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New Member - Pulled Pork cook!

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    New Member - Pulled Pork cook!


    Did my first pulled pork all the way on the grill. I would usually smoke it for about an hour on the grill then finish it in the oven overnight at 225. This time I went all the way on a Weber 22.5 kettle using the horseshoe method.

    The charcoal was about 3 deep and 2-3 high about 2/3 of the way around and sprinkled with mesquite chips on the first third or so of charcoal. Had a small water pan next to the butt and a large one underneath to catch the drippings. I used a rub I had been using for about 3 years; brown sugar, cayenne, pepper, salt, garlic powder, onion powder and paprika. From a traveling food show.

    Got it on about 0800. I monitored the temp of the meat using my cheap Weber digital meat thermometer, tested with ice water and boiling water (35/212). I also used a cheap one with a probe gotten from Aldi, same temps on the tests. I will upgrade, but it did the job. I lowered the probe through the vent hole on top to right above the grate, next to the meat. I was able to keep it mostly in the 250 to 300 range, still figuring out the new Weber. I had to add some more charcoal after about 4 hours. I pulled it off around 1600. Let it sit for a few minutes, then started pulling.

    I made a cole slaw with a different dressing; mayo, sugar, vinegar, horseradish, dijon, salt and pepper. Came from a traveling food show.

    In the end, I thought it was a good turnout. My family had other opinions. My little one normally eats 2-3 sandwiches, only ate one then ate something else. My oldest does not like pulled pork, no matter what. My wife liked it, but said it tasted different. My neighbors liked it, but thought all my others were better.

    This one was a pork butt and not the picnic. I usually do the picnics. I did not baste it this time like I did all the other times and the smoke was more than I usually did in the one hour of smoking prior to the oven finish. I also did not wrap in plastic and foil for the last couple of hours in the heat.

    I know there are a lot of variables, however, I completely changed the venue. Next time, it will be the same cut I have used in the past with the basting and wrapping. Then I will see what they think.

    Doing a large pork loin this weekend. We shall see.

    #2
    I think I posted this in the wrong spot.

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      #3
      Welcome BIT! We're glad you're here. I moved your posts to a more appropriate location. Great first post!

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        #4
        Welcome Aboard BlindInTx

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          #5
          It looks great. But it seems like something didn't go as well as it could. Given that you cooked it hot and fast (I need at least 12h at 225 for that size) and without wrapping, I'd imagine it was dryer than normal? What was the final internal temp when you pulled it off?

          Having done shoulder a half dozen ways, I'm a big fan on smoking until the stall (~150-160deg), then wrapping (foil, not plastic) and finishing in a 225 oven, uncovered for the last hour or so to firm the bark a bit. Cut it in half to increase the bark and decrease the cooking time.

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            #6
            Welcome, I do all of mine in the 275-300 range and don't really consider it hot and fast, you shouldn't have a problem. Without any help on why they didn't think it was good my first guess is the mesquite, it has a very strong, and bitter to many folks, flavor (bitter is a weird one, sweet peas are immensely bitter to me, not sweet, but my wife thinks they are sweet and tastes no bitterness). I would tone down or try switching to another wood for your testing.
            To me when you cook at 225 the meat sits all it needs to at a high temp, at 275 plus the last 30 degrees comes really quickly and I find that it isn't as tender so I recommend wrapping in foil, then a towel for at least an hour or 2 when done, this gives it the time it needs at higher temps. People mention the texture as being like a knife in butter but that never made sense to me, my butter is hard, not sure where they are getting theirs. Mine is done when if feels like its hollow when you temp it.

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              #7
              I too finish my butts all the way I try to maintain 225*-250* F. I spritz them with a carbonation of: 1 C Apple Juice, 1/2 C Tarragon Vineger , 1/4 C Worsteshire Sauce frequently towards the end. Welcome to the Pitt, Dan

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                #8
                When I do Boston Butts (10#) I do them @ 225-250 for 12-14+ hours until the internal temp reaches 200. Then I wrap it in foil and put it in an ice chest filled with old towels until I am ready to serve 2-4 hours later. I have a Big Green Egg so I set it and forget it @ 8 the night to serve at noon the next day. It works every time. If I am pressed for time I will wrap and cut about 3 hours off the cook time. If your internal temp wasn't above 195 you may have pulled it too soon.

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                  #9
                  Thanks all.

                  Well John Carter, the internal temp was 190. It sat for about 30 mins before pulling. This one happened to be boneless, which I had never done before, but it wasn't dry and it did pull apart easily (not as easy as my picnic shoulders done at 225 in the oven for 14 hours).

                  John, I don't think the problem was necessarily mesquite, that's all I've ever used, grew up in Texas. But this is the first one I did entirely on the grill with charcoal. And trying to get used to using the dampers to control the heat. I usually wrap it in plastic (makes it sweat, like a rubber fat suit) and then foil, protects the plastic, for the last two hours in the oven.

                  Dan, I always (but this one) mop mine in a concoction of apple cider vinegar, water, oil, worchester, salt, pepper and cayenne (from a cooking show). It's good and spicy. I drizzle it on the sandwich before and after piling on the slaw.

                  LA Pork, this was the first time I have ever checked the temp on one. Always in the oven at 225 for 12-14 hours was always fine. I will do one in the oven and check the temp at the end and see.

                  Thanks again, and thanks for the assistance.

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                    #10
                    Like you say, lots of variables. Hard to pinpoint the real issue. Could be the chunk of meat, I get some that are inexplicably less tasty than others. It happens. I use only butts, never baste or mop, and I prefer to wrap (crutch) about an hour or so into the stall.

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