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Up early/late smoking a pig

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Up early/late smoking a pig

Old 06-01-12, 02:55 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

I think my buddy used a mix of hickory and apple for ABT's. That's usually my standard smoking wood.
Old 06-05-12, 11:57 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

So I got a boneless pork butt this time, going to smoke it tomorrow for the party Saturday...the other ones I've done were bone-in, should I still be shooting for the same 190 internal temp? How much of a difference should I expect in cook time (it's a bit over 8 lbs)?

Decided to do it ahead of time so I wasn't messing with it with 40+ guests to entertain at the same time.

Plan on just refrigerating it and putting it in the slow cooker. Should I add BBQ sauce? Anything else? Before I've just left it dry and put BBQ sauce on top of it on the sandwich.

And any guesses as to how many (smallish) sandwiches that will make? Also grilling burgers and brats, so I think I'll be fine. I'm just getting the cheap 99c 8 packs of buns, I figured 1/3 lb would be quite a bit on a bun that size.

Originally Posted by Xander View Post
I think my buddy used a mix of hickory and apple for ABT's. That's usually my standard smoking wood.
Thanks, going to make some tomorrow.
Old 06-05-12, 12:03 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

I bought a whole shoulder at about 12 pounds and bone-in but cut off at least a pound of skin. There is still part of the skin that I can't get off. I usually smoke Boston Butts so this is a new experience for me. Can I still shoot for 6-10 hours of smoke and then oven it to 190+?
Old 06-05-12, 12:05 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

I use maple wood as well. It seems to be extremely mild. Apple is my favourite by far.
Old 06-05-12, 12:27 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Bone in should take considerably longer to cook.

Without bone, you will likely want to bind it up tight. I use those cooking rubber bands.

I generally only do minor trimming. Tho it does depend on the piece. Over trimming is a mistake that will effect the meat. Under trimming wont hurt anything as you can remove as you pull apart or cut.

When cooking for parties I time so it so I pull off the smoker about 3 hrs prior to star of party. Then wrap in foil and put in a small cooler. This technique will easily keep the meat hot for several hours and super moist. Also good for taking on tailgating or to others houses.

When rewarming leftovers I use a little vinegar base BBQ sauce that uses the same spices as the rub I use. Basically I retain some rub to make the sauce. I never premix tomato or mustard based BBQ sauce in the meet before serving. 1st, really goog Q doesn't need sauce, and 2nd people might have a preference over one type or another or amount.
Old 06-05-12, 08:43 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

From what I've read, it sounds like if you're going to smoke days before the party, don't pull it, just plastic wrap it then aluminum foil it and cook it in the oven the day of the party? Make sense (the idea being to hold the moisture in longer)?
Old 06-05-12, 10:03 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Yea, I just got that too. I wouldn't cook tomorrow. Cook it so that it finishes a few hours before the party. Like I say, I usually shoot for 3 hrs before party, but you could go 4-5 hours before easy. Foil and cooler. It will stay warm.

I'd still go 1.5 hours per lb. So I'd figure about 12 hours. And as I mentioned in a previous post, if I keep the temp where I intend, I would just go 12 hours and not worry about internal temp. But it certainly wouldn't hurt to check it. But even if you reach your desired temp, I wouldn't pull off till you reach that 12 hour mark. But then again, it is more an art than a science.
Old 06-05-12, 10:08 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by dsa_shea View Post
I bought a whole shoulder at about 12 pounds and bone-in but cut off at least a pound of skin. There is still part of the skin that I can't get off. I usually smoke Boston Butts so this is a new experience for me. Can I still shoot for 6-10 hours of smoke and then oven it to 190+?
Sure. That is a common technique. Many believe it stops taking smoke after about 1/2 way through the cooking. And the foil help keep it moist.

My only issue with that, is one of my favorite parts of true BBQ is those "burnt ends". You still get them if you foil and finish in the oven, but the trapped moisture changes the texture. It is a preference, not a right or wrong.

