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Newbie Here And With A Few Questions

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

Hello all.

New to using a smoker. I just got done with my first build, I decided on and built a double barrel smoker. Yesterday I figured I would give it a try. I wanted to start out with something a little cheap and easy so I used a 4.5 lb pork loin. When it was all said and done, the loin had a great smoke taste, but was pretty tough to chew. Just wondering what might have went wrong and what I might have done wrong. The night before I injected it with a recipe that I came up with, I then placed it in a pan (left it uncovered, which I think I probably should have covered it) and put it in the refrigerator. The next day I started up the smoker, was using charcoal and some cherry wood, got the temp up and grabbed the pork from the fridge and threw it on (but now I know I should have let it get to room temp first). I cooked it till the temp was about 150 and pulled it and let it sit for about 30-40 mins. Like I said, had a great taste but was just tough. I was able to keep the temp to 200-225 during most of it. There was a few times it did reach 300 or down to 175, but wasn't at either for very long. I don't know if it was one big mistake or several that caused this. I tried to give as much info as I could, so any advice would be helpful! 

post #2 of 6

texas.gif  Good afternoon and welcome to the forum, from a cooling down East Texas. Lots of great people with tons of information on just about                  everything

 

 

 

 

            Gary

post #3 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dmyoung View Post
 

Hello all.

New to using a smoker. I just got done with my first build, I decided on and built a double barrel smoker. Yesterday I figured I would give it a try. I wanted to start out with something a little cheap and easy so I used a 4.5 lb pork loin. When it was all said and done, the loin had a great smoke taste, but was pretty tough to chew. Just wondering what might have went wrong and what I might have done wrong. The night before I injected it with a recipe that I came up with, I then placed it in a pan (left it uncovered, which I think I probably should have covered it) and put it in the refrigerator. The next day I started up the smoker, was using charcoal and some cherry wood, got the temp up and grabbed the pork from the fridge and threw it on (but now I know I should have let it get to room temp first). I cooked it till the temp was about 150 and pulled it and let it sit for about 30-40 mins. Like I said, had a great taste but was just tough. I was able to keep the temp to 200-225 during most of it. There was a few times it did reach 300 or down to 175, but wasn't at either for very long. I don't know if it was one big mistake or several that caused this. I tried to give as much info as I could, so any advice would be helpful! 

 

Hi Dmyoung and welcome aboard!  

 

First advice is, don't know where you heard to let that pork sit out until it gets to room temperature, but IMO that's bad advice.  Food safety guidelines say that you should get your meat through the "danger zone" in 4 hours or less (the danger zone is an internal meat temp of between 40* and 140* F...this is the temp range that is most conducive to bacteria growth).  If your meat sits on the counter at room temp for an hour, your "danger zone" clock is ticking away...its best to go straight from the fridge to the smoker.

 

Its hard for me to guess why your loin turned out tough.  At an internal temp (IT) of 150*, it should have been tender and juicy.  Are you confident in the accuracy of your equipment...i.e. do you trust the thermometers you're using to monitor both your cooking temperatures and your meat IT? 

 

It often takes a few smokes under one's belt to get their methods and their equipment "dialed in".  Hang in there and you'll be turning out the best Que you've ever had pretty soon.

 

Red

post #4 of 6

I agree with Red, I never let my meat come to room temp. I take it out of the fridge do whatever final prep or seasoning is needed and on the smoker.  I would check your temp gauge 

 

Gary

post #5 of 6
Thread Starter 

Thank you Gary and Red.

 

Red I knew about the "danger zone", which is the reason I went straight from the fridge to the cooker. But I am glad to know now not to do it and that it wasn't the problem. The temp gauge was one I picked up at the hardware store and threaded it into the barrel. The meat thermometer was one I have had for several years and used it for the house and grill. I think I will fire up the cooker and test the accuracy with one of my infrared thermometers, and I will also check the meat thermometer as well. That is a good start for me anyways. Just thinking about it I am also wondering if it was my choice of meat to begin with. Was a high dollar pork loin to start out with.

 

And again, thanks for the advice!

 

David

post #6 of 6

Put your temp gauge stem into boilling water and see what it reads

 

Gary

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