Brining a small, 3 lb pork shoulder roast for ham

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Dotyville

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Jan 15, 2021
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Good morning!
Since there is only two of us when choosing a cut for ham I go small. My first attempt worked out well. It was a slightly smaller picnic which I brined for 7 days and then smoked at 180 for an internal temp of 150. I'm now reading I over brined it. My question is this. Is anything over two three days worth it? Also because I didn't write it down my smoking temp was either 180 or 225. Can't remember. Also how important does anyone feel leaving it in the fridge for a day to dry before smoking is? I've read it both ways; smoking dry and same day smoking. Thanks all for the input!
 

smokerjim

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What brine did you use, how thick was the cut of meat, most people here will put in fridge over night unwrapped to dry it or put in front of a fan an hour or two, or dry it in smoker before adding smoke.
 

FFchampMT

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Jul 2, 2020
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I'm now reading I over brined it. My question is this. Is anything over two three days worth it?
2 or 3 days of brining is appropriate cure time for a piece of meat ~1.5" thick. That seems extremely short for even half a pork butt. Overbrined would be something you could taste if you just did a standard brine like Pop's- saltiness.
I am an ardent supporter of EQ Brining, you leave it cure for a minimum time based on thickness, and going over isn't a big deal either, it never gets too salty.
Drying a little before smoking helps the meat take in smoke rather than it depositing on the surface.
 

smokerjim

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You could slice A piece off and fry it before smoking, if it's to salty soak it in water for a couple hours and fry another piece and repeat if necessary.
 

chopsaw

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I'm now reading I over brined it.
Where are you reading that ?


Is anything over two three days worth it?
If you want ham , yes . 3 Days is not long enough for whole muscle meat .

Post want brine you are using with the breakdown of the amounts of ingredients . I don't believe you will get a salty result from a long soak in Pop's brine . It's about the easiest and most forgiving way you can cure something .
I use the phosphate injection method , and hold in a 36 degree fridge 10 to 14 days . Dry uncovered overnight before smoking .
 

Dotyville

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Jan 15, 2021
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Where are you reading that ?



If you want ham , yes . 3 Days is not long enough for whole muscle meat .

Post want brine you are using with the breakdown of the amounts of ingredients . I don't believe you will get a salty result from a long soak in Pop's brine . It's about the easiest and most forgiving way you can cure something .
I use the phosphate injection method , and hold in a 36 degree fridge 10 to 14 days . Dry uncovered overnight before smoking .
Should've read "thinking" I used 1 cup kosher salt, 1 cup brown sugar and I believe 1 tbsp pink salt. I also injected some of the brine.
 

chopsaw

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When I wet cure I use Pop's brine at the rate of 1/2 cup salt , 1/2 cup brown sugar ,
1/2 cup white sugar and 1 Tablespoon cure #1 to one gallon of water .
If I was doing a 3 lb. hunk of pork for ham I would use that mix , inject the meat from the bulk mix and soak at least 10 days held in a 36 degree fridge with a thermometer in it so I know what the actual temp is . I don't go by the dial on the unit .
 

zwiller

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If that was in a gallon of water and injected I think you are OK but I admit I never rush it and go a week. IIRC Pops went
"a few days". The kosher salt is the equivalent of 1/2C table salt and injecting speeds up the cure rapidly.
 

chopsaw

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It's common for long soak times with Pop's brine .
Here's a couple threads to look at if you haven't already .

Note where he says longer time with less cure .

This applies to Pop's brine . So keep that in mind .
 
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zwiller

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It appears I am in error. Pops "few days" was based on turkey which is much less thicker than a ham. Motion carried... More time.
 

chopsaw

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Well I wouldn't say that , and didn't take it that way . I just know from reading and re-reading that he let things go 30 days or more , and have read the few days comment from him .
 

SmokinEdge

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It appears I am in error. Pops "few days" was based on turkey which is much less thicker than a ham. Motion carried... More time.
Poultry meat will get mushy if left in the brine more than a couple three days. That’s the reason for such a short sit for them.
 

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