I typically leave on the smoker for the entire cook. However, I have done the foil, finish in the oven thing. Trust, your guests will love and only you will know the details on how you cooked (not that it is anything I wouldn't tell people. It is a common technique and from what I hear, used on the the BBQ tourny's)
Old 06-05-12, 10:17 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Goddamn you Sdallnct...I think you've convinced me to wait until Saturday. Problem is...I'm going to have to wake up to start the damn thing at 3am. And by the time the party starts at 5pm, I'll be done (as in, asleep). So how long should I expect a boneless 8 pounder to go? I'm blaming you if it's not done on time!

One big reason I was going to do it tomorrow was no wind, and wind expected Friday/Saturday...but at least now I can blame sdallnct if things don't go just right.

Last edited by aktick; 06-05-12 at 10:33 PM.
Old 06-05-12, 11:02 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by aktick View Post
Goddamn you Sdallnct...I think you've convinced me to wait until Saturday. Problem is...I'm going to have to wake up to start the damn thing at 3am. And by the time the party starts at 5pm, I'll be done (as in, asleep). So how long should I expect a boneless 8 pounder to go? I'm blaming you if it's not done on time!

One big reason I was going to do it tomorrow was no wind, and wind expected Friday/Saturday...but at least now I can blame sdallnct if things don't go just right.
Ha! With great power comes great responsibility.

I'm thinking 11-13 hours. Don't time it too close. Try to have it finished by 1-2pm for for your 5pm party. They stay beautifully in foil in a cooler. It will still be warm/hot after 3 hours in the cooler. I use one of those small, hard sized coolers that basically hold a 6-pack. Bigger than lunch box size, but not huge.

Remember a couple things...it is as much an art form as science. So if after 7-8 hours, you really don't think you are going to make it, foil it up and finish at about 300 in the oven. The steady, no variance heat, wrapped in foil will finish in just a couple hours. And it will be very, very good.

2nd, if your really worried about it, cook two, starting one a couple hours earlier. So you time it where where the first one is ready about 5-6 hours before the party and the 2nd one 2-3 hours. I've done that before and worked well. Tons of left overs, but I ended up making to-go boxes for folks.

3rd, have the number of the local BBQ shop handy. Any issues 60 minutes before party, run down and pick you up some...ha! I've never had to do that, but my dad had to once.

Seriously do what your comfortable with. But reheating any meat rarely works anywhere near as good as the original. I still haven't found a way to re-heat steak if I cook an entire package of them at once and have left overs.

IMO, the amazing thing about doing pulled (or cut or chopped) pork is that that incredible, melt in your mouth, soft, moist, almost velvet text mixed in with the burnt ends and good smokey taste. It is hard to get that soft, moist meat re-heating.
Old 06-06-12, 12:12 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Thanks.

Any charcoal strategies for keeping the temperature steady (of course I'm still using that cheap Brinkman bullet)?
Old 06-06-12, 01:29 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Afraid not. I'm very confident cause I've done a bunch of them on my weber so I know how long it can go.
Old 06-06-12, 02:19 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

If I were smoking that boneless butt for a 5pm party, I would start it at midnight. Can take anywhere from 11-15 hours, in my experience. If it gets done early, double-wrap in heavy foil and put in towels in a cooler. That'll buy you another 4 hours or so without having to worry about the danger zone.

In the (very) rare occasion that I've had to add more fuel during a cook, I like to heat up some coals in the chimney, usually on my grill. Then I can pour them in or add them with tongs to the smoker as needed.
Old 06-06-12, 02:26 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by Xander View Post
If I were smoking that boneless butt for a 5pm party, I would start it at midnight. Can take anywhere from 11-15 hours, in my experience. If it gets done early, double-wrap in heavy foil and put in towels in a cooler. That'll buy you another 4 hours or so without having to worry about the danger zone.

In the (very) rare occasion that I've had to add more fuel during a cook, I like to heat up some coals in the chimney, usually on my grill. Then I can pour them in or add them with tongs to the smoker as needed.
I would probably start the smoke at midnight, so start the smoker around 11-11:30 to get things up to temp.

