First pork butt

Discussion in 'Pork' started by richc, Jul 25, 2010.

  1. richc

    richc Fire Starter

    Well it didn't go as smoothly as I had hoped, but in the end everything came out pretty well. There were some sections that were a little tough to pull, and I think if I would have not struggled with the temps early on, I would have had time to let it cook a little longer. 

    Here's the pictures of the process. 

    Rubbed and wrapped about 20 hours before going on in the smoker. 



    In the smoker with some more salt and pepper. 


    Coolered at 195. 




    And about to get into my belly. The corn was in the smoker too, but I finished it on the grill because it was already pretty late. 


    All in all, it was really good, but I know it can be even better next time. I'm pretty happy for my first time smoking meat. There was enough of the shoulder that was really tender and juicy that when it was mixed with the dry, tougher section, you really didn't notice it. 

    Next up: Brisket. 
    meateater likes this.
  2. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Nice looking pig!

     In the picture of the butt that is on the foil is the end facing the camera where it was dry???

      Can't tell what kind of smoker you are using but i know when i had my vertical i had a real problem w/ hot spots.

     Could that be the problem? if you have a hot spot it could be cooking alot faster and hotter in that area.
  3. squirrel

    squirrel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Great pictures!
  4. richc

    richc Fire Starter

    It's funny because I was just thinking about how to describe where it was dryer and tougher. It was actually towards the middle of the butt. Right about at the end of the bone, There were sections that I pulled off that just fell apart and were juicy, but that one part fought back when I pulled it. It didn't just fall apart when I put a couple of forks on it. It was probably the middle top of that picture. 

    I can't say it was really "tough", but it was tough in comparison to most of the th rest of the meat. I was trying to do a hot and fast cook, but it still took 9 hours for an 8.5 lb pork butt because my temps were all over the place early on. I've also read that you want to take it to 205 and cooler for at least an hour, but I didn't have time to do either. It was only in the cooler for 30 minutes because the kids were starving. 
  5. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member


     I would say that the (tougher) part was not up to the temps of the rest of the butt.

    or at least for not as long.

     The (rule) is around 1.5 hrs per lb of meat. I've had them take longer and had them cook faster.

      So a fast cook on a big piece of meat will not be as good as a low and slow cook.
  6. deannc

    deannc Master of the Pit

    I smoked two butts today, 6.25 and 7 pounder.  One of them I had a similar issue with and my thought was maybe it was just that butt or something.  I foil at 165* and only went to 200* before coolering for 2 hours.  Plenty hot, still 180* when I pulled them from the cooler so it had to break down.  The other fell apart prett easily, but the one similar to yours there was one section near the bone that was a little tough.  It came apart, but was just a much firmer texture I guess may be what I'm saying. 
  7. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Nice job on your first butt. [​IMG]
  8. richc

    richc Fire Starter

    Yeah, that's what it was like. It wasn't like a well done pork chop, but there was resistance to pulling the meat fibers apart, as opposed to a lot of the rest of the meat. I couldn't just lightly run a couple of forks through it and have it fall apart. Eating it, it wasn't tough or anything. Just not the melt in your mouth goodness that most of the rest of the shoulder was.

    I also have to say that the bark was go good and I ate so much of it when I was pulling this that I'm still feeling ill this morning. Remind me to not do that next time.  
  9. Ahhh... The curse of the pork puller... I often find myself trying to remember to save some of the bark for everyone else... It has come up once or twice that there does not seem to be any in the tray. I guess its the pitmaster's right to pillage the bark!!! 

    Great pics Rich! Thanks for the Qview!!!
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2010
  10. realtorterry

    realtorterry Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    very nice for a first try
  11. chefrob

    chefrob Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    nice first butt...............
  12. deannc

    deannc Master of the Pit

    That's a great description.  All I can contribute it to in my situation was the particular piece of meat because I know my temps were good, taking it to 200*, double foiled, doubled toweled in a cooler full of blankets for 2 hours etc etc...there was sufficient temperature and time for it to break down.

    That bark is irresistible for sure!  I have to shew my wife away now because she's finally caught on!  I told her she has to get up at 3 a.m. or pull an all-nighter with me to earn dibs on the bark before it's served!  She still thinks I'm crazy taking pictures etc! LOL  Great Qview by the way!

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