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Thoughts on pulled pork...

I did my third Boston butt yesterday/today. Elder Ward posted a wonderful description/dissertation on steps, and I wanted to clarify a few things I've learned over the past few months. Some of these points were clarified in response to my earlier post for help on internal temp. Thanks, guys, for the help.[p]Anyway, 1) I just dump the lump in -- no stacking, sorting, etc. Works just fine. 2) I add 3 fist-sized lumps-o-hickory. The past few times, I've cooked at 200 degrees or less dome temp, and I've pulled the Butt at about 170 degrees internal, as I never got close to the 200 recommended by Elder Ward. This evening, however, I kicked the dome temp up to nearly 300 and got the internal temp up to 200.[p]JESUS!! And I mean that in a relgious manner, as I had no idea what a difference 170 vs. 200 makes!!! 200 is indeed the target, but you have to hit it slow. So, next time, I'll cook at 225 until I hit 160 or so internal, then I'll kick it up to 275 or so until I hit the magic number of 200. By the way, after reaching 200, I put foil over the Butt while it was still on the rack/drip pan, put a cutting board over the foiled half, turned it upside down to get it off the rack, and stuck it in a paper bag for 1 hour, as suggested by the barbeque book from Cook's Illustrated.[p]This was the best Butt by far. Didn't even need sauce.[p]Hope this helps the next "newbie" w/a Boston Butt! Elder Ward's posting is right on track; however, my experience confirms Tim M's observation that his suggested cooking temp of 200 is low. But, (butt?) the rub is great, as are the side dishes.[p]--DSS


  • BBQfan1BBQfan1 Posts: 562
    David: Yes, you've found a real treat in pullable pork. The only thing I would adjust on your new method, is to hold off on the kicking up of the dome temperature until the meat's internal temp is 170-175 rather than the 160 you are thinking of using as your bumping point. The plateau probably lasts through to that 170-175 mark and you want to 'milk' that plateau for all it's worth without drying out the meat. It is during this important plateau time that the heat energy is going into breaking down collagens and connective tissues etc and you don't want to rush that if at all possible. Otherwise you are on your way to mastering this truly wonderful cut of meat.

  • David S. Saliba,[p] Yes, you are catching on. If you check the archives, I think you'll find that these principals have been through here more than once -- just gets down to whether the archives are working at a given moment! Anyway, if it helps, I usually go low and slow until around 170F internal, then kick it up to about 275F dome. I always go indirect over the plate setter and a drip pan. Once I hit about 190F internal, I remove the butt and put it in a Reynolds foil "Hot Bag". I then use a baster to suck some juice out of the drip pan and squirt it in the bag with the meat. I seal it and let it rest for a while. For the Eggfests in MD, I put the bags of meat in a cooler with some old towels. The butts stay hot for hours that way![p]MikeO
  • HuckHuck Posts: 110
    <p />MikeO,
    I can second your approach to the perfect pulled pork. I just did this shoulder and it took 26 hours. At around hour 23, it hit 170 internal and I put the dome temp up between 225 to 250 (it moved around some and kept creeping up) until internal of 198 degrees. My favorite eatin's: A great big Texas sized bun with Q sauce, cole slaw, and about half a pound of the pulled pork. Another note, the shoulder seems to be less greasy. And as you can see, there's a LOT more meat!

  • BBQfan1BBQfan1 Posts: 562
    I did up some pulled pork for a luncheon my wife's company was having, and I pulled it and took it there in the same style container as pictured in your post. I sauced it lightly after shredding and tossed together in the Tupperware container. Not sure if you do this, or have done it, but one of those Helpful Hints from Heloise things: if saucing meat in one of those plastic containers; spray the inside first with Pam or non-stick spray and the sauce won't discolour the container nearly as much.
    Sorry, just saw your picture and thought I'd throw this little household hint out there...

  • HuckHuck Posts: 110
    Hey!, thanks for the tip! Here's one back atcha: If you see those denture cleaner fizz tablets on sale for cheap in bulk, get some. Right before you go to bed, pour a glass of water in the toilet bowl to raise the level an inch. Throw one or two of those denture cleaner tabs in there. A swirl of the brush in the morning and zip, she's as clean as your teeth! (I wouldn't keep my teeth in there, they may get flushed or at worst leave a [email protected]$ty taste in your mouth!) [p]I know this isn't food related, but hey man, it'll give you more time for preparing something for the BGE! My wife's really sick and I'm the housekeeper so every little thing helps. I'm gonna try that Pam tip very next time.

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