post #1 of 11
12/10/12 at 9:11pm
You can, as long as you hit minimum temps. Get the shoulder to a minimum of 135° internal, either in the smoker or in the oven. Then cool it first to refrigeration temp, then freeze it. At 135° you have successfully destroyed most all harmful pathogens, it is now 'partially cooked' and can be frozen. Then, take out and unthaw under refrigeration, and then raise the internal temp to above 145° in smoker or oven; that is minimum 'fully cooked' status.
Without hitting those temps, you are leaving bacteria and pathogens alive and still able to reproduce, even under refrigeration or internally with frozen temps also. I learned early that if you don't freeze something to preserve it immediately, waiting too long until it just starts to turn, by the time you unthaw it out, it is even worse and is shot. Nasties will continue to reproduce even at freezer temps; it retards spoilage, but doesn't stop it, and what spoilage is there becomes amplified from freezing and thawing.
Oh! Thank you for joining the forum and please ask questions too! One question I would like to ask of you is if you would not mind going to Roll Call and introduce yourself so we can give you a proper Welcoming, and please add your location to your profile! Thank you so much!
Pops answer is " Technically " correct, 135*F being considered by the USDA correct, however, it is risky to go " just " to the minimum temps with anything that is not Cured. Since there is room for error,extra precautions must be taken. Most of concern to me is, " You have a Smoker that will not maintain a Minimum safe Smoking Temp of 225*F ", and You plan to serve a Senior Citizen that may or may not have a sufficiently strong enough immune system to handle residual Bacteria or Toxins. Additionally your thermometer may be a couple of degrees off, and a simple misplacement of the therm probe may indicate a safe temp in one portion of the meat and may be under temp in another. These are general precautions. It should also be made perfectly clear that if you Inject anything, punch holes for Garlic and Herbs or if the Pork was De-boned it is extremely risky to do what you are proposing. Once again, in this situation, I suggest fully cooking your Pork, pulling to cool quickly, and reheating at a later point. Do as you wish but be careful...JJ
Not trying to rag on you, but Little Chief smokers are good primarily for smoking fish or jerky. I wouldn't attempt anything else in one. Others may disagree, but my dad had one for years, and I wouldn't trust it to do anything else.
But we all have to start someplace.
I've been wanting a new bigger one, but thats where I'm at now. I have used it for 2 years now with lots of pork and chicken through it, so far no issues. I but I agree it's not ideal. I always finish things in the oven and make sure my temps are ok.
Hi That is great, That is awesome information, i was also looking for this.These are general precautions. It should also be made perfectly clear that if you Inject anything, punch holes for Garlic and Herbs or if the Pork was De-boned it is extremely risky to do what you are proposing.