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first time pulled pork question

MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
edited August 2012 in EggHead Forum
I'm going to try pulled pork the first time this weekend. which is better: Boston butt or picnic? or, does it matter?
Athens, GA

Comments

  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    The picnic has muscle that works harder, little harder to coax into pulling, but some say a better texture and flavor.  Maybe not "better", but different.  The butt a little softer and milder.
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    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
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  • Phoenix824Phoenix824 Posts: 242
    Butt
    Steve
    Van Wert, Ohio
    XL BGE
  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,261

    A butt man myself...   Putting one on either late tonight or early in the morning.

    Cookin in Texas
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Butt it is. 5 lb Butt and 2 racks of ribs for tomorrow. What are the best methods/ secrets to getting consistent, juicy BBQ with a good bark? Any foiling involved, or all naked on the Egg? How long should I account for a 5lb butt to cook? Sorry for the newbie questions. I've done pizzas, brisket, some whole chickens and ribs....but have yet to try a butt. I need it done by dinner time tomorrow. Thanks in advance for your help and suggestions.
    Athens, GA
  • I first saw this video  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dfgg7w0pARs and I've been cooking that exact butt recipe for the past few months. It's a winner. I would put it up late this evening for dinner tomorrow... just like the video says! 
    XL BGE w/CyberQ Wifi, KCBS CBJ
  • Phoenix824Phoenix824 Posts: 242
    I never foil - makes the bark soggy.     figure 1.5 to 2 hours per pound.  Hard to ruin a butt.  
    Steve
    Van Wert, Ohio
    XL BGE
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    I'm just trying to decide whether I need to put it on tonight or in the morning. I need it ready by 4:30 or so tomorrow afternoon, but it's been a long week and I'd really love to not have to wake up 2-3 times tonight to check my fire. If its on by 6am, I should be fine, but if there's a mega-stall, I might be cutting it close. Thoughts?
    Athens, GA
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    if you want, start tonight with a stable fire.  check at midnight and go to bed. check it at 4 am. then get up and check it at 8.  if the fire is stone cold when you check it, it will still be completely safe.

    that sais, it's a small butt. you could start in the a.m. at 275 and check temps.about two to three hours before it's done, it should be at 185 and climbing.


    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    Unless you plan on sleeping in late, I'd put it on in the morning.  5 pounds at 1-2 hours a pound = 5 - 10 hours. 

    4:30 PM - 10 hours is 6:30 AM start time if you cook at the absolute slowest temp. 

    You'll be better off shooting for a 265-275 F temp and put it on a little later.  Easier to maintain that than 225F.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    One more question and I promise to leave you all alone: fat cap up or down? I've seen suggestions for both. Which works best with the Platesetter on the BGE?
    Athens, GA
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    Flip a coin.  It really doesn't matter. 

    Put a drip pan, even if it's made from foil, on the plate setter.   

    Some people cook half way with the fat cap down, then flip it up on the second half.  The fat doesn't penetrate the meat until it's falling apart.  I've had to use a spatula to get them off the grill without falling apart when they hit 200.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Alright...I believe I'm set! Up at 6am to get started. Butt is already rubbed and in the fridge waiting to go on the Egg. I'll keep you updated as I progress. Thanks for all of your help, and Happy Weekend!
    Athens, GA
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    Make sure you mix up a bloody mary or mimosa in the morning - it's noon somewhere.  Make it a party and keep us updated.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    The butt is on! Took a while to get my fire adjusted this morning, but we're off and running.
    Athens, GA
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 4,698
    edited August 2012
    Mayberry said:
    The butt is on! Took a while to get my fire adjusted this morning, but we're off and running.


    Don't worry about small incremental movements in temperature-if adjusting, make small changes and wait for 15-30 mins to see the effect.  There should be a plateau/stall somewhere around 160*F where temp will not rise (and may go down) which is normal.  After getting through that you will likely see a slow climb through the 180's ino the mid 190's.  Patience is the watchword.  And has been said many times-if you are lookin, you're not cookin.  Enjoy the journey.  Below is a great read-lots of worthwhile info-

    http://www.amazingribs.com/recipes/porknography/perfect_pulled_pork.html 

    Louisville
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Thanks! I think I'm prepared for the stall. Temp is stable at around 260, and I just slightly closed the bottom vent a little. It's looking good so far. As for the journey, 4 hours of sleep sucks, so I'm going to let the butt take care of itself for a while and I'm going to take a nap.
    2012-08-25_08-45-42_927.jpg
    3264 x 1840 - 1M
    Athens, GA
  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,261

    Timing on Butts for dinner is inconvenient for me.  Would rather cook one for lunch - brisket for dinner.

