Been a while since my last post and finding the winter a little difficult after an amazing smoking summer. So I finally decided to bite the bullet and try out my first winter smoke. Chose a nice 12 lb pork shoulder for my first go.
Got up at 5am on Saturday morning to get the WSM up to temp (about 245F). Had a full basket of charcoal and added a full chimney in the center. Was surprised on how well the temps climbed. Here are a few pics of the temps/winds and my backyard winter wonderland;
Once it hit 245F, tossed the pork on and away we go! To monitor temps, was using the new iGrill2 my wife bought me for Christmas.
From 5am to 10am, my temps were spot on and the WSM was just chuggin' away...but at around 10:30am or so, my temps started to drop and this was the first difference I noticed from summers smokes; when you temps start dropping in the winter, they drop way faster! LOL
So I added more charcoal...
Second difference I noticed in the winter...simply adding unlit charcoal in the chamber is not enough...after 15 minutes of staring at my temp gauge...I sucked it up and lit a full chimney...once this was added temps began rising again.
This explains what my whole day was like....constantly adding charcoal and monitoring temps waiting for this very stubborn piece of pork to be done.
Oh almost forgot...although the iGrill2 app is really cool and gives you nice graphs of your ambient and meat temps, the Bluetooth signal in my location was absolutely terrible and found myself missing my trusty Maverick all day (but did not want to hurt the wife's feelings so kept using the iGrill).
By 4pm, meat temp was nowhere near close to being at temps, so I told to family that tonight's dinner is now Pizza. I knew that their was a chance that this was gonna happen, so no big deal.
What I did not expect was that I would only be pulling it off the smoker at 2am...about 21 hours after it went on. :)
Once it hit 204F I took that sucker off...gave it 15 minutes, and then shredded it before I past out of fatigue!
The next day, warmed it up in the crock pot with the saved juices and it was awesome and very nice to have some BBQ in the middle of winter...
However....my overall opinion...SMOKING IN THE WINTER BLOWS!
I love summers where I am putzing around in the yard with a few beers and tending to a great smelling smoker...but I found myself bitching half the time when I had to dress up every 30 minutes just to go outside to tend to the damn thing. Not to mention freezing my a$$ off to add charcoal every 2 hours. And the kicker on top of all of this...it took 3 x 16 lb bags of charcoal to finish the smoke!!!
I knew it was gonna be a pain in the butt to do a winter smoke but I was dying to taste what I had been tasting all summer...but I can honestly say that I have no plans to relive the experience until spring...
I say this, but I know that I might want it sooo bad again and decide to relive this awful experience. Maybe I should focus on shorter smokes next time. :)
Edited by knifebld - 1/12/15 at 6:38am