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Pulled Pork questions

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#1 Stout_fan

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Posted 14 July 2022 - 03:15 PM

Well, gang, I'm on my second pork shoulder and I'm asking the pros here for a few tips. Seems the second one wasn't quite as good as the first and I'm wondering where I went wrong. A bit drier and less flavorful. The bark was rather hard. I'm guilty of changing too many variables although I kept the same rub:

On recommendation of several web sites on the second shoulder I:

did not dump shoulder in a pan of marinate overnight

did not use a pan of water in the smoker.

did not mop marinate over shoulder at halftime.

Stupidly thought I could improve the marinade by doing a reduction on it and wound up boiling off the acetic acid. That's what I injected into the shoulder.

 

So if you folks who have done this successfully please chime in with your best results / opinions on:

Immerse in marinade overnight

Inject marinade

mop marinade

pan of water in the smoker

50% vinegar in the marinade

2 hours per pound rate to 195 degree final internal temp.

 

I used hickory with a few chunks of mesquite. This is an electric smoker BTW with a PID controller & K type thermocouple I put together.

Seriously, what do you expect from a controls engineer?



#2 idajack

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Posted 14 July 2022 - 05:13 PM

I did 75 lbs last week for a church bbq and I’m doing 140lbs this weekend for a farm and freedom festival my sons in laws are holding
I’m pretty lazy, it’s pig meat after all, bust open the cryovac packaging and give it a quick rinse then toss it in a basic rub and let it sit about two hours to overnight.
Run the smoker at 275-300
Feed smoker a base of charcoal with chunks of hickory Oak and pecan, depends on the total mass of meat but 75lbs was eight bone in shoulders and took ten to twelve hours to hit 200-205. I test more by the texture of the meat, stick a fork in it and twist and it should shred easily.
While it’s cooking I spritz it with either apple juice and apple cider vinegar or ponzu sauce every hour or so.
pull it and pan it when it shreds, rest for an hour covered in foil and a towel
Then shred it using a kitchen aid mixer once it’s rested.
I’d guess that part of your dry issue was going strictly on temps, a lot of the moisture comes from the fat conversion that happens when it happens, anywhere from 195-205 and the subsequent rest.

#3 postSingularityHumanoid

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Posted 14 July 2022 - 06:33 PM

I did 75 lbs last week for a church bbq and I’m doing 140lbs this weekend for a farm and freedom festival my sons in laws are holding
I’m pretty lazy, it’s pig meat after all, bust open the cryovac packaging and give it a quick rinse then toss it in a basic rub and let it sit about two hours to overnight.
Run the smoker at 275-300
Feed smoker a base of charcoal with chunks of hickory Oak and pecan, depends on the total mass of meat but 75lbs was eight bone in shoulders and took ten to twelve hours to hit 200-205. I test more by the texture of the meat, stick a fork in it and twist and it should shred easily.
While it’s cooking I spritz it with either apple juice and apple cider vinegar or ponzu sauce every hour or so.
pull it and pan it when it shreds, rest for an hour covered in foil and a towel
Then shred it using a kitchen aid mixer once it’s rested.
I’d guess that part of your dry issue was going strictly on temps, a lot of the moisture comes from the fat conversion that happens when it happens, anywhere from 195-205 and the subsequent rest.


This covers all the bases. I use just apple cider vinegar.

#4 Dave in Indiana

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Posted 15 July 2022 - 06:45 AM

I try to keep it simple.  I slather in a binder (usually mustard) and then the rub.  Smoker at 325F.  On the rack uncovered for 3 hours - meat should get to 165F.  Then put the butt in a pan with a cup of apple juice and cover with heavy duty foil.  Then back in the smoker for 2 hours.  Then rest the butt in a cooler for 2 to 4 hours and shred.



#5 Stout_fan

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Posted 15 July 2022 - 04:48 PM

You guys run your smokers a lot hotter than the 250 degrees I was using. Besides requiring more time, is there a problem smoking at 250?



#6 postSingularityHumanoid

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Posted 15 July 2022 - 06:14 PM

You guys run your smokers a lot hotter than the 250 degrees I was using. Besides requiring more time, is there a problem smoking at 250?


Nope. It comes out great either way. I go high temp now though.

Edited by postSingularityHumanoid, 15 July 2022 - 06:17 PM.


