which not only aids in clean up but as the water heats up, flavor from the juices go back up in the meat.
Wood. It's a personal choice. I'm not a fan of mesquite. Just a personal thing. I'm more into apple and hickory.
Another tip. Charcoal chimney. Indispensable! Takes an instant to light and no fumes.
After the smoker is up to temp I put the butts on and let them go for a couple hours. By this time I may need to add coals. This is when I put the first coat of mop sauce on them. After the initial coat, it goes on every hour. Make plenty, use plenty. It don't hurt.
Each time you coat them, make a check and see if they're cooking evenly. Rotate and swap sides if needed.
I let these go for 10 hours then wrapped them in foil with a good slathering of sauce inside and let them sit on higher heat for a couple hours.
The picture makes them look burned on the outside, but they really weren't. There was a good char, but it was till moist and tasty.
I pulled the butts with a couple forks and sat them out sauceless so guests could add their own.
And plated with baked beans (another recipe for another day), bacon mac and cheese, potato salad, Texas toast and a cold beer. I had a house full so it was Bud Light, not the good stuff.