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irish fan

Fire Starter
Original poster
May 26, 2006
Hello I am a new member from Indiana "Home of the Fighting Irish of Notre Dame" I do alot of food smoking at home games during some great tailgate parties.I really am new to the art of making BBQ but after ruining many cuts of pork I think I am starting to get better.One question I have been looking for an answer on is why do you trim most of the fat off a shoulder or what ever before you BBQ it?It seems to me it would help baste the meat,but all I have ever read says trim off the fat.
Hi Irish Fan and Welcome to SMF. I for one don't do muct trimming of the fat and I leave the skin on the shoulder and smoke with the skin side down. I keep a tray under it to catch the juices. After 9 hours of smoke I Place the shoulder in another pan with a rack, add apple juice or cider, cover it with foil and let it baste for another 9 hours. I take all the juices and place them in a pot on the stove and skim off the fat and reduce the juices by 1/2 to 2/3rds and use that as a base for my finishing sauce. But that's what I do I am sure there are many other ways.

Top 'O the marnin' to ya Irish Fan and welcome to Smoking Meat Forums.
"Fat On or Fat Off" is more of a personal choice-When I do a pork shoulder, I leave the skin and fat on only because it's easier to remove after it's been smoked and then their smoked fat/skin side down to act as insulation from the heat. Brisket is the same way untrimmed and fat side down.

In the Art of smoking there is no right or wrong way. It's about your skills and what you like. You could ask for opinions on how to do something and you will get a lot of different answers based on each respondent's experience.

This Forum is about sharing our collective knowledge. Visit the different topics-see what others have done. If a couple of different methods of doing say Ribs for example sound interesting, give them both a try and see which way works best for you. In Smoking and Que there is no hard set rules except for where food preparation and safty come into play and for good reason-other than that it's "whatever provides bouyancy to your aquatic vessel" as I tell my kids (whatever floats your boat) :D

If you haven't checked it out, sign up for tulsajeff's Smoking Basics eCourse. It's an excellent primer to get you started out right and if you been doing this for a while-it'll give you food for thought.
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