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First big smoke....

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    First big smoke....

    I just posted this in the comments under the pulled pork recipie, but since I haven't made a post here in the forums since I joined, I figured I would start with this. I`'m currently doing the largest pork butt smoke I have ever attempted. 44lbs between 6 butts, all at once. Trimmed, rubbed and wrapped them last night, and put them in the smoker early this morning. The start time wasn't ideal, but my work schedule got shifted for saturday. I am planning on serving sunday for the superbowl. I was going to start smoking around noon saturday to give me plenty of time to hit 203* without wrapping or rushing. But because of my schedule change, I had to start even earlier (6am saturday morning).
    My plan is to hit 200-203, then hold it in the smoker at 170 till its time to pull and serve sunday. Is there a time limit to how long I hold the butts? I was planning on leaving them in the smoker (its gas, and I have free propane) till it was time.
    Even though temps were near 0F this morning, my smoker (Masterbuilt 40 inch,propane)had no issues getting to 225. Luckily it is out the weather in my car port, attached to the house. I had the guys at work make a plenum for the exhaust and routed it through the wall with a rain cap. I have done many smokes with it like this and it works wonderfully. I did add a gasket to the door, and even hung concrete board on the inside walls to add thermal mass. All this while being out of the wind and weather makes winter smokes alot easier.

    I may end up having to hold the temp for 10hrs or so. My plan was to leave everything in the smoker at 170 during this time. But I have never done a long hold like this before. Any recomendations or other ideas? Its cooking as I type this from work. I will be home later this evening to check on it.

    Here are a few pics of this cook as it came home, and into the smoker this morning. The smoker is a Masterbuilt 40" propane. I made a few mods to it make it better for my particular situation, mainly the exhaust. I put fireplace gasket around the door to aid the seal, hung concrete board on the interior walls to add thermal mass, then had the guys at work make up an exhaust plenum and ran it through the wall with a rain cap.

    The smoker sits in my carport, out of the weather, wind, rain, and snow. The car port is a substantial structure, the back wall is my garage door/house wall (painted red in the pic) has two side walls with opening windows and the front is entirely open. The thing is about the size of a two car garage. The smoker sits in the corner, on pad of crushed stone.

    Anyway, here are few pics, the smoker was just after install. I have done a dozen or so cooks with it, many over night, and the temp never fluctuates. Very stable.

    Also is a pic of the meat when it got home, and going into the smoker this morning.

    Nice set up. Good luck with the cook.



      Hi Dave, Sorry I have no advice for you on holding those bad boys for so long. You could use a faux cambro (beer cooler) instead. You can find lots of instructions on that on the main site.

      I'm actually doing something similar, just smaller. Cooking up 14 pounds of pork shoulder butt. My challenge is that the wife insists that I join her for church at 10:30. Trying to have everything ready for the Superbowl party. Game starts at 2:30. My setup (Weber Kettle, Smokenator) doesn't lend itself well to being ignored for two hours.

      I'm using the Wozniak method http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_tech..._tomorrow.html Not ideal, but I'm going to give it a shot and see how things work out.


        Just a quick update, Its been 26 hrs and the butts are all around 190*. I didn't wrap or crutch as I was already concerned about them finishing early. The temp hasn't moved much in the past few hours, this second stall is actually helping me reach my goal this time.


          Keep us posted on how those butts turn out, Dave. I'm following your cook with interest. That sure is a lot of meat. You're going to have some very happy guests I'll bet, eating great food while they watch the SB.



            I served 2 butts yesterday that were cooked all night Friday night. I fudge on the final internal temp if I am going to hold them a long time. Yesterday I had to hold for 5 hours, so I left uncovered in the pit barrel until they reached 190 internal. I then lowered the barrel temp to 225 for one hour. They then got covered and in the faux cambro. They came apart with forks.


              Here they are as of right now at 198. I turned the smoker down to 170 to hold them for a few hours.




                  That's purdy! Can't wait to see those bad boys pulled!



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