Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create a free account.

Al_Dente

Behold My Butt! (2003–2006)

Recommended Posts

I don't know how much help I will be as most of my pig chomping family and associates are pretty much pork purists. Typically, I just brine the pork and not bother with a rub at all. If I do use a rub I don't use much and it is pretty generic, not very spicy.

I would steer away from anything with sugar in it during the smoking process. It will likely just char. Of course, whatever type sauce you add after pulling is up to you. Being purists, we don't usually add sauce as the stuff is just coming off the smoker. Actually, most pork doesn't make it to the table. Everyone stands around in the kitchen and snatches.


Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bumping this up because I served a birthday dinner on Sunday for a dear friend. Sorry, no pictures (too tired, too busy), but several things just worked so well with the pork, I have to report it.

For appetizers I made the Pickled Shrimp, an heirloom family recipe. I hadn't made it in a long time so it was a nice surprise for all. I did cook the shrimp differently, short brine then steamed, and that was so good that I am going to update the recipe with that variation.

For the pork, I decided to depart from my usual . . . brine only . . . and went with this recipe for The Renowned Mr. Brown from the Virtual Weber Bullet web site. We decided that the Southern Succor rub recipe is a winner. We also used some of it to make a vinegar sauce that was used on part of the pork. The favor is well balanced and not so assertive as to overshadow the pork.

I made some baked beans that were not remarkable but they rounded everything out.

Salad was a chopped salad of mango, jicama, red onion, red bell pepper, and pomegranate seeds. It was lovely. I should have taken pictures. :sad: The dressing was a simple vinagrette of olive oil, white wine vinegar and Latin Spice Mix from Epicurious. That spice mixture is just perfect for any salad containing fruit. Since I found it several years ago, I keep a jar of it around for pork roast, salad dressing and just about anything else.

Dessert was a surprise. I had some pumpkin ice cream in the freezer that we never got around to eating from a previous dinner. I also had some dulce de leche that I had made last week when the sweetened condensed milk went on sale. I thinned it with a bit of cream and heated it for a sauce. We had all decided that the idea certainly couldn't be bad but we were absolutely surprised at how good the pairing was. It was definitely one of those things where the sum is so much more than the parts.

I sent them all home with a package of pork, a can of dulche de leche and a couple of smoked chicken thighs that I had thrown on the bottom shelf of the bullet just because . . . well, why not?

We proclaimed the menu an unqualified success. I do need to get a better baked bean recipe, though.

I am left with just enough pork for a pot of Barbeque Posole. I am toying with the idea of getting another hunk-o-pig to smoke some for the freezer before I clean up the smoker.

But, I have to rest first.


Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really don't know if any Carolina BBQ place brine their butts. I just don't know. That is a good question.

I do it because I like the "just right" salt level that I get in the finished product. I really doubt that there is any kick-up in "juiciness" like there is with brining poultry since a pork butt has enough goodies to make that happen without brining. I did pork butts long before I even heard about brining. They were very good. But I can say that they have improved with brining and temperature management in the smoker and monitoring the meat so that I take it off when the internal temperature starts to flirt with 200 degrees F. Any longer and you start to lose moisture and goodness. I give my remote Redi Chek a gentle kiss and put it gently away after every session. :biggrin:


Linda LaRose aka "fifi"

"Having spent most of my life searching for truth in the excitement of science, I am now in search of the perfectly seared foie gras without any sweet glop." Linda LaRose

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We like to smoke a pork butt for a few hours to get a nice smoke ring, and then finish it off long, low, and slow in the oven. We have done it where we put it in the oven around 11 P.M. and then wake up to the most amazing smells. By mid-afternoon the meat is fall apart tender. The thing is, company is coming for dinner, and I want the house to smell incredible, and the meat not to be pulled till dinner time. If it's done at 3 or 4 and we leave it in till 6 or so, will the quality suffer?

Thanks for your advice!


"My only regret in life is that I did not drink more Champagne."

John Maynard Keynes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
We like to smoke a pork butt for a few hours to get a nice smoke ring, and then finish it off long, low, and slow in the oven. We have done it where we put it in the oven around 11 P.M. and then wake up to the most amazing smells. By mid-afternoon the meat is fall apart tender. The thing is, company is coming for dinner, and I want the house to smell incredible, and the meat not to be pulled till dinner time. If it's done at 3 or 4 and we leave it in till 6 or so, will the quality suffer?

