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  1. 50% loss in weight sounds about right, especially if you've got a bone-in butt. I've never thought to weight it beforehand though- good idea. Re: shredding, I've noticed that also, and wrote it off as different muscle groups having different grain alignment- so some just fall apart, and some are tightly interlaced and take some more aggression to shred. Perhaps the meat closest to the muscle gets saturated with bone marrow fats and/or heated higher as the bone conducts heat inwards also?
  2. pg 111 in my copyright 1984 copy of On Food and Cooking: It goes on a bit more about compromises in cooking time/temp, but I've plagiarized enough.
  3. I made some smoked salmon this weekend in the new smoker- a terracotta pot and a Stoker System: http://blogs.sun.com/rama/entry/smoking_pot_with_an_ip I'll try a Boston Butt next....
  4. And my local market always has skin on, bone in butts, and the guy knows to look for the biggest, fattiest one for me! ← Do you shred and eat the skin and fat afterwards? If not, it'd seem you'd be stripping a lot of the smoke flavor and "bark" by leaving the stuff on pre-smoke.
  5. Well finishing in the oven certainly produced a tasty product-- but I'm curious if/how it'd be different if it stayed in the smoker the entire time. Also, I haven't tried cutting the butt to increase surface area (yet).
  6. 1. here's my current setup. the internals consist of an electric hotplate with a castiron skillet, which can be seen here: http://blogs.sun.com/rama/entry/weekend_of_meat%2C_redux 2. this particular butt didn't have a bone- and I've never seen one with "skin" before. 3. i think its plenty cold-- if you read the description, I confess I had to finish in the oven because I struggled to maintain 225F in the smoker. 4. It wasn't too consistent, but the temps fluctuated between 180-230F. 5. chips instead of chunks because of the electric hotplate. I don't think there would be enough contact between the skillet and chunks to get them to smolder. I'm not sure where you're going with that series of questions though-- would my smoker setup or meat choices really have any affect on choosing to finish in the oven or butterflying the meat?
  7. rama


    Just read the whole thread- great stuff! Report, please. Did these pieces of meat get any smoker time-- and if so, what were the results?
  8. [HOST'S NOTE: The original discussion, "Behold my butt!" became too large for our servers to handle efficiently, so we've divided it up. The first part of the discussion is here: Behold My Butt! (2003–2006)] I recently smoked my first Boston Butt: 2 hours in a smoker followed by 12 hours in the oven- and have a couple of questions, even after reading through the "smoking" threads here. (A full write-up on the smoking session, along with a couple unanswered questions reposted here, can be found at: http://blogs.sun.com/rama/entry/bbq_smoked_pulled_pork ) - Would a BBQ-only session produce significantly different flavor (than the 2 hour smoke, finish in the oven technique)-- it seems after the first few hours of smoking, the meat would form an impermeable protein layer and render additional smoking moot, and only the dry heat comes into play? (Surely this isn't the case, or people would just do a short intense smoking on the 'que and finish in the oven like I did-- but I haven't seen any scientific reasoning to dismiss such as approach.) EDIT: since writing this, I've read here that the chemical reactions responsible for the "smoke ring" stop above 140F, but what I'm really curious about is the flavor, especially given the low surface to mass ratio of a boston butt. - Would cutting the pork butt in half to increase surface area as well as shorten cook times have any adverse affect, such as moisture content? Cooking it whole until it reached an internal temp of 190F was *plenty* moist, so I'm not too concerned about dry meat. If anything, next time, I'll remove any visible fat prior to applying the dry rub. (I lost a lot of tasty "bark" this time when I removed a slab of external fat post cook.) The lazy cook in me wants to butterfly the butt, smoke for 2 hours and finish in the oven- probably close to 6 hours. Considering I finish the pulled pork with a sauce prior to serving, would this be a disservice? I'd appreciate any thoughts...
  9. How does that turn out? I avoid low-and-slow type cooking when you're talking about a piece of meat as lean as a loin-- my preference would be a brine, dry rub, then quick sear on the grill to leave the middle rare.
  10. None of the beers I purchase use twist-offs except sierra nevada. so the non macrobreweries certainly aren't using them. Maybe they're cheaper per bottle, but the bottling line equiment is much more expensive, so only large production shops do it?
  11. Not sure if it applies to shipments, but when you fly, you're only allowed a certain amount through customs. I would check with whomever you plan on shipping it with. May I suggest you limit your initial purchase though? Besides what will likely be a large cost to ship due to the weight (and sending by the cheaper slow boat might subject the wine to harmful temperature variations), you may find your tastes have changed, or that the particular vintage you track down isn't comparable. Buying multiple cases of it up-front without tasting it first is a risky endeavor. my 2 cents...
  12. Just wanted to say hi (first post here) and thank Chad for a great sharpening guide. It prompted me to pick up a Spyderco Sharpmaker 204 and give my neglected chef's knife some much needed love. After 10 minutes with the sharpener, cutting tonights french fries was effortless and much safer. I had no idea my edge was that far gone. The paring knife and chisels are next.... Looking forward to learning and participating on the site...
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