Stubborn Butts

Discussion in 'Pork' started by homebrew & bbq, Nov 5, 2007.

  1. homebrew & bbq

    homebrew & bbq Smoking Fanatic

    I started smoking 4 pork butts at about 5:30 A.M. on Saturday. It was kind of chilly and windy so the smoker temps didn't make it above 200 very often but was almost always between 185 and 200. By 7:30 P.M. the meat was only at 150 give or take a little. I had other things I needed to take care of so I wrapped the butts in foil and they went into the frig overnight.

    About 11:30 A.M. on Sunday, they went into a 250 degree oven to finish. It took about 4 hours to get them back up to 150. Finally, at 12:30 A.M. the last butt reached 205.

    By my count that is about 23 hours of cooking (excluding the time to get back up to 150 in the oven). This seems like an unusually long time for butts to get done. They were roughly 7-9 pounds each.

    Any thoughts?
  2. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Temp was just too low.

    I probably would have moved them to the oven much sooner and skipped the fridge part.
  3. bbq bubba

    bbq bubba Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    So your saying you had 4 butt's sitting in a smoker between 40 and 140 degree's for 14 hr's??? Sorry but i'd be tossing those in the garbage......
    Meat sat in the danger zone for WAY to long, wouldn't take a chance!![​IMG]
  4. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'm with bbq bubba on that one, spoiled meat can get you really sick. ER's and hospitals are no place to be. That is why I sometimes won't wait for meat to come to room temp. before putting it on the smoke, just put it in cold and wait a little longer.
  5. homebrew & bbq

    homebrew & bbq Smoking Fanatic

    No, the meat wasn't in the danger zone that long.

    It came up to 150 and then plateaued there. That's where it spent most of the time in the smoker. It went into the oven directly from the fridge once it got to 150 stayed there a while then seemed to plateau between 170 and 180 again.

    I don't think these butts were in the danger zone much longer than others I've done before but when they got to 150 they didn't budge for a loooong time.

    Sorry I didn't explain that more fully in the first post.
  6. dionysus

    dionysus Meat Mopper OTBS Member

    I know butts can be stubborn at times, I have had them take up to 18 hours myself, but I seem to remember another discussion along these same lines, excessive cooks times where the cook as been interrupted and then started again later. Once leads to interesting discussion with plenty of excellent theories and advice, but twice .... I can't help but wonder if the stopping and starting the cook has anything to do with it ..... Anybody else have any thoughts on this?
  7. squeezy

    squeezy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Reheating is one thing .... but starting ... stopping ...cooling ...then continue cooking should only be done in emergencies (time)
    Can't be good for the process.
    My humble opinion!
  8. deejaydebi

    deejaydebi Smoking Guru

    I would think after spending the night in the frigdge it'd take all day to get them up to tepmperature again. Just like from the start - they're ice cold to the bone again.

    If you happen to have to run of again you could always put them in a warm oven at 200 degrees wrapped tightly in plastic wrap and on a platter or a pan or something to catch the juices. I do that alot - I don't do all nighters! That's what my ovens for - [​IMG]
  9. homebrew & bbq

    homebrew & bbq Smoking Fanatic

    I didn't have a lot of choice on Saturday night. I'm a pastor and there are things that have to be done on Saturday so my ducks are in a row for Sunday morning. I just didn't have time to pay close enough attention to the meat any longer. [​IMG] (Guess I didn't plan very well.)

    I did keep a close eye on the temps on both Saturday and Sunday and I feel pretty comfortable with how long the meat was below 140. I just haven't had any get stuck between 150 and 160 for that long before. I've only been smoking a little over a year so I thought maybe some of you "old pros" might have some wisdom about the situation.

    Thanks for your responses. [​IMG]

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