Mop or Not

Discussion in 'Pork' started by wyatt2050, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. wyatt2050

    wyatt2050 Fire Starter

    I have been smoking butts for a couple of years. I have always mopped every hour. Is this a waste of my time? The only reason I do it is because that is the way I was taught. I have recently being doing some pretty large smokes and it seems like it is taking me forever to finish. Any thoughts on this topic
  2. guvna

    guvna Smoking Fanatic

    i rarely mop anymore. although, i do think there are added benefits from mopping. great tasting bark being one.
  3. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I just cook for myself and whoever is handy and hungry when everything is done and I'm certainly no expert..... and not one to make light of anyones methods. I personally think that you are being counter productive in mopping. I would rather leave the lid closed and let the meat cook. If your mopping for flavor.... you can add that in a marinade... rub.... brine... etc. If your mopping for moisture.... the meat is cooking... it isn't going to absorb moisture while it is cooking. You may be adding a little moisture to the outside but that is quickly steamed away as soon as you put down the lid and I think you loose the moisture you have in the smoker by opening it up. I'm not a mopper.....

    Disclaimer..... this is just my humble opinion.
  4. guvna

    guvna Smoking Fanatic

    true... but if the moisture in apple juice evaporates it leaves a sticky, smokey concentrated apple flavor behind. right? [​IMG]
  5. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'm not sayin it doesn't flavor.... I'm sayin I would rather leave the lid on and flavor without opening to mop. I use apple juice in my water bowl. There would be a very limited amount of sticky concentrated apple flavor left from what you could mop on. Gave me an great idea though.
  6. jamesb

    jamesb Smoking Fanatic

    Put me down in the non-mopping category. I used to mop because I thought I was supposed to, but never found any real difference between mopped and non-mopped meats... YMMV.
  7. mikey

    mikey Smoking Fanatic

    No mop or spritz here either. Just as an example if you mop or spritz every hour and you're doing a estimated 10 hr. smoke, and you figure it takes 10 minutes for your smoker to recover, you've just added 100 minutes to your cook time. I might spritz when I take a butt or ribs off. Just my .01 worth
  8. rivet

    rivet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Never mopped my butts, occasionally spritz. I do mop brisket, though.
  9. wyatt2050

    wyatt2050 Fire Starter

    Thanks for the input guys...I think I will stop mopping
  10. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit

    I always mopped at first. But only mop now occasionally to add flavor. I have a water smoker, and mop or not, there is no differance in the moistness or texture of the meat.

    I also see no significant differance in cook time mopping or not. I don't leave the lid off long when I mop though.
  11. I've found that if you will wrap the meat in foil about and hour before you remove it from the heat, that will help it maintain moisture, therefore there is no need to mop.
  12. irishteabear

    irishteabear Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I just did a butt this past weekend. Took the fatcap off and didn't bother to mop or spray. It came out great so I will be doing it that way from now on.
  13. coyote-1

    coyote-1 Smoking Fanatic

    I've found mopping & moisture make a big difference in the outcome of the surfaces of my smoked poultry and 'small' meat (such as ribs). After the meat's been on 90 minutes or so I mop roughly once or twice per hour, depending on weather (less in cold weather) and on what seems to be working. And I do like a drip pan full of liquid (beer, wine, vinegar, water, apple cider, etc) as my baffle; the additional moisture keeps the surface of the meat or poultry from drying out.

    Posted in another thread that a few weeks ago I tried the no-mop method on a couple chickens and the meat was delicious but the skin leathery. So I'll sacrifice an extra hour of cooking time to get the results I want.
  14. gnubee

    gnubee Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I usually spritz when and if I turn the meat over. I poured some orange brandy into my spritzer and while waiting for the 1/2 way point to arrive I began spritzing my poor parched tongue and mouth once in a while. After a bit I spritzed the meat and turned it. Then more of the mouth spritzing. I think the direct spritzing tasted better than the meat spritzing did so I have now thrown out all pretense and just drink the brandy and let the meat flavour itself. [​IMG]

    I now no longer spritz very often either.
  15. wyatt2050

    wyatt2050 Fire Starter

    what does taking the fat cap off do?
  16. waysideranch

    waysideranch Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Saves your heart. LOL. I leave fat cap on so when i'm chopping pulled pork my meat has more fat content. Makes for yummy sammies!
  17. bigsteve

    bigsteve Master of the Pit

    1) Cooks quicker/less fuel
    2) Creates bark all around the meat.

    Or so I'm told. Haven't tried it w/o a fat cap yet
  18. pignit

    pignit Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Well you know the bottom line here.... your just gonna have to try both methods and see which one you like best. And if they don't turn out the way you think they should then your gonna need to do it again.... maybe a different kind of wood...... maybe have to buy a new smoker..... the one you've been lookin at. Then the remote temp gauge that's surely gonna make a difference. Probably be better sliced up with a new slicer. Now your gonna need another table out in the garage to work on....... you start reading the sales flyers from all the local grocery stores and just stop in to check things out to see if anything is on sale they didn't put in the flyer..... it gets worse and worse... or better and better.... according to the way you look at it. I like to look at it as a happy illness.

    Have fun!

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