Tuesday, July 23, 2013

I like big butts and I cannot lie

With apologies to Sir Mix-A-Lot. (Can I be Sir Smoke-A-Lot?) I need to thank someone for letting me leave my motorcycle on their premises until I can come up back with a trailer to fetch it. Of course the first thing that comes to mind is BBQ! I hastened to my local Sams and bought four butts totalling about 42 lb.

Weather is hot at 83°F and sunny with winds light at about 5 mph.

I used my standard rub recipe as follows:
  • 2 Tbsp black Pepper (whole)
  • 2 Tbsp Rosemary (dry, whole)
  • 1 Tbsp Coriander (whole)
  • 1 Tbsp mustard seed
  • 2 Tbsp Hungarian Paprika.
  • 1 Tbsp Adobo seasoning
  • 1 Tbsp powdered onion
  • 2 Tsp Cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tbsp Cumin
  • 2 Tbsp powdered garlic
  • 2 Tbsp Kosher salt
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
Butts have been rubbed and are sitting in the kitchen while I set up the cooker.

This cook will be done on the 22.5 Weber Smokey Mountain (WSM) using Royal Oak Briquettes. Additional smoke provided by hickory, oak and box elder. The water pan is foiled. I've embedded the smoking wood chunks in the bed of briquettes and lit a fill mini-chimney of briquettes, While they were still starting, I set the chimney on the charcoal bet which ignites some of the fuel under the chimney while the rest of the charcoal in the chimney gets started.  I'll be using the ET-732 to measure temperature at the top grate of the cooker.

timetemp comment
1:15 PM
A fully lit mini-chimney of charcoal was dumped on the bed and the smoker has been closed up. Three bottom vents are left about 1/3 open. (Top vent is fully open as it always is until the cook is complete.)
Meat on! Dome temp is about 275° and smoke looks good! Oops, meat probe is sitting on the SS table of my Performer and reads 122°!
2:0561°/246°/240° (meat/grate/lid)Good start! Well... late start. I'll be up late tonight or very early in the morning.
4:34133°/262°/275°Three hours and no adjustments or fiddling needed!
7:05167°/221°/2005:30 w/out touching the cooker - not bad! I just stirred the coals to knock the ash off. They're a bit more than half consumed.  Minutes later the temperature is already starting to recover.
7:44169°/228°/?Cooker not really going where I want so I'll add some fuel - threw in some left over lump and briquettes from the other cookers and a little more smoking wood. Opened one bottom vent full.
8:27171°/239°/220°Seems to be back on track.
9:56183°/264°/240°Really smells good!
10:45190°/259°/235°Opened the cover and the bones still feel pretty firm as I try to wiggle the bone. I picked one up and a small piece stuck to the grill (for some cook's treat - really good!) They still need a little more time.
11:24194°/252°/225°The bone did not wiggle but I declare them done. While trying to pick them up, they were falling apart! The little bites that stick to the grill are particularly good. Now they need to rest. I closed the fire up mostly, hoping to bank it to save some coals to start tomorrow's fire in the stick burner. May not work as it looks like heavy rain is just moving in.

Results: Flavor excellent. Texture a bit firm. It could have been easier to pull. Perhaps I should have allowed it to cook a little longer.

What to do differently next time: Give the bone wiggle test another try.

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