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Turbo Butt...observations

Did a couple of turbo butts yesterday and just wanted to share some observations.  The plan was 3 hours at 350 dome, then foil tightly and cook until 195-200 internal.  I used two 8 lb boneless butts from Costco and rubbed them with Oak Ridge Secret Weapon.  I did not use any added liquid throughout the cook (no injection, spray, marinade, or liquid in the pan).  I trimmed off most of the fat cap and cooked them "trimmed" fat side up.  Things went pretty much according to plan. Egg maintained 350 dome, 325ish grid for the the first stage.  At a little over 3 hours in, they were a little below 160 internal temp.  I went ahead and wrapped them tightly and put them back on.  The egg got a little hot because I left it open too long while wrapping.  Dome temp was probably close to 400 when I put them on but I shut things down and got it settled back to 350 pretty quickly.  I was really surprised to see just how fast the temp rose.  They actually finished a little early- I think the total time was about 4 1/2 hours to get to 200 IT.  I held them wrapped for a couple of hours before I pulled them.

My observation is the meat was super tender.  Lots of liquid was trapped inside the foil, so it was as moist as can be.  On the downside, there was not really any bark (it was just soft and mushy) and not quite as much smoke flavor as I would like.  It was still a success and I would do it again, but a few things I would do differently:
  • For starters, I will do a much better job of trimming the fat next time, and cook fat side down.  With the shorter time, I think the melting fat prevented my bark to set.  With this method- you just don't need that fat.  
  • When I foiled them, I could see the bark had not set.  Next time, rather than a fixed time; I would cook them until the bark has set somewhat. 
  • I think I would consider starting out a little lower, and "ramp up" to 350.  Give them a little more time in the smoke. 
  • When I pulled the meat- I dumped the meat/juice from the foil into the pan.  As mentioned, there was  great deal of liquid in the foil.  Next time I might leave behind some of the liquid (or reserve for a sauce). 
I'm not sure that I am converted to the turbo method yet, but I do plan to play with it.  It is great to know that if you decide at 11 AM you want pulled pork for dinner that night you have the option ;)


Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 

Comments

  • GQuizGQuiz Posts: 593
    I turboed some butts this weekend, too. 2 7 pounders, boneless, from Costco. 4.5 hours at 400 dome, 330 grate over pans filled with apple juice. No spritzing. Fat side up. Did not trim. Perfect. Almost... I need to season a day before and try it. Used Hickory chunks with Stubbs lump. I got a great bark. Nice and juicy. I pulled at 195 IT. I love being an Egghead.
    image.jpg
    3264 x 2448 - 3M

    XL BGE; Schertz TX by way of Stow OH. #egghead4life
  • 500500 Posts: 1,182
    edited February 2013
    I Turbo-ed for the Super Bowl.  I did not foil.  Happy with the results; 350* for 5 hours on a 7# bone in Butt.  TFC for 2 hours; tasty.  I had bark.  I think foiling killed your bark.  Smoke was present but not as much as I may have liked. Everybody says rest for an hour.  But I like the taste of the Butt better if I'm up against the timeline for when we plan to eat.  If I can hit the 195* mark and pull within a half hour, I like the taste and texture better than resting for 3 hours.  I think the bark is much better also, as it seems to soften quite a bit in the FTC stage.
    image
    Large BGE; Midlothian, Virginia
    I like Pig Butts and I can not lie.
    "Barbecue is a journey, one meal at a time."
  • GQuizGQuiz Posts: 593
    500, that looks sweet.

    XL BGE; Schertz TX by way of Stow OH. #egghead4life
  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 4,484
    Those both look great.  I do think I will consider simply skipping the foil or wait longer to foil.  

    I am curious to hear from people who foil...what do you do with all the juice left in the foil?  Dump it in the pan with the butt, or remove the but and leave the juice behind? 


    Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 
  • I wonder if using butcher paper instead of foil would help get the results you want without softening the bark. This method has worked well for me when doing briskets.
    LBGE and Mini
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 5,018
    Those both look great.  I do think I will consider simply skipping the foil or wait longer to foil.  

    I am curious to hear from people who foil...what do you do with all the juice left in the foil?  Dump it in the pan with the butt, or remove the but and leave the juice behind? 
    I haven't turbo-ed any butts on the Egg yet, but I've done a few in the past. I found that the results were good, and the savings in time was considerable, but overall I prefer a butt done lo n slo. The turbo butts didn't seem to develop a great bark, and the smoke flavor was not as good as a butt done overnight. Also, with turbo butts and ribs the fat doesn't seem to render quite as well vs lo n slo. However, the turbo method has you eating much quicker!

    GQuiz said:
    I turboed some butts this weekend, too. 2 7 pounders, boneless, from Costco. 4.5 hours at 400 dome, 330 grate over pans filled with apple juice. No spritzing. Fat side up. Did not trim. Perfect. Almost... I need to season a day before and try it. Used Hickory chunks with Stubbs lump. I got a great bark. Nice and juicy. I pulled at 195 IT. I love being an Egghead.
    Sorry to go off on a tangent here, but how did you like the Stubbs lump? Used their briqs for a long time and loved them. Picked up a couple of bags of the lump when I heard that Costco was selling it.

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 4,484
    Feel free to go on a tangent!  I would also like to hear about the Stubbs lump.  $17 for 34#.  If my Costco carries it I am definitely planning on trying it. 



    Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 
  • GQuizGQuiz Posts: 593
    CaliKing. I was pleased with it. A lot of moderate to large pieces. I haven't gotten so scientific to write down times, but it was burning clean in about 20 minutes. After a five hour cook, I'd used around a third of what was in the pit. Heckuva bargain. SWMBO doesn't like it because the bag takes up too much space. I'll grab another bag this week before it's gone. Walmart has it. If my memory is correct, it was $7 for 12 lbs.

    XL BGE; Schertz TX by way of Stow OH. #egghead4life
  • GQuizGQuiz Posts: 593
    SmokeyPitt, when you cooked your boneless from Costco, did the part where the bone was pulled kinda rise up as if it were puffing? About midway through my cook, it seemed like it was rising. I cooked fat side up. I think the fat expanded and then rendered. But it just looked weird, almost sticking up like rock of Gibraltar. But from my final pic, you could see it settled down. Just curious.

    XL BGE; Schertz TX by way of Stow OH. #egghead4life
  • Don't know if you'd call 8 hours turbo or not, but I did one 9 lb bone-in @325, no foil and no liquids.  Came out great.  Did it for MIL's B-day and relatives were fighting over who got to take leftovers home.  That's the second I've done that way and probably will be the way I go in the future.  On the grill at 8AM, off at 4PM, FTC until 5:30, pulled then devoured. 

    Damascus, VA.  Friendliest town on the Appalachian Trail.

    LBGE Aug 2012, SBGE Feb 2014

  • SmokeyPittSmokeyPitt Posts: 4,484
    GQuiz said:
    SmokeyPitt, when you cooked your boneless from Costco, did the part where the bone was pulled kinda rise up as if it were puffing? About midway through my cook, it seemed like it was rising. I cooked fat side up. I think the fat expanded and then rendered. But it just looked weird, almost sticking up like rock of Gibraltar. But from my final pic, you could see it settled down. Just curious.
    I didn't notice anything rising, however I sort of "sutured" up that end of the butt with a couple of skewers.  I usually tie the boneless butts but I was out of twine.  


    Which came first the chicken or the egg?  I egged the chicken and then I ate his leg. 
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