Thanks for your advice!

When you put it in the oven, how high is the temp (oven temp, that is)? I'd think you'd be just fine if you put it in a very low oven (like 180) and let it go. This is assuming it has a nice fat cap and/or layer of skin. Do you cover it with foil when you have it in the oven? If not, you might want to cover it later in the afternoon, because I'd think the problem with "overdone" might be loss of moisture.

I never finish mine in the oven, but I often put them in an oven that has been heated to about 200 degrees and then turned off when I put the butt in to keep it warm before the guests arrive. I'm assuming it would be OK to turn the oven off, leave the butt in for a couple of hours. Trust me, your house will still smell wonderful.

However, since I tend to smoke the day of the party, the aroma in the house is augmented by the aroma wafting from me!


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You guessed it. We put it in about a 180 oven. We have not tried to use foil. Any way to gauge, a window, as to how long to let the butt cook?


"My only regret in life is that I did not drink more Champagne."

John Maynard Keynes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If its done at 3 or 4 in the afternoon you could pull it, wrap it several times in foil and maybe a blanket and let it rest for a couple of hours in a cooler, no problem. I have been in a few competition barbecues and was surprised at how early teams were pulling their shoulders out of the cookers, wrapping them in foil and blankets and just letting them rest until judging.

Although I have not tried it, the Cooks Illustrated Grilling and Barbecue book claims that the best method for pork shoulder is to cook it in the smoker for about 3 hours and then finish wrapped in foil in a 325 degree oven for a couple of hours, then let rest in a brown paper bag for an hour. They say this produces the same results as traditional barbecue but in considerably less time.

How long to let it cook? just let the internal temp guide you. cook it to 195, 200 degrees and it will love you like your high school sweetheart.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Bella, what kind of smoker are you using? How long do you leave it on the smoker? What temp for the smoker?


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Susan,

This morning when the dogs and I went for our 5AM walk the temperture was 0 degrees F. When we came home I saw my smoker and I thought that this would be perfect weather for you to be smoking. I had to go to work, but this weekend there will be smoke. Maybe a butt, maybe brisket have to check the market, but in your honor I will damn the cold and smoke I will

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

My freezer has no smoked butt. There just might be one in my weekend, too! Think of it as a buttathon.


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Susan, here's the smoker in the family.

Hi Susan, I'm using a Brinkman watersmoker with hardwood charcoal and a mixture of different wood chips. We usually run it for 4-hours at 190 to 210 degrees.

Smokey


"My only regret in life is that I did not drink more Champagne."

John Maynard Keynes

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Susan, here's the smoker in the family.

Hi Susan, I'm using a Brinkman watersmoker with hardwood charcoal and a mixture of different wood chips.  We usually run it for 4-hours at 190 to 210 degrees.

Smokey

Hi, Smokey, we'd make quite a pair, I'm sure. Me with my kettle, you with the Brinkman.

So, here's an idea. Get up early in the morning, put the butt on and let it go a bit longer on the smoker, then put it in the oven, and you could go as high as 250 in the oven safely. Assuming that the Brinkman is much less fiddley than the Kettle, you could get things up and running and go back to bed.

Otherwise, if you want to take it off late at night, just stick it in a 175 oven, and at a point, tent it with foil and let is sit there.


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Nothing says 'Happy New Year' like 2 pork butts and a brisket goin on to smoke. Everyone thought I was being good about having a lone glass of champagne last night because I was the designated driver. Heck no, I didn't want to be smokin with a hangover.


What do you mean I shouldn't feed the baby sushi?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Nothing says 'Happy New Year' like 2 pork butts and a brisket goin on to smoke.  Everyone thought I was being good about having a lone glass of champagne last night because I was the designated driver.  Heck no, I didn't want to be smokin with a hangover.

Right there with you. I have a butt on right now, and the potato salad is chillin'. Collards and blackeye peas with okra will be the next victims to sacrifice for my yearly dose of luck. The collards are leftover, the peas will be cooked fresh.

Maybe hushpuppies?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So, Happy New Year

There is only one way to start it right

8am

First light fire to melt snow off grill.

gallery_23695_426_144110.jpg

Then gently rub 2 pork butts which have been injected with apple juice and place in grill.

11am

Go out for brunch and leave spouse in charge of said grill. Purchase cabbage and rolls on the way home.