#7 idajack

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Posted 15 July 2022 - 09:26 PM

Actually, I prefer a little hotter cook.
For a couple reasons, 1: the smoke off of the wood is a little cleaner at 300 degrees. 2: the bark may not be as deep as a slower smoke but between the smoke bring cleaner and less build time it seems to lead to a “smoother@ final product.
I’m not sure the anecdotal 225-250 temps really were meant for modern smokers, I run my 250 gallon reverse flow at 399-325 regularly and honestly it won’t run hotter due to the build characteristics
My WSM I’ll push to 350, the egg I’ll run at 400-450 just due to time shit.
All the food seems pretty equal, though customers seem to like the flavor off the big reverse flow, I like to think that’s due to the reverse flow being a great balance and that I built a good smoker but it’s probably because a big rig allows for error snd builds a killer bark

#8 Stout_fan

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Posted 17 July 2022 - 11:25 AM

Actually, I prefer a little hotter cook.
For a couple reasons, 1: the smoke off of the wood is a little cleaner at 300 degrees. 2: the bark may not be as deep as a slower smoke but between the smoke bring cleaner and less build time it seems to lead to a “smoother@ final product.
I’m not sure the anecdotal 225-250 temps really were meant for modern smokers, I run my 250 gallon reverse flow at 399-325 regularly and honestly it won’t run hotter due to the build characteristics
My WSM I’ll push to 350, the egg I’ll run at 400-450 just due to time shit.
All the food seems pretty equal, though customers seem to like the flavor off the big reverse flow, I like to think that’s due to the reverse flow being a great balance and that I built a good smoker but it’s probably because a big rig allows for error snd builds a killer bark

A big reverse flow 250 gallon smoker that YOU built. All I have to say is:

:ttiuwp:
 



#9 idajack

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Posted 17 July 2022 - 02:45 PM

A big reverse flow 250 gallon smoker that YOU built. All I have to say is:
:ttiuwp:

There are a few pics around somewhere but here ya go
694-F6544-D682-488-B-B188-DE54-C30-CCA3-

18-DF9498-6-D2-C-46-C5-AFCD-A4-CDA38-F40

092-B2-D65-65-E3-45-F8-BD34-2-C4-B2337-A

C8571-D4-D-0219-47-F0-90-E2-E7902-C52-F8

#10 postSingularityHumanoid

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Posted 17 July 2022 - 02:48 PM

Heat gun?

#11 idajack

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Posted 17 July 2022 - 08:34 PM

Heat gun?

Mag drill will an annular cutter drilling holes for thermometers in the door. It’s amazingly fast at punching 3/4” holes in 3/16 thick steel…
The thermometers are basically only good for determining if the heat is even side to side, I use a six probe wifi thermometer to monitor temps at the grate as well as in the meat.

#12 Genesee Ted

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Posted 18 July 2022 - 06:10 AM

Sick rig! I wish I had a need for something like that

#13 Stout_fan

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Posted 19 July 2022 - 05:57 AM

Serious smoker envy.

Thanks for posting the pics.



#14 idajack

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 05:24 PM

Sick rig! I wish I had a need for something like that

Wait, I’m supposed to “need” a trailer mounted rig?
Damn, if I’d known that I coulda saved like $1000 I spent building this thing…..
Lol, I guess I use it three or four times a year and could use it more if I put my mind to it but really it eats a lot of fuel and cooks a lot of meat so I use a smaller offset or an old traeger most of the time.
I do cook for weddings and church picnics etc or for friends as a gift, I never wanted to jump through all the hoops like brownie had to to make it a business, just a hobby really, if I charge money then I’ve gotta be legally compliant so….

#15 VolFan

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 05:27 PM

I'd like to hang out a week with Ida. Eat well, drink well and go Jeeping. 



#16 idajack

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 05:27 PM

FBA895-DA-4-BF4-4980-AAEA-83-DE36-C8-F6-

Drug it out to my son’s in-laws for a big potluck last weekend.
Let him do all the work and learn to cook with it

#17 postSingularityHumanoid

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 05:55 PM

Sick farmers tan!

#18 idajack

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 06:09 PM

Sick farmers tan!

Right?
I offered to see if dollar tree has spray tan but he declined…

#19 postSingularityHumanoid

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Posted 20 July 2022 - 06:15 PM

Right?
I offered to see if dollar tree has spray tan but he declined…


I recognize my own but I go from pale to REALLY pale.

#20 Brownbeard

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Posted 25 July 2022 - 05:24 PM

I always cook at 275-300. I get better results at higher temps.



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