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Finishing Pork Butt - Temperature Safety Question?

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Got a late start on smoking a 4.5 lb bone-in butt yesterday.  It was still at 170 at 11pm.  Did some searching online and saw that some have taken butts off, wrapped in foil, put them in an ice bath to cool and then refrigerated overnight, with goal of putting back on smoker the next day to bring it to 205.  I wrapped it, iced it down for about an hour and then refrigerated. 

 

One question - I just put it back onto the smoker, but when I stuck the temperature probe in, it showed as about 88 degrees.  It's either been in the ice bath or refrigerator all nite long, so I was a little shocked to see it at that temp (I tried two different areas to confirm temp).  Is it safe to finish the smoke and eat or am I in a danger zone for food safety?  Many thanks in advance.

post #2 of 4
Quote:
Originally Posted by bglassbe View Post

Got a late start on smoking a 4.5 lb bone-in butt yesterday.  It was still at 170 at 11pm.  Did some searching online and saw that some have taken butts off, wrapped in foil, put them in an ice bath to cool and then refrigerated overnight, with goal of putting back on smoker the next day to bring it to 205.  I wrapped it, iced it down for about an hour and then refrigerated. 

One question - I just put it back onto the smoker, but when I stuck the temperature probe in, it showed as about 88 degrees.  It's either been in the ice bath or refrigerator all nite long, so I was a little shocked to see it at that temp (I tried two different areas to confirm temp).  Is it safe to finish the smoke and eat or am I in a danger zone for food safety?  Many thanks in advance.


Where did you find that information...

Food should always be cooked to the finish temp in one step... Cooling food, the food should get from 140 to below 40 deg. F within 2 hours...

If you don't have time to watch the smoker, put the meat in the oven at 210 deg. F, and let it finish there... I have finished many pork butts in Brides oven overnight...
post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your reply.  I found it here:

 

http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_technique/cook_today_serve_tomorrow.html

 

I suppose in this instance, since I didn't get it down to the 40's, probably should toss this one and use the oven overnight next time.  

post #4 of 4
He then wraps it tightly in foil, pinching off the overlaps thoroughly, and drops it into a clean watertight plastic bag. A garbage bag will do. The whole shootin' match goes in a beer cooler submerged under plenty of ice. He wants it to chill in a hurry. He warns that a fridge is not cold enough and the thermal mass of warm meat will raise the fridge temp much too high spoiling many of the other foods in there. "We try to keep water drained out of cooler. No matter how tightly wrapped, water seems to find a way in."

The next morning he takes the meat out of the cooler, out of the bag, but still in foil, and it goes back on the pit (or at home you could put it in an oven) at 310°F for three to four hours until it hits 200°F. That's a Texas Crutch.



The meat was under ice overnight... I think that is a very important piece of the puzzle....

The situation, as I see it is..... while the meat is between 40-140 on the way up, bacteria can grow... same while the temp is on the way down, then again on the way back up to finish temp... The USDA/FDA has articles about this and why to avoid it... It's like restaurants reheating food over and over...

You will have to be the judge on what to do... From the time you took it out of the smoker until you noticed it was 88, then reheated it... lots of stuff can happen...

It may be fine... it could cost you a trip to the hospital with one of several food poisonings that could have grown.... For what the meat cost in dollars, is a very cheap lesson if you toss it....

I have seen a few things from Amaz... Ri.... that are not kosher... I would not use that site for instructions, only ideas, and supplement the safety stuff from reputable sources......
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