Big Green Egg - EGGhead Forum - The Ultimate Cooking Experience...
Welcome to the EGGhead Forum - a great place to visit and packed with tips and EGGspert advice! You can also join the conversation and get more information and amazing kamado recipes by following Big Green Egg at:

Facebook  |  Twitter  |  Instagram  |  Pinterest  |  Youtube  |  Vimeo
Share your photos by tagging us and using the hashtag #EGGhead4Life.

In Atlanta? Come visit Big Green Egg headquarters, including our retail showroom, the History of the EGG Museum and Culinary Center!  3786 DeKalb Technology Parkway, Atlanta, GA 30340.

Questions about my low and slow butt

Steve_in_MdSteve_in_Md Posts: 15
edited 8:21AM in EggHead Forum
Well actually, it ain't about my butt -- in fact it isn't actually a butt; it's two boneless pork shoulders I picked up from COSTCO last night.[p]I got them in the egg at 9pm at 200 steady. Internal temp of the larger of the two shoulders was 104 when I turned in at about 1230. This morning at 530 the egg had creeped up in temp to about 220 and the internal was at 158. Made so adjustments to the daisy wheel and then went back to bed. I checked 'em again at 8am. Temp of egg was at 200 again and the shoulder is at 158.[p]First question: I've noted concern regarding the 40-140 rule of thumb for safe meat. The internal of the shoulder was at 42 when I started. Considering that it took at almost 4 hours to get to 104 before I went to bed and who knows how long after to get it up above 140, is this pork going to be safe to eat?[p]Second question: Given that the shoulder has been setting at 158 for at least 3 hours, am I seeing the platau or is it just really slow in getting above that due to the egg being at 200 (I thought the platau was at 180 or so)?[p]Third question: Will I be eating this for dinner (6pm-ish)or do I still have a really long way to go before the internal hits the magic 200?[p]Thanks muchly in advance for any advice.[p]


  • eggoreggor Posts: 777
    Steve_in_Md,[p]Well its kinda confusing, I still cant figure why someone called the front shoulder da 'BUTT', but i did take and we're stuck with it now.LOL[p]Are you sure its boneless? The bone won't be very big and this hunk of meat won't have a bone like you would see in a ham.[p]Scott

  • Steve_in_MdSteve_in_Md Posts: 15
    I don't think there's any bone in 'em. The COSTCO pack contained two of 'em and they had it labeled as boneless pork shoulder. I had to tie them up a bit because where they cut the bone out left big flappy peices that just drooped out over the V-rack.

  • wrobswrobs Posts: 109
    Good morning Steve_in_Md,
    I think the meat is OK. The egg temperature of 220 is where you want for this type of cook. If you think about it, the internal will be somewhat less than 140 for some time when you first start out so I wouldn't be too concerned. A plateau of 158 is well within the ranges I have seen and its not unusual to see 2-3 hours, especially if its a big hunk of meat that has alot of collagen to render through. As far as eating at 6pm, my experience is once you get through the plateau, things speed up rather quickly so you want to keep a close eye on it. What weight were the shoulders? You can usually figure on 2 hours per pound... HTH

  • locolongballlocolongball Posts: 414
    Your plateau is around 160. I’ve had some plateau in the low 150s, not a big deal. You are just cooking at a really low temp, which is good. However, you find a lot of eggors that stay in the 225, and 250 ranges. This will help you get up to the “safe zone” a little faster. Don’t worry about it, you are still good. I’ve done maybe 50 pork butts with a cooking temp in the low 200s, it took 5hrs to get past the safe zone… Yep, the family is still kicking! Remember, it’s going to take every bit of 24hrs at that low of a temp to cook the butt. If you are 3-4hrs away from eating time, you can kick the temp up to 275 or even 300. You’ll have a little more fat in the meat, but it will it will still taste awesome!

  • Steve_in_MdSteve_in_Md Posts: 15
    Thanks wrobs,[p]The total weight of the two butts was almost 13 lbs. The one is bigger than the other -- I'd guess it's probably closer to 8 lbs -- that's the one I stuck the temp probe in.
  • wrobswrobs Posts: 109
    If we figure 2 hrs/lb, then 16 hours for the bigger of the two... somewhere around 1pm??? You also might want to probe the smaller one to check its internal... the last time I cooked several butts, the smaller of the four (~7lbs) was done a couple of hours before the larger ones.
    I think you will be good to go by 6pm.
    Have you increased above 158?

  • HaggisHaggis Posts: 998
    Steve_in_Md,[p]I was happy to see your question because I'll be doing the nearly identical cook tonight. Two Cryovac'd boneless butts from Costco, 14 pounds total, slightly different sizes (maybe 6 and 8 pounds.) Using dizzy dust and a touch of Jamaican Firewalk along with mustard. I won't tie the flapping ends - will just tuck them under, per Fishlessman who advised: "there is no need to tie, just put the cut side down and tuck the loose edges underneath. . . . i usually start those at 275 dome and drop the temp down to 225 after about 3 or 4 hours" Only thing I noticed with your approach is that the temp in the smaller one should be your primary measure since it'll likely be finished first. [p]Please post progress reports and results! Thanks!

  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    there are no bacteria IN the meat.[p]the interior being between 40 and 140 for longer than four hours is not the issue, since there are no bacteria IN the muscle.[p]they contaminate the meat when they contact the surface of the meat during butchering.[p]when you use rub (with salt), it kills the stuff on the surface. ...even though you need to wash the surface anyway, the salt is extra insurance.[p]then while you have it in the smoker, it is in an anaerobic environment. it's also 200 plus degrees. that means, there is nothing on the surface of the meat which is going to be worrisome. it won't be between 40-140 very long at all, and has been attacked by salt, and lept in an environment (no or very low oxygen). [p]couple that with the fact that again, there is none of this bacteria actually WITHIN the meat, and you have a very safe, time-tested method of cooking.[p]people seem to forget that this is exactly WHY foods were cold smoked, and in this case, hot smoked. it is a methos which is safe. they didn't starrt doing this because they liked hickory smoke, that came after....[p]there's a very logical reason this works.[p]the FDA guidelines are an attempt at UNIVERSAL applications, and they are VERY conservative.[p]they are meant to cover home-made mayo out in the sun at an old age home cookout. [p]that is not even close to what we have here.
    a rule is no good if we don't understand the reason behind it.[p]always wear a seatbelt in your car, for example. unless it has just plunged into a lake...

    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
Sign In or Register to comment.
Click here for Forum Use Guidelines.