Originally Posted by Chris Zimmerman
I picked up a 25lb suckling pig today and I am going to be cooking it in a Charlbroil 1280 offset smoker/grill. I have a few questions if anyone has the experience and time to want to answer them.
Should I be putting the charcoal in the offset portion to build up the heat? That would be SOP whether you are smoking a Piggy or a Chicken. The is a little one and will yield about 40% or 10 pounds of Pulled Meat. Don't forget the Head and Neck, best part. If you want crisp skin, treat it like a Chicken. Go 225*F to get the meat cooked then remove the skin and put it on a Hot Grill to crisp the skin up.
Should I wrap the pig in tinfoil? I don't see the point. You want good smoke contact and this little guy will go quick, maybe 4 hours at the low temp. Run the temp at 300-325*F and it will take about 2 hours. Either way add a couple hour to CYA and/or Rest the meat a min of one hour covered in Foil. Perhaps removing it at the end and turning up the end to crisp up the skin? That is an option. Start at 225*F until the IT hits 140*F then bump the heat and take the temp in the Ham to 200*F then wrap in foil and rest and hour before pulling.
If I tinfoil it, how should I turn it and how often? Just turn it if you have no Baffles so half the cook the Hams are close to the fire half the time the Head. Cover the nose, ears and feet with foil so the don't burn. Start the cook Hams to the fire. Perhaps some silicon/kevlar gloves and just turning it by hand? Whatever you have to protect your hands.
I'm thinking I'm going to go with a Cuban style mojo marinade. With Platanos Fritos, black beans and rice. To keep the Cuban theme going :) That should be Great!
This is my first time doing anything like this and even grilling, so any opinions are welcome. Thanks in advance! The major risk is the Loins will most likely get Dry before the Hams and Shoulders get cooked. Your best bet it to shred or chop all the meat and mix them together with a Finishing Sauce. Here is Two Recipes, one Sweet, one Tangy. Good Luck...JJ
1T Pork Rub, yours
1/2 Stick Butter
1/2C Cane Syrup... Dark Corn Syrup...or Honey
1/4C Apple Cider...or Juice
Optional, but I added...
2T Vinegar, 1T Mustard and 2T Ketchup to make it slightly more Tart and no further BBQ Sauce was needed.
For a Sweet Finishing Sauce for Pulled Pork: Make a Double batch, Butter optional or do as I do...Use the Smoked Pork Fat from the drip pan...
At 205* rest or hold the Pig in a cooler wrapped in towels until ready to serve.
Pull the Pork and place it back in the pan and add Foiling Juice to moisten and Serve...OR... Bag and refrigerate until needed.
When re-heating place the Pulled Pork in a Pan or Crockpot and add reserved Foiling Juice or Apple Cider, as needed to make up the Juice that was absorbed while the pork was refrigerated. Cover and re-heat in a pre-heated 325-350*F oven or on High in the crockpot to 165*F and Serve.
Note: the addition of the reserved Foiling Juice or Apple Cider should make the PP moist but not Swimming.
JJ's Finishing Sauce
2C Apple Cider Vinegar
2T Worcestershire Sauce or more to taste
1/4C Brown Sugar
1T Smoked Paprika
2 tsp Granulated Garlic
2 tsp Granulated Onion
2 tsp Fine Grind Black Pepper
1 tsp Celery Salt
1 tsp Cayenne Pepper or Chipotle powder. Add more if you like Heat.
1/2 tsp Grnd Allspice
Combine all and whisk well. Let rest, at room temp, 30 minutes for the flavors to meld together.
Note: Either one can be adjusted to your taste. Add Sugar, Vinegar and/or Cayenne to get what you like...