This cook was inspired by Damon555's thread, Experiment, thank you, Damon. Wanting to depart from the ordinary, my thought was to see just how one could smoke/cook a pork butt with minimum effort, yet produce a very pleasing finished product.
The following butt was prepared and cooked at a single higher than usual temp (no temp stepping) than usual for a shorter time without any of the commonly used trimming, scoring, rub, mopping, spritzing, wrapping, long rest or finishing sauce.
Preparation: Inject the 7# butt with brine, place in the simple brine for 24 hours, pat dry and then place in cold smoker.
1 - gallon water
1 ¼ - cups canning salt, 370 g by weight
8 - cups total fruit juice, combined apple, orange and pineapple juice
Salt and water = 35%
Total liquid = 30%
pH = 4.3
Smoker and temp settings, wood:
Cookshack 066 Amerique
Temp set 300°
Cut off to hold temps - 200°, 140°
3.15-ounce maple chunk
Cooking times and temps:
Ambient air temp - 45°
Starting meat temp - 41°
Time Meat temp Smoker temp
1 hr 124° 265°
2 hr 163° 294°
3 hr 165° 304°
4 hr 178° 298°
5 hr 190° 298°
6 hr 200° 300°
6.5 hr 206° 281°
Ingredients and equipment: Fruit juice combo of orange, apple, and pineapple, 7# pork butt
salt and water, fermentation crock, pH meter, injector, salometer, and 3.15-ounce maple chunk.
Butt submerged and weighted down in crock using 1.5 gallons of brine.
Butt after 24 hours in brine.
Ready for some heat. Notice no drip pan was used during the cook. This allowed the juices
to drip onto the firebox creating steam and additional smoke.
Decided to use some secondary smoke on some cheddar curds for my wife.
Smoked the curds for 20 minutes. The smoke at this time was a white, moist, medium density.
The curds were allowed to air dry for two hours and then were ready for consumption. Mild smoke flavor.
6.5 hours and 206°. First time the door was opened since putting the butt in.
The bark was outstanding, a total surprise.
The butt fell apart with very little residual fat.
Very easy to pull. There would have been more had someone stayed out of it.
Naked pulled pork on a Kaiser roll sandwich with smoked cheese, curds, and a Kosher dill.
This was a very easy to prepare butt that produced a surprisingly good mahogany bark, very easy to pull and very little fat, about a quarter cup. The butt had a very delightful pork flavor that was wonderful without any additional seasoning or sauces. All flavors were very subtle with no one flavor standing out. The fruit flavor was far less than was expected, even after injecting. The fruit flavor was an excellent complement to the salt and natural pork flavors.
My wife and lead critic commented several times on how good it was on its own with a mild smoke flavor and lower than the usual salinity.
The end result was a product that was very good on its own yet one that may well be adjusted to any taste preference after pulling or serving.
Will I do it again? Absolutely.
Edited by Mr T 59874 - 5/2/15 at 10:11am