With some apprehension and excitement I started my first smoke that will be shared with family and friends. First I want to say thanks to all the great members of SMF that share so much from experience to recipes, you really help bridge the gap from not having a clue to putting a finished product on the table.
I followed the advise of several SMF members, all the way from preping the smoker the first time, through a batch of chicken thighs and now my first pork butt.
I have a 7 1/2 pounder in the smoker, all seems to be going well so far, after 1 1/2 hours I noticed quite a lot of smoke and decided I needed to see why, as I expected my pellets(mix of hickory and cherry) had jumped rows in the AMNPS, I had read so much about some having problems keeping it lit that I made sure it was lit good!!! Maybe too good, I tried to put out one row and will reload and start later, we will see how this goes!
I have some of these little pans that fit under the "drip hole" in my Weber Q 100 and it fits perfectly over the AMNPS as a tent. I left the top edge in tack but cut away most of the sides leaving corners for support. It fits perfect!
And using Jeff's Rub I prepped my butt ,wrapped it in plastic wrap and into the fridge over night. When I got up at 3:30 this morning to start smoking I was surprised at how great this looked even before going in the MES 30.
OHHHOHHH, just realized today is Friday the 13th......burned most of my first tray of pellets, in 2 1/2 hours, my fault, in fear of it going out I put too much torch to it I think and had the pellets too high allowing the heat from one row to start the next. So, we learn as we go! Started a new load of pellets and did not fill it as full as the first time. We will see...as you can tell this is a live broadcast...editing as things progress.
1 1/2 later: Pellets seem to be doing well, nice TBS. Total time in smoker at this point has been a little over 4 hours, just spritzed with some apple juice, smoker temp holding at 223* IT at 135.
The pellets did great and lasted several hours, no more problems. I didn't fill the AMNPS as full, I think that was the problem the first time around!
Unfortunately I have to leave for the rest of the day and did not get finished. Made it to 187*. After several suggestions from SMF members I decided to pull, wrap it tight a put in the fridge the way it is and tomorrow I will finish it on the gas grill with indirect heat or in the oven, but I think the wife is going to be baking so probably going to be the grill. Should not be a problem, I have a large 5 burner Jenn-Air and think I can control the temp as well as the over, I'll use the Maverick ET 732 and watch it close.
I had to steal a bite when I got to this point, bark was really tasty, a little heat, and right under the bark was full of juice!
I will post this and maybe edit or add to tomorrow with pictures of the pulled pork!