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My butt... the Elder Whiz version

abundellabundell Posts: 57
edited 2:53AM in EggHead Forum
Since there's nothing left to do now that my butt is in the egg, I got to thinkin'. Ted Williams used to say, "if you don't think too good, don't think too much", but that didn't stop me.

I went to Costco and when I said pork butt/pulled pork, the butcher there sold me an 11 lb. boneless pork shoulder. I opened it up and there were two pieces. I did the Elder Ward/Whiz fire with the large chunks on the bottom and used the chimney and the fist of hickory. Using a plate setter. No pan of water. I put on some Elder Ward rub and I put the butt in the egg as soon as I dumped the chimney coals. I had planned to use a V-rack, but couldn't find it. So the butt is sitting in a foil pan. (And that's the one thing I'm maybe not liking. My preference would to have the butt raised or over a drip pan. But the pan keeps the two pieces together... more like a single piece... which seemed like a good idea.)

I thought about the Elder temp of 195. And I thought about the Whiz temp of 220-250. After 2 hours, I'm kind of dialed into about 220 and liking it.

So here's my question...

Since you're cookin' this thing dead, do these little variations really change the end result? I can imagine there's a benefit to not lifting the lid and keeping a consistent temp, but if one guy is saying forget the water and another is saying go ahead and use it, if one of them were really right, wouldn't they both say it? If 195 was the right temp, no one would say 220-250.

Ok... I'm done thinkin'... back to drinkin'.

Comments

  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 10,525
    Well, I'm confused. Haven't read Ward's method in a while, but I recall it's very similar to what I've always done. Dome temp for the egg should be 250°. Pull the meat off when it reaches 195°. Platesetter, legs up. Drip pan (no water) sitting on the PS. Grid on the PS legs, shoulder directly on the grid above the drip pan, not in one.

    I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead. Not sick, not wounded... dead.

                                                      Woody Allen

    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

  • GrumpaGrumpa Posts: 861
    This will be interesting :whistle:
  • As CQ said, You will be a while doing an 11# butt at 220.

    Steve

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 5,361
    The main advantage to cooking with a higher dome temperature is that the fire us less likely to go out. Or, at least you will have more time to catch it before the fire goes out.

    Also, early in the cook, a dome temp of 220 will mean the grill temp, if raised, is about 195.

    The balance one is trying to find doing lo-n-slo is getting the heat into the meat at a high enough temperature that the connective tissue gelatinizes while keeping the temp low enough that all the moisture does not escape the meat.

    2 5.5 pieces of butt are a reasonable size to allow them to be in that balance anywhere between 195 (as hot as you want the meat to be) and 250 (hot enough to make a really crisp bark, and retain some moisture along with a smooth feeling from the created gelatin.)

    You are going to want to find a way to raise the butts. They will render out a pool of fat, mixed with any sugar in the rub. The bottoms will likely turn into a layer of pork fat taffy.
  • If 195 was the right temp, no one would say 220-250.

    195 internal butt temp

    I start out with dome temp 200-225; it generally rises as the butt(s) cook...should be around 250 towards then last hours of the cook...if it gets up to 300, not to worry ;)
    a good estimate, at those temps, is dome temp is about 25 degrees higher than the grate temp...

    are you using an internal probe to keep track of the butt temp???
  • Well, that got MY butt moving.

    I was half-thinking... what could possibly go wrong leaving the butt to marinate in it's own juices with a drip pan?

    PORK FAT TAFFY!

    So I improvised. I had the butts resting in one of those disposable aluminum foil pans. I slipped a second foil pan on the platesetter and then poked a bunch of holes in the top pan with a barbecue fork. All that taffy dripped into the lower pan.

    Thanks for the wake-up call!

    Other than that, it's looking good.
  • Well, that got MY butt moving.

    I was half-thinking... what could possibly go wrong leaving the butt to marinate in it's own juices with a drip pan?

    PORK FAT TAFFY!

    So I improvised. I had the butts resting in one of those disposable aluminum foil pans. I slipped a second foil pan on the platesetter and then poked a bunch of holes in the top pan with a barbecue fork. All that taffy dripped into the lower pan.

    Thanks for the wake-up call!

    Other than that, it's looking good.
  • Carolina QCarolina Q Posts: 10,525
    Why don't you just get rid of the original drip pan? This is a lousy pic, but hopefully you can see what goes where.

    4405279718_b3b8b4e0a3_b.jpg

    I will not eat oysters. I want my food dead. Not sick, not wounded... dead.

                                                      Woody Allen

    Michael 
    Central Connecticut 

  • gdenbygdenby Posts: 5,361
    Good idea, I think. I speak from experience. Pork butts are not often done where I live, and so didn't think there would be a problem. By the end of the cook, the juices and fat and rub had cooked down to a viscous mess, and the bottom 1/4 inch of butt was a gooey, tough slab.

    The rest was O.K., so not much of a loss.
  • HossHoss Posts: 14,600
    220-250=Egg temp for the cook.195= Internal Temp of pork butt when it's done. :)
  • Well... woke up this morning and it's done.

    Looks and tastes great. Thanks for all the comments and suggestions.
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