3:30pm

take a picture

gallery_23695_426_193600.jpg

Realize you dont have enough charcoal to finish and move to oven, make coleslaw

155 degrees right now

to be continued....

later that night, 12 hours after starting said fire

gallery_23695_426_212968.jpg

gallery_23695_426_547679.jpg

gallery_23695_426_16568.jpg

gallery_23695_426_328326.jpg

3 bags full

I'm full too

tracey


Edited by rooftop1000 (log)

The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Another butt for your viewing pleasure....

Decided to go the BBQ route for the superbowl this year. The event started with a 3am visit to a friends house who has this cool old Japanese Kamodo smoker.

55411672-O.jpg

I'm on a little less than 3 hours of sleep at this point and my body and mind are battling over if it is now really late or really early. Being a firm believer in the synergy between beer and BBQ, I decided it was late at night which made a beer seem much more reasonable :biggrin:

55411674-O.jpg

A lump charcoal fire was started, put into the bbq and then a few chunks of soaked apple wood were added.

55411675-O.jpg

The guest of honor is a butt of around 7.5 lbs.

55411678-O.jpg

After a wait and checking of the vents to get a temp of around 225 I headed home for a few more hours of sleep. Back at 8:45 and things look good but the fire has dropped down under 200'

55411681-O.jpg

55411683-O.jpg

At this point, food geek that I am, I drive 1 hour to get to a dim sum place to meet friends for a breakfast feast. After racing back to town, throwing together a batch of cornbread, I find my BBQ partner has pulled the pork since it hit 190'. He then got a touch nervous and left it in a 200' oven for an extra hour and a half. Final cook time was around 12 hours. Here are a couple of poor blurry picks, pre and post pulling.

55411688-O.jpg

55411690-O.jpg

Sauce was a simple combo of cider and white vinegar with a touch of sugar and some chile and pepper. Apologies to the purists for not making a sandwich on cheap white bread.

55411669-O.jpg

This was my first slow smoked butt and it came out much better than I anticipated. Nice smoke flavor though not superstrong and tender juicy pork. Thanks to all the earlier posters who provided so many tips.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great job, Nathan. That is a really cool old unit -- and I love the fact that you worked a dim sum run into the process. I suddenly feel completely inadequate :biggrin:

=R=


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ronnie you must go for dim sum soon...my New Years day mid-BBQ brunch was dim sum too


The great thing about barbeque is that when you get hungry 3 hours later....you can lick your fingers

Maxine

Avoid cutting yourself while slicing vegetables by getting someone else to hold them while you chop away.

"It is the government's fault, they've eaten everything."

My Webpage

garden state motorcyle association

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Ronnie you must go for dim sum soon...my New Years day mid-BBQ  brunch was dim sum too

LOL! I do love it but the only worthy dim sum is about 30 miles from my house. That would be a very difficult strike for me during a smoking session; a "looney run" as one of my friends would call it :biggrin:

=R=

not ruling it out, inc.


"Hey, hey, careful man! There's a beverage here!" --The Dude, The Big Lebowski

LTHForum.com -- The definitive Chicago-based culinary chat site

ronnie_suburban 'at' yahoo.com

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm about 10 days away from finally having the chance to smoke a butt in my new Bar-B-Chef offset smoker.

My big question: should I go boneless, or bone-in?

What are the advantages/disadvantages of both cuts?

I'm imagining that the presence of a bone might bring the internal temp higher, sooner. (not necessarily what I want)

Thoughts?


In vino veritas.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Using the bone-in works wonderfully. When you can reach in and pull the bone free from the meat with no resistance, your meat is done.

It will neither detract or add anything by removing it prior to the cook.

woodburner

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
I'm about 10 days away from finally having the chance to smoke a butt in my new Bar-B-Chef offset smoker.

My big question: should I go boneless, or bone-in?

What are the advantages/disadvantages of both cuts?

I'm imagining that the presence of a bone might bring the internal temp higher, sooner. (not necessarily what I want)

Thoughts?

Repeat after me. Bone in. Bone in. Bone in.

I don't think it makes it cook any faster.

One thing about the boneless ones, at least if you purchase it already boned, there is rarely any skin and they've usually trimmed some of the fat.

Besides, if you don't have the bone and that skin, how are you going to make smoked pork stock?


Susan Fahning aka "snowangel"

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×
×
  • Create New...