I hope everyone is well?
It was recently my birthday and my absolutely brilliant buddies clubbed together and got me a Weber Smokey Mountain. This comes after years of me trying to turn our BBQ into a smoker….trying to recreate pulled pork in the slow cooker (actually sort of effective if you don’t want a bark….but who doesn’t want the bark?!)…constantly talking about smokey goodness and finally last year doing a bit of a US roadtrip (I’m from London) to sample some simply superb barbecue.
In addition to the smoker they also got me a chimney starter, charcoal, some mesquite chips, a thermometer and an approx. 2lb/1kg pork shoulder joint, effectively creating me a bit of a starter pack. Now I've heard mesquite should be used sparingly as it can cause bitterness and also that wood chips burn up far faster than chunks, but for now it is what I have to work with – I am going to be doing this test run on Saturday and there is nowhere near me that I can get chunks or an additional wood type from (I was thinking about perhaps some hickory for next time?). The question that I have is that though I've heard to use it sparingly, as I have never smoked anything before I don’t know how much you would usually use, therefore I don’t really know what a sparing amount is. If anyone can help me with the amount I should be using and how long I should be smoking for (as well as what the total smoke time and any other info you think might be useful for me to know!) it would be hugely appreciated!
I am totally new to this but am so keen to get involved, any tips or tricks would be welcomed - like should I smoke it with the fat side up or down? As I have chips is it worth soaking them?
Also, if anyone has any pointers to any good guides for 1st time pork shoulder smoking I would love to know - I've seen a fair few on the internet and in various books but they all seem to differ so I'm really not sure what would work well for me.
Thank you for your time, fingers crossed I don’t completely mess it up this weekend!