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Pulled Pork- Texture Question

GrasshopperGrasshopper Posts: 108
edited 8:17AM in EggHead Forum
Hey i just got done with my Mother's Day Dinner. I cooked 2 8.5 pound Boston Butts. About a 16 hour cook at 220 to 250, with pushing 300 toward the last hour to hour and a half.
Dinner was good, this is not by first butt cook, but here is the question:
In pulling or shredding the pork i noticed different textures in the butt. Some pulling or shredding easy and some not so easy - is this common? Also the temperature, the range in the same butt would vary from 10 to 15 degrees. Is this also common?? The cookbook i got from Dr. BBQ states PPork is done at 190, the receipe off the Dizzy Pig site wants 200 degrees. But even with different parts of the butt registering different temps it becomes a tricky cook.
What am i doing wrong to have this happen OR this this normal??
Thanks,
Grasshopper

Comments

  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,773
    Grasshopper,[p] Some of the muscle in the Butt is more dense then other parts. Yes the texture can and does change.[p] The pork closer to the bone will be higher in temp because of the bone. You want to take it's temp as close to the center of the meat as possible. You are shooting for anywhere between 190-200. It's really a personal preference, but much beyond 200 and you might as well feed it to your babies. It will be mush.
  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    7c583015.jpg
    <p />Grasshopper,[p]Butt aren't that tricky. You will get more comfortable after you get some more pit time. Try giving the blade bone a wiggle from time to time after 185°, once it slips out clean you are there. When using a thermometer, your biggest temp swing to the high side can be if your probe is in a pocket of fat, or too close to the bone. Always pays to take a couple of readings.[p]~thirdeye~

    Happy Trails
    ~thirdeye~

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • thirdeye,[p]Not sure if you will remember this but the pic, is it showing the butt when it cooked face up or face down? The exterior looks awfully moist which I get on the bottom (that is on the grate) but the top tends to be a little hard and crusty in some places. I tend to pick and choose which parts are tossed. Just wondering if you had a method to keep the top moist throughout.[p]Howard
  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    PorkBone.jpg
    <p />Howard,[p]To be perfectly honest I don't remember the specifics of that cook. But if you promise not to make fun of this quick John Madden sketch I made from one of my pork steak pictures, maybe I can answer your question. I have cut this pork steak from a butt, right through the blade bone.[p]The blade bone is flat on one side and and has a branch on the other side forming a Y shape of sorts. As you can see the flat side is inboard or toward the body of the butt and the branch points towards the fat cap. (I've boned out a butt or two and you learn to follow the flat side of that bone first with your knife, then bone out the branch)[p]In that butt picture notice that the branch is pointing up leading me to believe that in the picture the fat cap is up. Okay, here is where I start guesstimating..... I start cooking a butt fat down but I will turn a butt once or twice. If the color starts to get too dark I will tent it or even wrap in foil to protect the color. Whether I use foil during the cook or not, once I foil and go to the cooler, the fat side is up. I'll bet a nickel that I took it out of the cooler, opened up the foil, and moved it to that platter (without flipping it over) because that sucker is about ready to fall apart.[p]7c583015.jpg[p]Whew, in other words, yes. You are looking at the surface that was most likely down for most of the cook. I would have used a tent to control the color / bark on the opposite side.[p]~thirdeye~

    Happy Trails
    ~thirdeye~

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
  • thirdeye,[p]Cool! Thanks for the indepth response. So, can I assume when you tent to control color, in essence, you are controlling the crunchiness (best word I can think of right now) of the bark. That has always been my problem, is the top has a hard bark while underneath is softer.[p]Thanks again for the info.,
    Howard

  • thirdeyethirdeye Posts: 7,428
    Howard,[p]I think that is pretty much it. Tenting, or shielding from the bottom is very effective. I'm also a baster and use that to my advantage if needed.[p]~thirdeye~

    Happy Trails
    ~thirdeye~

    Barbecue is not rocket surgery
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