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Pulled beef and spin-off foods

edited 6:27AM in EggHead Forum
Following the advice of others here, I made some excellent pulled beef last weekend. Recipes at the end. I bought a fresh (never frozen) 5.5 pound eye-of-round cut. I put dry-rub on it about 24 hours in advance and wrapped it in plastic. I stablized the Egg at about 225, then put the meat on a V-rack over a drip pan, which I kept filled with various mainstream American beers left over from a party (anything lighter than Sam Adams lager is strictly a cooking-beer in my house). I also poured some beer over the meat whenever I refilled the pan to help maintain the moisture of the beef.[p]I use a Redi-Check Maverick remote thermometer. I put the smoker probe into the dome hole (perfect fit), and of course the food probe goes into the meat. About the only thing I don't like about these is the range is only about 50 feet, and it drops to about 25 feet about halfway through the battery life. But they're great for monitoring, and they have some cool-sounding hi/low alarm features which I admittedly don't know how to use, heh. (My wife threw out the box with instructions before I got around to reading them...)[p]I let the meat heat up to about 170, then as described by others, I pulled it off, double-wrapped it in foil, and put it back into the smoker. I think next time I'll add some liquid inside the foil, I've seen some people do that, and it would probably help with the moisture. But I let it run up to 205, then pulled it out shredded it with a fork. Honestly it was so perfect at that point it was easy to shred by hand, although it was a bit hot for that.[p]Finally, I poured some homemade vinegar-based sauce on the shredded beef and served with some fairly typical BBQ sides (baked beans, potato salad, etc.) and enjoyed the many compliments -- even from a good friend who is a rather well-respected professional chef who runs the kitchens for a major local golf resort. Can't beat that![p]Here is the dry rub recipe I used. It's about twice as much as I needed for a 5-pounder, but with dry rubs in particular I like to make a lot at once since it'll keep indefinitely.[p]1/4 cup paprika (I prefer the very hot paprika)
2 tbs ancho chili powder
2 tbs coarse kosher salt
2 tbs brown sugar (spread on a cookie sheet and dry it out first)
2 tbs ground cumin
1 tbs ground black pepper
1 tbs ground cayenne pepper
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp fine-ground oregano powder[p]This is the recipe for the vinegar BBQ sauce I use. It makes just enough for about 4 lbs of shredded beef (which is about what you'll have after cooking a 5.5 pounder). Note that this is about half as much salt as I normally use for this sauce since the dry rub also contains quite a bit of salt.[p]2 cups cider vinegar
2 tbs sea salt
2 tbs brown sugar (don't bother drying this)
1 tsp chipolte chili powder
4 whole jalapenos sliced thin (hot, and I leave in the seeds)
several drops of your favorite hot sauce[p]Bring to a boil, simmer for about 20-30 minutes, then skim off the jalapenos and seeds. Let cool and refrigerate.[p]Particularly if you use hot paprika, the outside of the meat will end up being very spicy, but overall it won't be "hot" in the least -- not even with that spicy-sounding BBQ sauce. Personally I prefer my foods more spicy than this, so I'll be playing with the sauce recipe a little more in the future, or maybe I'll add a spicy basting sauce to the process.[p]One of the great things about cooking on the Egg is being able to use any left-over meats in other foods later. A few days ago I used the meat to make tacos, adding just a little paprika, water, and chili powder, then mixing with refried beans and some diced green chiles. And just this morning I made huevos rancheros, in a fashion similar to a breakfast I had at the diner downstairs from the YMCA in downtown San Diego many years ago. I mixed fresh-chopped cilantro, some diced onion, diced jalapenos, and some hot sauce, lightly browned it in a pan with some chili oil, then whipped up some eggs and milk, scrambled the veggies with the eggs, and near the end dropped in some shredded beef. Served with bacon and toast, it made a pretty great (and very spicy) breakfast.[p]And finally, a tip for cooling these sauces if you have a Jenn-Air or other downdraft cooktop: I can take a sauce like this from being so hot you can't touch the pot to cool enough to hold in your bare hand (or more importantly, cool enough for the fridge) in less than 10 minutes: put the pot over the downdraft and set the fan for high. Cooling time drops from 30 or 40 minutes to only about 8 minutes this way.

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