Have I ruined my butt??

Discussion in 'Pork' started by pipelinegypsy, Apr 4, 2016.

  1. pipelinegypsy

    pipelinegypsy Fire Starter

    Yikes! I put my butt (10lbs) in the smoker this morning at 5am at 130* to dry and warm up. At 7am I added the AMNPS loaded with dust and bumped the temp to 225*. I checked it at 7:20 and 7:50 and had a nice TBS both times. Then I got busy and didn't check for 2 hours. When I go out there at 9:50 I immediately remembered I had forgotten to return the chip loader after doing some cold/warm smoked buckboard bacon this weekend. This is what greeted me. 

    Heavy and coming out FAST

    I couldn't snap the pic fast enough to get the full amount of eye burning smoke

    This is what is left after just under 3 hours

    So is my butt a goner? I don't know when the heavy stuff started but at most it lasted 2 hours. I put the loader back to it's rightful place and I know I should take the AMNPS out and start some new dust. Any more ideas? What would you do? Thanks guys!!
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I wouldn't worry about it. It may be a little smokier than you would have wanted it.

    But you certainly didn't ruin it.

    Just fill the tray up with more dust & keep on smoking.

  3. pipelinegypsy

    pipelinegypsy Fire Starter

    Thanks Al. I replaced the dust with pellets. Given this is a hot smoke I'm not sure why I started with dust anyway but... now I can't keep the pellets lit. I've had to restart them 3 times. I nuked them 3 times. 45 seconds twice then 25 seconds. So I know they are dry. I am positive they were well lit before I put them in each time, letting them burn 15 minutes with some nice coals. I have no water in the pan and the butt is only putting off rendered fat so far. None is dripping on the AMNPS, as I have a piece of aluminum pan deflecting the drippings to the water pan. The second time I put the pellets in, I pulled the chip loader out about 3 inches hoping to give the pellets a sure start, but when I went out there after 20 minutes it had gone out. I just relit them for the 3rd time and pulled the loader out all the way. Keeping my fingers crossed!
  4. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    At this point I think I would go back to the dust. At least it will stay lit.

  5. pipelinegypsy

    pipelinegypsy Fire Starter

    Yeah you are probably right. The other times it has gone out in under 30 minutes so I am giving it another 30 minutes. If it goes out this time I will switch back to the dust. I will go ahead and nuke some just in case I need it. 
  6. pipelinegypsy

    pipelinegypsy Fire Starter

    Well the last time I lit the pellets they stayed lit and burned great. After a couple of hours the smoke seemed to be getting a tad heavy so I pushed the chip tray in a little so it was out only about an inch. The loader was fully in. When I went out a little while ago to pull the AMNPS and foil the butt this is what I found. Anyone know what would cause the pellets to burn too fast and incompletely like this? Smoker temp was set to 260* the last few hours.

  7. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    The Dust under the black pellets is clogging the air holes and not allowing a complete burn. That is probably the reason they kept going out. The holes are small and must be clear at all times. Even when loading Pellets, I make sure they are whole and clean of any dust. When I get down to the bottom of a pellet container, mostly dust, I grind the remaining pellets to dust and use the remains for Cold Smoking. Dust was never intended to be used at temps above 170°F At 225+ Dust will burn up fast and give off a lot of smoke. Your meat should be fine.

    BTW...2 hours at 130°F is not only not necessary it can be dangerous. The low temp and Cold meat could cause bacterial growth. Meat that will be cooked Well Done should not be warmed as there is nothing to gain. Meat and specifically Beef that will be cooked Med/Rare to Medium, benefits from warming to give a more even edge to edge doneness. Ice Cold beef will cook with a thick well done ring and a Bullseye of Rare in the center. Since you plan to pull the pork, its well done all the way through and hence no benefit to warming, only risk...JJ
  8. pipelinegypsy

    pipelinegypsy Fire Starter

    JJ thank you so  much for that, tis greatly appreciated! I really only intended to leave it for 1 hour but other things got in the way. But it's good to know even 1 hour isn't necessary. I ruined a batch of sausage a while back due to it sweating because I put it in cold, even though it was very dry when it went in. I guess I was gun shy and didn't want to do the same to my butt. Again thank you... oh and it did turn out very good after all. When I was packing my husband's lunch this morning he made a request, with a very sweet "pretty please with sugar on top", for a BBQ sandwich. 
  9. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    You are welcome. Cured Sausage, like Kielbasa, goes in the smoker at 130°F for an hour to warm and dry more. But it is the Cure #1 that keeps the bacteria at bay. Regular sausage like Brats are Hot smoked at 225+ so the casing dries quickly. Low temp smoking fresh, aka no cure added, sausage like Brats, Italian and Breakfast sausage is super bad news because the process of grinding mixes surface bacteria throughout the meat and the center of a sausage is a comfy breeding ground at low temps. Glad to hear the Pork was a hit. Butts are pretty forgiving...Take care...JJ

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