First time pork chops came out very hammy, why?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by caliperson, Aug 1, 2016.

  1. caliperson

    caliperson Newbie

    Smoked 2 pork chops today that were good, but tasted very much like ham...


    -used 4 handfuls of apple wood chips

    -2 hours on an electric smoker at 225, then reverse seared on a grill for 5 minutes

    -chops were bone in and pretty thick, almost 2 inches maybe

    -brined 24 hours in a basic salt/brown sugar/water mix

    -thermometer tested and works fine

    -used a very light carne asada style rub right before cooking

    I accidentally overcooked the meat to at least160F (or quite a bit more), yet it was still very juicy, and quite pink on the outer rim (coincidentally whenever I grill beef ribeyes, they seem to always be red on the outer rim in the same location no matter how done they are, anyone know why that is?)

    I did some internet searching and it sounds like maybe it was pre-cured by the chain store I got them at, looking for any other ideas though.  Thanks!

    ps- I forgot to take pictures for qview [​IMG]  
    Last edited: Aug 1, 2016
  2. pit 4 brains

    pit 4 brains Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to the SMF!

    I really doubt if they were cured when you bought them, however, a 24 hr salt / sugar brine and then an application of a rub (more salt) and added smoke could very well have changed the texture of the meat. By no means was it cured, but very Kosher..

    Just a guess here.
  3. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yelp your brine, did the trick. Even though you didn't have cure in it the salt and sugar probably have you the hammy taste.

    As for the smoke ring, that's pretty normal if you're cooking over charcoal, lump or wood.

    As for over cooking the safe temp for pork is 145. You can pull at 140 and during the rest the meat should rise to 145+. I pull at 145 and like the results I get.
  4. caliperson

    caliperson Newbie

    The saga continues -  I got two racks of spare ribs from two different sources.  One was frozen, one was fresh.  I used the 3-2-1 method with 1/4 hickory and 3/4 apple chunks.  One rack had a dry rub I applied right before cooking; one was totally plain (I used a finishing sauce), both came out very hammy.  I'm starting to think I might just not like apple wood?  Could the fact I'm using an electric smoker have something to do with it? 
  5. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    It may be that you are associating the smoke flavor with ham. So no matter what type of wood you use you may think it tastes hammy.

    Most not all but most commercial store bought hams are smoked with hickory, at least the ones in my neck of the woods.
  6. caliperson

    caliperson Newbie

    -It's possible, I was thinking about it, and the 3 worst cooks I've done all involved apple (the two pork sessions, 1 salmon session). I usually prefer hickory over other wood, but then again it DOES make my tri-tips taste like bacon....but I've been enjoying that flavor in that case.

    -Newbie question:  Someone told me that maybe having smoke on the meat right when I add it to the electric smoker is initially kind of "cold smoking" the meat, and that might be giving it the odd hammy taste as well, is that total B.S., or should I try adding the wood after the meat has been cooking awhile and is more "up to temp?"  Thanks
    Last edited: Aug 31, 2016
  7. pit 4 brains

    pit 4 brains Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Only if your smoker is cold, you add the meat, then turn on the smoker heat.

    All of my smokers are up to temp and producing heat when I add the food. Can't help it, they all burn charcoal or wood. I've never had anything come out hammy except cured products like CB and bacon-on-a-stick.

    I can't imagine for the life of me how you can make a tri-tip taste like bacon..
  8. caliperson

    caliperson Newbie

    For the bacon-esque tri-tip I just use hickory and nothing but salt for a rub.

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