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First real brisket attempt; pork butt and ABTs.

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

So I mentioned it in another thread, but I'm having some friends over in celebration of my rapidly advancing age, so I thought I'd fired up the smoker.  I started it all last night at about 1:00 with a brisket and a pork butt.  The butt just came off with an IT of 185 (I'm worried I might have over-done that.  I'll know when I start pulling it in an hour or so).  The brisket is at 177, where it's been holding for the last 3 hours or so.  I've been doing the toothpick test, and I think it's going to be pretty close.  I've got hungry friends coming over at 5:00, so I'm going to pull it off in about an hour, cooler it for an hour, then find out how well it worked. 


About 3 dozen ABTs went in an hour ago, and I've got a batch of Jeff's sauce to go with everything.  -It's my first time using that sauce recipe, and big ups to Jeff for that one.  That stuff's incredible.  I had to stop sampling it out of the sauce pan so there would still be some left when I had some meat to go with it.


It's seeming like it's all coming together nicely.  I've been taking Qview pics along the way, but my cable is in my desk so I can't upload until I get to work tomorrow.  I'll get Qview up then.


Thanks again to all the info everyone has put here.  It'd take me 15 years to learn on my own what I've learned from this site in a few months.

post #2 of 11

Thank you so much for joining us and allowing us to help!  I'd really like to see your fine work and delicious food, so please, post lots of Qview for us to drool over!  Thanks again for all your hard work and hope y'all enjoyed your meal, and... 



post #3 of 11

Sounds like it will work out fine.

Looking forward to the Qview biggrin.gif

post #4 of 11

Sounds good but where's the q view! 

post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Left for work in a hurry today, so I forgot to bring my camera.  Such a rookie.  


I'll take my cable home and get Qview up when I get home tonight.  

post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 

As promised, here's the Qview.  I mustarded both the brisket and butt, and hit it with Jeff's rub.  I got it on unevenly, figured I would even it out by hand, but it wound up getting massaged into a paste.  Not sure if that's good bad or indifferent, but that's what happened.  It's hard to tell, but I trimmed the fat cap down to next to nothing (that whole YAWYE thing) on one part of it, but left more on another part.  I was surprised to see that the part with more fat over it got toothpick tender before the trimmed part, which never really did.  And not surprisingly, the meat with decent fat cap coverage was by far better quality than the part without.  So I'll not be trimming down a fat cap again.





About 10 hours into the smoke.  The rub on both is Jeff's rub, and I used hickory chunks for smoke over a mixture of lump and briquette (I ran out of lump).  I should have recognized that the top of the pork was getting dry.  My water pans ran dry for a while before I noticed it and re-filled them.  I'm not sure if that's the only reason it happened or not, but the top part was like jerky and made it hard to shred because the top layer held together even when the underlying fibers wanted to shred.  But man alive did that outer layer taste good:



Question about my pork cut.  I thought it was a butt, but when I shredded it, the bone left in was the top of the femur, complete with the socket and a small part cut from the pelvis, and not the scapula.  So was I not really dealing with a butt?  It seems like I've read that a pork butt is from the top of the shoulder.  At the end of the day, I guess I don't care much what it was because it was really tasty and the thing only cost about $12.


After the butt came off, about 2 hours to go on the brisket, and when the ABTs went on.  ABT stuffing was cream cheese and chopped green onions, wrapped with thick cut applewood smoked bacon.  They were the talk of the party:




Finished pork butt (?).  I took it to 188 IT before I pulled it, which might have been a little too high since it was just a tad dry/slightly odd texture in a few places.  But the whole thing got eaten, with most people going back for seconds and a few people going back for thirds, so I obviously didn't screw it up that horribly.



Aaaand, by the time I started cutting things up we had lots of hungry people, so I didn't get any pics of the shredded/cut product.  But I got a really pretty smoke ring on both and great flavor.  You'll just have to take my word for it.  Oh, I also did chicken drumsticks, also with Jeff's rub.  I put them in the smoker for an hour after I pulled my brisket, but by then my cooking temps were dropping and I was about out of fuel.  So I fired up the gas grill and grilled them.  That was a big hit with the party guests as well.  They were all devoured before I could take pics.


Another question on my pork.  I cooked it skin side down, and the part facing up was really lean.  I didn't get much of a bark formation, to speak of.  Is that because there wasn't enough fat to keep it from turning into jerky/leather? 


This was a lot of fun.  Can't wait for an excuse to come along to do it all again because it's going to be much better the next go around.

post #7 of 11

You did an Awesome job!! The color on the Brisket and Butts are great.


It's an art to getting that"perfect" bark. There is lots of ways to get bark, you just gotta keep trying different methods.

Looks like your very close, keep it up.



Awesome Qview


post #8 of 11

That is a great looking smoke - congrats and happy birthday 

post #9 of 11

That sounds like you made a great meal!...Regarding that Pork it sounds like a Picnic Shoulder aka Front Leg. It makes for good eats. That 188*F IT is good for Slicing the Pork but if Pulling is your goal you will find taking it to 205*F with a good hour rest, foiled and in a cooler, will give very tender and moist, fall apart meat. Happy Birthday!...JJ

post #10 of 11

Great job! It all looks delicious!

post #11 of 11


Now your smoke looks good so far and I'm glad that we could help you out.

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