First Smokes on 22.5 WSM - I LOVE This Smoker

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by mickhlr, Mar 7, 2016.

  1. mickhlr

    mickhlr Smoke Blower

    After getting in my new 22.5 WSM and playing with it last week, I couldn’t wait to smoke something over the weekend. So, I thought I’d just try a couple racks of spare ribs and a double-smoked ham. But, then I got to thinking, let’s push it and see if it will do what my old stick burner will not. Let’s smoke the ribs and ham together on Saturday, then do an all-nighter Saturday night with a pork shoulder for pulled pork. Let’s just have an all-pork weekend!

    The spare ribs and ham went without incident Saturday. The ribs smoked for about 6 hours total at 230* and ham on the bottom rack for about 4 hours. I found I could close 2 of the 3 bottom vents, and leave one about ¼ way open to get a consistent 230* grate temp…absolutely amazing. I did take the ribs off at about the 4 ½ hour mark to slather them in barbecue sauce. And, they were disturbed at the 2-hour mark for me to move them to add the ham. So, I would say the actual smoke time for the ribs was closer to 5 hours. Both times I disturbed it, I was amazed at how fast the WSM recovered temp. The spare ribs were amazing, and not a one was left over. Not much ham was left over either. Overall, a very successful cook…and by-far the easiest one I’ve ever done.

    But, we had company over and during the conversation and alcohol, I never thought about pics. The company was all family who’ve eaten my barbecue many times. And, both my brother and brother-in-law said those were the best ribs I’d ever smoked. My brother-in-law even told my sister that this was going to cost her money, as he was going to have to purchase a WSM now. He said he never had time to smoke meat like I always have in the past, on a stick burner that you had to watch constantly. And, when I told him the two times mentioned above were the ONLY times I disturbed the fire, that it held right on 230* for 6 hours, and that I was afraid it was going to make me lazy…he decided that was the smoker he needed.

    So, all the above had me psyched about the over-night cook, and I was looking forward to it. I’ve smoked a lot of pork butts, but this was my first shoulder, which is basically a picnic ham. And, I knew no smoke would penetrate that skin, so I removed it before I rubbed it up Friday afternoon. I slathered it in Tabasco sauce to hold the rub, then I used this rub, and put her in the fridge covered for about 32 hours.

    • 1 Cup Brown Sugar

    • 1/3 Cup Chili Powder

    • 1/4 Cup Paprika

    • 3 Tbsp Kosher Salt

    • 3 Tbsp Course Black Pepper

    • 2 Tbsp Cumin

    • 2 Tbsp Coriander

    • 2 Tbsp Allspice

    • 3 Tbsp Granulated Garlic

    • 2 Tbsp Onion Powder

    • 1 Tbsp Cayenne Pepper

    Here you can see that big piece of skin that I cut off.

    I started the WSM about 10:00pm Saturday night. I opened one bottom vent about 1/3 to get to 250*, where I wanted to run, put the pork shoulder on at 11:00, and went to bed. I woke up about 8 hours later and checked my Maverick on the night stand. My smoker grate temp had dropped to 200* and the shoulder was stuck in the stall at 160* internal.

    I went out, stirred up my charcoal, saw it was low, and added about 4 double handfuls of charcoal into the coal door and closed it back. Then, I wrapped the shoulder up in a foil pan covered in foil. Within about 15-20 minutes, the grate temp was back to 250* and we were rocking along again. I just don’t know how long it had been in the stall, or how long I’d been low on charcoal. It set on 160* internal for about another 45 minutes, before it finally started rising again. At the 12-hour mark, around 11:00am, I had an internal temp of 202* and pulled it off. Then, I put the entire foil pan in an ice chest to rest for a while.

    I took it out of the ice chest after a couple of hours, and let it rest on the counter top for about 30 minutes. Finally, the smell was driving me crazy, and I had to test it. It fell off the bone, and was so easy to pull. The bark was perfect, and I could taste just a hint of the hot sauce I used to bind the rub...a really great, sweet, spicy, smoky taste.

    This was only a 7 lb shoulder, but it sure made a lot of good pulled pork.

    When eating pulled pork, even though I’m from Texas, I like a good spicy Carolina-style vinegar based sauce. So, I use this:

    • 2 cups Apple Cider Vinegar

    • 3 Tbsp Ketchup

    • 2 Tbsp Paprika

    • 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar

    • 1 1/2 Tbsp Kosher Salt

    • 1 Tbsp Tabasco sauce

    • 1 to 2 tsp Cayenne Pepper
    • 1 to 2 tsp Ground Black Pepper
    Place all ingredients in a pan. Bring to a boil. Whisk together until brown sugar and salt are completely dissolved. Remove from heat. Cool to room temperature. Pour sauce into a jar or bottle. For best results, refrigerate one day before serving. Shake well before serving.

    Bottom line is…I LOVE THIS SMOKER!!
    tropics likes this.
  2. Love me a good picnic shoulder, you must be in hog heaven by now.  Gotta love the old set it and forget it WSM.  I'm gonna try your sauce next time I smoke a good joint...of pork that is.
  3. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Excellent job!

    Hard not to like a WSM!

  4. mickhlr

    mickhlr Smoke Blower

    Thanks guys!  Yes, I've been amazed at this WSM!  Not only the ease of set it and forget it, for the most part.  But, it turns out some unbelievably good smoky-tasting barbecue.  A friend has a pellet smoker, and his is set it and forget as well...but, does not produce the great smoky taste in the finished product.   I've used propane smokers in the past as well...once again, set it and forget it, but very little smoky taste in the meat.  This is what I love about the WSM, as compared to my Old Country Wrangler offset.  With the WSM, I get the same results, with a lot less work on my part...and the taste is why I used an offset for so many years.  I guess I'll have to start thinking up excuses to get out on the patio and "keep an eye on the smoker". 
  5. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Mick Congrats on that long smoke,I have my WSM 18.5 on its first real cook today.You guessed it Pork Shoulder points

  6. mickhlr

    mickhlr Smoke Blower

    How did it turn out RIchie? 
  7. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

  8. 3montes

    3montes Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Very nice looking pulled pork! I bought a 22" WSM off of Craigslist a few years back for $200 brand new in box. My son asked to borrow it a month or so after that and I haven't seen it since!! [​IMG]He loves it and I did to the couple chances I got to cook on it. I always have said the WSM is the wise mans Green Egg.
  9. mickhlr

    mickhlr Smoke Blower

    LOL!!  Smart son.  I agree about the WSM being the wise man's BGE.  I've had it for two weekends now, and it continues to amaze me.  This weekend, I did an all night pork butt, after doing the shoulder last weekend.  I also used an Auber to keep those temps consistent overnight, so I didn't wake up to a 200* grate temp.  The Auber worked great...I set it on 235*, and it stayed there all night.  I woke up a couple of times during the night, and checked my Maverick on the nightstand, just to see.  I put the 9 lb. butt on the smoker at 11:00pm, got out there to check on it the next morning at 8:00am.  It has been 9 hours, and it was still holding steady at 235* grate temp, and I had an internal meat temp of 169*.  I stirred up my charcoal, added about 6 double-handfuls of unlit charcoal, then went back inside for some coffee and breakfast.  It didn't get up to 200* internal until about 1:00pm Sunday, a 14-hour smoke...and all I did was add charcoal one time.  LOL!! 

    When I brought it in, the bone just pulled out clean...almost fell out on its own.  Best butt I've ever smoked...and I owe it all to the WSM and the Auber. 


Share This Page