Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A tale of two Butts

I have been thinking about doing a taste test on butts for a while now (don't laugh, you know what I mean.)  I have never injected anything with well..anything.  I have read and seen a lot of people who inject their butts/briskets/turkeys/chicken with some form of marinade.  On at least 100 occasions I have seen,picked up and read, the cajun injector at any of the stores that I frequent.  Just never bought it.  Well I didn't buy it this time, but I did buy an injector.
Then I had to figure out what to inject.  I decided on a mix of apple cider vinegar and Saw's Sauce.
I put 1 1/2 cups of the marinade into the larger of the butts.  I let it marinate(I guess this is the correct term) over night.  I got up yesterday morning at 5 a.m. to start the fire.  I then rubbed both butts in Rut's Rub.  The one on the right has been injected.  Butt on the left 6.5 lbs, right 7.5 lbs.
I got the fire up to 250 then put the butts on.  If you remember from yesterday I got a new smoker.  This is the first big cook on it.  It was 6 in the morning, dew still covering the ground, I am on my second cup of coffee, a clear white smoke coming out of the smoker, I am in hog heaven (pun intended.)  It will be a great day, well....Here is the short summary of my day:

I noticed quickly the temp started to waiver, it did this early and often.  Then at some point, around 10, I walked outside and heard a noise that made my heart quake.  What I heard was the top rack had fallen, hitting the bottom rack, into the water pan and on into the coals.  I slowly opened the door to the smoker to make sure nothing fell out.  Byrd came running out and helped me take the butts off get them into the oven on 225, while I got the smoke back up to temp and set up again.  I wish I would have gotten a picture of this, but the frustration of the situation did not let me think that far ahead.  All set up, the butts go back on.  I thank Byrd for helping me to see the funny side of this and I get my spirit back.  Then things settled into a nice routine of having about 2 hour breaks in having to do something.  Around 11 last night the internal temp was 175.  It was a long night to say the least.  I wrapped them, in a sleepy haze,around 3 this morning when the internal timer went off at 190.  They stayed on until 6 when they reached 210.  I went back to sleep after that.

I pulled the pork this morning at 8.  I am not sure I have ever gotten out of bed, poured a cup of coffee, and started to pull pork.  What a great morning.  The bones slid right out, great smoke ring, and the bark was delicious for breakfast.  This is my pork plate, you can barely see the pig in the middle, it is only used for pork products.
 Here they are pulled.
As I tasted them this morning, I couldn't decide which one I liked better.  The one with the injection definitely had the little bit of extra flavor, but I still liked the straight pork flavor from the other one.  A very tough decision.  Maybe after lunch I will be able to make a better decision.  I will do the injection again, partly because it was fun to prepare.  Although it was a much longer cook than I had expected, and extremely frustrating on the new smoker, it was still a day/night spent outside cooking.  I also will be able to take pulled pork to friends and family, who are anxiously awaiting.  I will say this about this cook, I envy people with the BGE. There I said it.


  1. OK, hilarious! First of all, the fact that you cooked boston bu-tox for a whole day, secondly that the smoker collapsed, and thirdly (is that a word??) that you pulled pork at the butt crack (pun intended!)

    I cannot wait to see you both next week and you better have some good plans for J on Saturday-y'all are cooking!!!

    Is the BGE a big green egg?? What is it?

    Love yoU!

  2. Thanks Sister, glad I could make you laugh with my issues. BGE is a Big Green Egg. Look it up, J would love one.

  3. Awesome blog!

    Sus has commented several times on "Macon Dinner" but the bad brother-in-law in me has delayed my viewing.

    Pork looks great. Enjoyed your brisket post as well...I am entertaining smoking one this weekend. See you guys soon


  4. I'm pretty sure this requires multiple taste tests. And a second opinion (note - this is where I come in). These look delicious!

  5. I am the same way. Sometimes I use Chris Lilly's injection, sometimes I use no injection at all. They both come out good but different. It's like trying to decide which child you love the most;)

    You have a great wife, mine would have had to talk me off of the ledge too. That and my neighbors would have heard me saying a lot of words that start with S and F at 3 in the morning;)

    Glad it all turned out okay.