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A few pulled pork questions (long)

bobbybbobbyb Posts: 1,349
edited 4:49AM in EggHead Forum
My daughter requested that I cook pulled pork for 35 for her post college graduation partythis Saturday. This is the first time I have cooked 4 butts at the same time. I used plate setter, drip pan under normal grid. Put two butts on the lower grid and two on the grid extender. The top two came off this morning at 0530 after a 16+ hour cook and 200 deg internal. I left the bottom two on because they were at 188 deg. After 3-1/2 more hours the internal temp only got to 195 and I could see no more progression. I finally pulled them off and they seemed to be more fall apart than the first two. I jacked the temp up from 230 to 280 for the last 3 hours. I am confused about this occurrance. I know that the temp would have been warmer on the upper grid, but does this account for the bottom two not reaching 200? Did the fat basting the lower two got have anything to do with this?[p]
Now for the transporting and serving question: I will pack these in 1 gal food saver bags after a few hours wrapped in the cooler and then transport in a cooler tomorrow, Friday. The fete is on Saturday afternoon. I plan to reheat these in boiling water for 30 min or so. Question: Should I freeze these, or just leave them on ice prior to the boiling?[p]One more thing: Can abts be handled in the same way, bagged and boiled, or would they be missing something?[p]Appreciate any thoughts. My egging skills have increased significantly since getting my 1st egg last August by reading this forum.[p]Sorry I am missing Waldorf (my old stomping grounds in a previous life), but #1 daughtger's graduation had to take precidence. Maybe next year.....[p]Cheers, Bob

Comments

  • Bobby-QBobby-Q Posts: 1,993
    bobbyb,
    No 2 pieces of meat are the same and even if they were they would cook differently. [p]If you foodsaver the meat you'll be fine just refrigerating it until you heat it up. You can either boil in bag, microwave it (my personal favorite way of doing it) or heat it up in like a crock pot with some Coca-Cola. Any of those 3 ways will make it be as good as fresh out of the egg.[p]I've never done ABTs ahead but I imagine they would lose some texture doing the cooling and reheating thing. I'm sure the bacon may not crisp up as nicely, but then again if you heat them in an oven maybe it woud crisp back up. I'm sure they would basically taste the same so why not give it a try and let us all know how it works out.

  • TRexTRex Posts: 2,714
    bobbyb,[p]I have never cooked butts in the stacked configuration, but I have heard others say that the top ones finish first just b/c they're closer to the dome. I also remember someone saying that the ones on top came out a bit drier, perhaps for the same reason. Then again, however, I've heard some people say that they all 4 finish at the same time and produce consistent results on all 4. It can also have a lot to do with the fat content of each individual butt. Sounds like you'll be good to go, though, and you should have plenty of pulled pork to feed the 35 and make them fat and happy.[p]I would not freeze the bags. I would just keep them in the fridge or on ice until you boil them. Before you boil the bags, open them up and stick your hand or a fork in and kind of break up the clumps so that the PP is loose in the bag - this will facilitate the reheating. I recently fed PP to a group of 45 people and I reheated it in bags like you're going to do, and I only had to leave the bags in the water for 5 - 10 minutes to get the pork hot enough (keep in mind they were in the fridge, NOT frozen, which is what I recommend you doing).[p]One more thing - when you boil the bags, try to keep the plastic from touching the sides or bottom of the pot.[p]I'm not sure about ABTs - never reheated them, but I know some others have and they will likely chime in.[p]Best of luck,[p]TRex
  • Mark BackerMark Backer Posts: 1,018
    bobbyb,[p]Let me offer this, and it's that I agree with bobby q about the crockpot. I'm sure the other ways work too, but we've done the crockpot plus a can of coke thing a few times now, and it's been perfect every time.[p]
  • JSlotJSlot Posts: 1,218
    Good advice from all, however, I would advise against opening the Food Saver bags before boiling them. If you do open the bags, how would you keep the water out while boiling? Would you have to re-vacuum seal the bags? I think it's an unnecessary step, IMHO. We use the boiling water method at events where we vend a larger amount of PP than we can cook on-site. The PP reheats wonderfully well in the FS bags. Not trying to be contrary. Just my 2¢![p]Frosty Ones!
    Jim

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 22,115
    bobbyb,
    boiling the bags work well, i use a frybasket in the pot to keep the plastic from touching the sides. when vacuum sealing, i add a tbl spoon of coke to each bag along with a tbl spoon of chicken stock

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    JSlot,
    why vacuum seal in the first place?
    they aren't going into the deep freeze for a long while, he could just refrigerate them in ziplocs.[p]then just before boiling them, open them, stir them up a bit, and reseal. no?