    Cooking a butt today - choices were to stay up and put it on after midnite ( wee hours of the morning ) or get up really early.   With a brisket I can put it on at bedtime.   I took the get up really early option - I got sleepy before it was time to put it on.   I am targeting finishing it mid afternoon - put it in the ice chest.  Pull it for dinner.

     

    Cookin in Texas
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Almost 5.5 hrs, temp holding steady, and internal meat temp at 156 for the past 45 minutes. Looks like the stall has begun?
    Athens, GA
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    And I've read conflicting opinions.....pull it off at 190 or 200?
    Athens, GA
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 4,698
    I generally pull around 200 but if you have no resistance to a probe in and out you are good to go-It will pull anywhere from about around 185 or so-just depends on the level of effort involved-if bone-in the best test is when you wiggle the bone and it is ready to come out.  Enjoy-
    Louisville
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Okay, I thought I was ready for the stall. Now, it's just p*ssing me off. I've been around 160 since 12:00, and it's still holding at 162. Anything I an do to speed it up a little without sacrificing the outcome? I need to leave the house with the butt in hand in an hour and a half. I really should have sucked it up and started last night....that lesson is learned.
    Athens, GA
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 4,698
    You can take the dome up to 325-350 to punch it home-no worries at that temp (check-out turbo butts when you get time).  Not sure this will help by the time you get it-if not, then foil, towel and cooler the butt where you and then finish in an oven wherever the destination.
    Louisville
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    The only caveat I can see is if your dome thermometer is reading high and your actual temp is lower than you think it is.  Something to check (boiling water test) if you haven't already.  (after this cook)

    Anyway, listen to lousubcap - punch it.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    I panicked a little before I got a response, so I wrapped in foil for about 40 minutes. I added a little apple juice, a little honey and another few sprinkles of dizzy dust and wrapped. Immediately, it started to rise and it's now at 190. I just unwrapped and put back on the grill with an extra piece of apple wood to dry the bark out ( I hope). It looks great....I'm hoping I'm not messing it up.
    Athens, GA
  • nolaeggheadnolaegghead Posts: 10,859
    I think you did the right thing - you're leaving at 3:30 I take.  No, that won't mess it up.
    ______________________________________________
    This is my signature line just so you're not confused.
    Large and Medium BGE, two turntables and a microphone, my friend.
    No City.

  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 4,698
    You will be fine-if bone-in then just go til the bone pulls clean.  When ready to pull, make sure to mix the bark into the remainder of the pork and I prefer the sauce on the side.  Enjoy-
    Louisville
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Aghhhhhh!!!! Stall # 2. It went from 190 to 183 and stayed there while I was in the shower. I just rewrapped and put back on at higher temp so I can leave. If it can stray this far from the plan and still be very good, I'm buying another BGE out of respect. :-) Thanks for all of your help today. I'll post some pics of the final product later. Keep your fingers crossed for me.
    Athens, GA
  • MayberryMayberry Posts: 425
    Crap....it was so good, I forgot to take an after picture. The people we had dinner with ate every last bite of the pork! Granted, the bark could have been a little more firm, but the tenderness and taste was REALLY good...maybe some of the best I've ever had. Next time, I'm starting the night before so I don't have to wrap in foil to bring it out of the stall, and I'm adding some kosher or sea salt to the Dizzy Dust. Otherwise, it was a success and I'm very happy with the results. Thanks again to all of you for your help. This board is awesome and you really help those of us who love our Eggs and want to learn.
    Athens, GA
  • AWESOME!!  

    And the bark probably wasn't as "firm" because you had to foil it for awhile.  The next time you do it, don't foil at all & you'll have an EGG-cellent bark (that's the same way I do my ribs, NO foil, just throw 'em on the grill & don't even look @ 'em for at least 4-5 hrs)... 
    Don't get set into one form, adapt it and build your own, and let it grow, be like water. Empty your mind, be formless, shapeless — like water. Now you put water in a cup, it becomes the cup... Now water can flow or it can crash. Be water, my friend. - Bruce Lee
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