I have added unlit coals mid-morning as things start to cool down.
Old 06-06-12, 03:21 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

That's what I think I'll do (aim to get it on about midnight)...so after a bit of reading, the Minion method seems to be the way to go? Maybe that's been my main problem all along. I've always just started with a couple pounds of charcoal, let it all get grey, and then put things together and continued to add charcoal every 30-60 minutes.
Old 06-06-12, 06:37 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by aktick View Post
That's what I think I'll do (aim to get it on about midnight)...so after a bit of reading, the Minion method seems to be the way to go? Maybe that's been my main problem all along. I've always just started with a couple pounds of charcoal, let it all get grey, and then put things together and continued to add charcoal every 30-60 minutes.
Yes, for long cooks, all I use is the Minion method. However, it would not work in my old smoker (a traditional offset). I didn't have the control to either slowly start the additional coals, or it all but ignite instantly.

It works well in the Weber as it is so sealed, yet lots of control.

But yes, I'd try that. Do not use Match Light charcoal. I only use Kingsford Original (still showing $5.48 for 2 X 15 lb bags at my Walmart).

Also with the Minion method, don't put to many wood chunks. The idea is that those chunks smolder. A fist sized chunk if smoldering (as opposed to flaming) will last quite a while and produce a lot of smoke. I usually start with 2 maybe 3 fist sized chunks. One of those "hidden" in the unlit coals. Then 4-5 hours later, I might add 1-2 more. And that is all.
Old 06-06-12, 06:41 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

I'm using an electric smoker and even with that it is hard to keep the temperature consistent. The next smoker I get will be one of those fridge looking ones where you can add more wood without having to lift the top of the smoker off of the base to add more wood. Pain in the ass. I'm smoking a shoulder as I type and I think that the temperature is a few degrees more than I would like for it to be. I'll take a pic of the progress and post it.

Here is my smoker:
Spoiler:


Here is the shoulder that is smoking right now:
Spoiler:

Last edited by dsa_shea; 06-06-12 at 07:02 PM.
Old 06-06-12, 11:01 PM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by dsa_shea View Post
I'm using an electric smoker and even with that it is hard to keep the temperature consistent. The next smoker I get will be one of those fridge looking ones where you can add more wood without having to lift the top of the smoker off of the base to add more wood. Pain in the ass. I'm smoking a shoulder as I type and I think that the temperature is a few degrees more than I would like for it to be. I'll take a pic of the progress and post it.

Here is my smoker:
Spoiler:


Here is the shoulder that is smoking right now:
Spoiler:
Just get the Weber Smokey Mountain. Problem solved.
Old 06-07-12, 07:33 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by dsa_shea View Post
The next smoker I get will be one of those fridge looking ones where you can add more wood without having to lift the top of the smoker off of the base to add more wood.
A neighbor is making a smoker out of an old fridge, thing looks like it'll be pretty sweet. And tons of room.
Old 06-07-12, 08:00 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Been wanting to grill or smoke something. But the rain wont stop. Maybe I'll do something anyway
Old 06-07-12, 09:26 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

I have a little canopy-type thing that I set up when I need to smoke in the rain. Mother nature will not stop me, dammit!

And the Weber Smokey Mountain is the best home smoker you can buy. I guarantee 100% satisfaction.
Old 06-07-12, 09:28 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

After about 18 hours here is the final product:
Spoiler:
Old 06-07-12, 10:02 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

My bark always "rips" like that too...any way to avoid it (I'm assuming moisture is held in better if it doesn't rip?)?
Old 06-07-12, 10:08 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by aktick View Post
My bark always "rips" like that too...any way to avoid it (I'm assuming moisture is held in better if it doesn't rip?)?
Meh don't worry about it. Especially if you pull (shred). I just use a couple big sieving forks to shred. But they sell those claw things as well.
Old 06-07-12, 10:10 AM
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Re: Up early/late smoking a pig

Originally Posted by dsa_shea View Post
After about 18 hours here is the final product:
Spoiler:
Looks awesome!!!

I'm going to do some simple chicken breasts. I'll brine first.

I might go get a big pork loin from Costco as well. Do a sort some indirect/partial smoking on the kettle.

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