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Mark BackerMark Backer Posts: 1,018
    stike,[p]You don't want to put ziplocks in boiling water. I would absolutely recommend this method when crock pot re-heating. If I'm cooking and plan to reheat within 48 hours, I ziplock and refrigerate, then crock pot with a can of coke and toss occassionally until ready to serve.
  • JSlotJSlot Posts: 1,218
    Well, first of all, in the original post, bobbyb said he was going to put the PP in Food Saver bags, so my advice, and most others were directed towards that end. As MB said, Ziploc bags and boiling water don't play well together. Ziplock and crock pot is a very good option if the hardware will handle the quantity. In fact, we use the electric roasting pans from Sam's Club to hold our PP after it is heated.
  • dublindublin Posts: 140
    Bobby-Q,
    how much coke are you talking about??? a few spoonfuls or do u use a whole can?
    Thx
    dublin

  • SingleMaltSingleMalt Posts: 17
    Bobby-Q,[p]Why Coke? I have heard about using a apple juice but not Coke. Just curious and how much should a person use?
  • Mark BackerMark Backer Posts: 1,018
    SingleMalt,[p]Personally, I use roughly a can of coke per 8-ish pound butt (pre-cooked weight). That's usually around five pounds of meat at the end, and that's about what our big crock pot will hold (more or less). Basically if I fill our bigger of the two crock pots, I use a full can of coke.
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    JSlot,
    well
    "first of all" i was not giving you grief about your answer.
    i was asking why not consider the ziploc alternative

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • bobbybbobbyb Posts: 1,349
    I appreciate everyone's input on this. I now have 17 lbs of pork sealed on FS bags and in the fridge. I liked Fishlessman's method of adding coke and chicken stock prior to sealing. Unfortunately I got them sealed before reading his post. I did put a little vinegar based sauce on the pork prior to sealing.[p]Also liked Marks idea of warming in a crock pot with coke. As JSlot stated I only have a small crock pot so was worried about getting it all hot in time.[p]One more question for Bobby-Q: When you microwave, is the meat in a bowl or do you leave in the FS bags?[p]Here's a pic of the finished product.[p]P5110198.jpg[p]And here it is all sealed and ready for the fridge.[p]P5110199.jpg[p][p]Thanks again to everyone for their input. It is greatly appreciated.[p]Cheers, Bob

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    Mark Backer,
    what about a microwave?[p]i never knew it was so involved reheating pork....[p]

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • Mark BackerMark Backer Posts: 1,018
    stike,[p]Never done it. I've only done the crock pot for reheats.
  • jaymerjaymer Posts: 49
    just last week i reheated pork from the prior day - i use a 18qt roaster oven (see walmart, search on 'roaster oven') and put 6 butts in it with an entire 2 litre of coke (not all coke at one time). i turned it a lot, and also put rub back into the meat before heating. didn't need sauce!
  • Bobby-QBobby-Q Posts: 1,993
    bobbyb,
    I just throw the bags in the microwave and let them rip...and once they actually did that. I just got lazy and careless and hit like 6 minutes on high and walked away planning to come back in a minute or 2. Well I came back, when I heard the KAPOOOOW. It didn't make a mess or even hurt the pork, but it made me realize I either need to vent or just pay a little bit of attention.[p]I do pork about once a week or sometimes more depending on recipe research so I freeze it all in manageable sized bags. If I was doing it in mass I would use either hotel pans or the crock pot depending on amount.[p]But yea when I do mine it is straight from freezer to microwave in the bag without ventilation.

  • bobbybbobbyb Posts: 1,349
    Bobby-Q,
    Appreciate the info. Think I'm going to try all three ways on Sat. Boil, micro, crock pot. Maybe I can get it all ready at the same time.
    Cheers, Bob

  • TRexTRex Posts: 2,714
    JSlot,[p]Yeah, I was thinking he was using Ziplock bags. I've used the heavy duty Ziplock bags in boiling water several times and never had any problem with them melting or breaking as long as I keep them off the bottom and sides of the pot. If you do it right, the heat from the boiling water goes into warming up the pork instead of melting the bag. [p]I guess if you left the bag in too long and the pork got really hot then maybe you'd have a better chance of melting the bag.[p]Just my 2 cents, cause I don't yet have the budget approved to get a Food Saver ;-)[p]Cheers,[p]TRex
  • JSlotJSlot Posts: 1,218
    No "grief" taken, dude! Sorry if you thought I was giving some back. Ain't my style![p]Frosty Ones!
    Jim

  • JSlotJSlot Posts: 1,218
    If that "TRex Method" patent ever goes through, a Food Saver should be well within your budget! LOL. Of course, you might have a problem collecting the royalties for each use. :)[p]Take Care,
    Jim

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