My first Picnic Shoulder

Discussion in 'Pork' started by iggythump, Mar 23, 2015.

  1. iggythump

    iggythump Smoke Blower Group Lead

    Here goes my first run at pulled pork.  Obtained a small (3.5 lb) picnic shoulder from the store along with a 7 lb butt to smoke at a later time.  Applied salt to cut the night before.  Coated meat in yellow mustard and my home brew rub a couple hours before going on the smoker.  Prepped the mini at 250 and placed the meat on.  I planned for the meat to follow the 1-1.5 hr per pound...Not the case here, this lowly 3.5 picnic smoked for roughly 10 hrs, but still turned out excellent.  I sprayed the shoulder every hour with a 80% pure apple juice/20% apple cider vinegar mix.  Smoked over hickory to an IT of 205 and pulled from the smoker and immediately pulled since it was nearly midnight when the meat was finished.  I slacked on the pics this go around...terribly sorry folks.  Without further ado, the qview (or lack thereof).

    Thanks for looking fellas.

    After mustard and rub applied and placed in the fridge for ~2 hrs.

    Skipped the middle steps and straight to a portion of the pulled pork view.  You can see the smoke ring, bark, etc.  Paired with some coarse slaw made by my wife makes a FINE sandwich.

    Again, sorry for the lack of step-by-step and pics.  I'll do better next time
  2. b-one

    b-one Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    :droolLooks like it went well congrats! Next time try skipping the spraying with a like size butt see if you can save yourself some time. The pork should have enough fat to stay moist IMHO. Now pass me a sammie!!:drool
  3. iggythump

    iggythump Smoke Blower Group Lead

    Never thought, but you're probably right.  I'm sure that was the problem.  I didn't think the spray would influence the temp that way.  Oh well, live and learn haha
  4. sota d

    sota d Smoking Fanatic

    Probably opening the door every half hour made it take longer more than the actual spray. But it definitely turned out great! very nice looking Pulled Pork. I've spritzed before with rum and AJ, I think it helps get a nice bark, which gives the PP a nice texture, but you pay for it with  extra time. Thanks for posting pics, David.
  5. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice job! I agree, the spritzing does little more than add time to the smoke. Not only are you opening the door, but the mist you're spraying in there acts as a very effective air conditioner for your smoker, drastically dropping the temp and keeping it down while the surface moisture evaporates.
    Now, please don't take this the wrong way, I'm only offering this as a helpful observation, but the photo of the finished product looks like it's on the dry side. This could just be the photo, but if it was actually dry, it could be the final internal temp that's the culprit. I'm guessing you probed the meat dead center? If that's the case, the temperature of 90% of the meat was actually a good bit warmer than 205°. What I've found through a lot of trial and error is that when the center is at 190°-195° the rest of the meat is at the perfect doneness. Again, I'm not bashing your efforts, it looks great and I'm sure it was delicious. I'm just sharing what has worked for me.
    One more thing and I'll shut up. You mentioned you didn't rest the meat. In the future, try and allow time for at least a one hour rest. This is a vital part of the process, possibly the most vital part. It allows the meat to gradually cool, permitting the fibers to relax and re-absorb the juices. I always sort of rolled my eyes when people would talk about the importance of resting meat. Then I tried it and the difference was night and day.
    Anyway, thank you for sharing your efforts!
  6. iggythump

    iggythump Smoke Blower Group Lead

    It wasnt terribly dry but you're right, it was on the dry side for sure.  I never thought about pulling at a lower dead center temp but that makes perfect sense.  No bashing at all, I'm definitely no professional and I'm more than excited to receive any and all advice when I post my smokes on here.  I normally will rest the cut for at least an hour post-smoke but the IT didn't reach optimal temp until nearly midnight and I had to be at work at 6 the following morning.  I wasn't entirely sure what to do in that situation so I pulled it.  I was not anticipating the smoke to take as long as it did so that was completely my error.  I received compliments on the PP as I had a little left over for some of the guys at the shop to try, I'm sure it could have been a lot better though.  Again, I greatly appreciate all of your advice boatbum

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