New to smoking - first Boston Butt done - I have a couple of questions - Now with a Q View.

Discussion in 'Pork' started by gcrider900, Jul 4, 2011.

  1. I just picked up a Master Forge propane smoker.  Seasoned it yesterday, and did my first smoke today.  Smoked a small (3 lb) Boston Butt.  Hit it with some Gates BBQ dry rub last night and threw it on today.  Smoked it with Apple wood chips, which I had soaked overnight.  Tried to keep the temp at 225, but it fluctuated from 210 to about 260 late into the cooking time for a brief time.  Cooked it for about 4-1/2 hours to an internal temp of 190.  Did not wrap it at all - just threw it on and let it go.  When I pulled it out I wrapped it in foil and put it in a cooler for about an hour to rest.  I got a nice smoke ring and great flavor, but it didn't pull apart - I had to slice it.  I did notice when cleaning the smoker that I did run the water pan dry - I don't know when.  What's up?

    BTW, I also threw a 1 lb hunk of Bologna in with the Butt and let it smoke for the first 2 hours - it was awesome.  Did some corn also, which I soaked and put in for the last 1-1/2 hours.  The corn came out good too. 

    Why didn't the pork pull apart?  HELP!  Any other comments on technique are welcome as well.  I'm new to this and need all the help I can get.

    Pic of Butt just before I wrapped it up and tossed it in the cooler to rest:

    Last edited: Jul 4, 2011
  2. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Need to get it up to around 205 for pulling!!

     Where's the pics???


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  3. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Looking at the butt, it doesn't look done. Are you sure the temps were correct. As Craig says it needs to go to 205 for pulling.
  4. raptor700

    raptor700 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

     My "neighbor" is right!
  5. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Something is wrong.  Either your pit temps are off or your meat temps are off.  4.5 hours would be about half or even less time than you should have needed.  Check your therms and take the pulled pork to about 205 for me.  But don't do that in 4 or 5 hours or you are cooking way too hot.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  6. I was working with an oven thermometer hung in the middle of the chamber - not the one in the smoker door, which I know isn't accurate.  I took meat temps with a brand new digital meat thermometer.

    This Butt was only 3 lbs, so I felt like the cook time was about right for something that small.  1-1/2 hrs per pound as a rule, right?  it was still nice and juice inside - sorry - it didn't last long enough to get interior pics . 

    This particular small Butt was also pretty lean - it was missing the big layer of fat that most I've seen have.  Could this have something to do with it?

    I'll be trying again soon with a larger cut and making sure I get to 205 SLOWLY, keeping the temp 210 - 225.

    One thing about this - even the mistakes taste pretty good!
  7. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    1.5 hours is what they give as a guide.  The meat is done when it is done and I have found it usually takes longer than that.  You have to know your pit temps as well as your internal meat temps.  Wired probes are the way I go for this.  I also check them to be sure they are correct.

    That was a short cook time.  That leads me to believe you were cooking hot if you reached internal temp in that short time.  Reaching internal temp in that short time may not break down the collagen and elastin to make the meat tender enough to pull.  If it came out fine to your taste, what the hey?

    Good luck and good smoking.
  8. smoking gun

    smoking gun Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

     On a piece of meat that small I would have foiled it at 160 and pulled it off the pit at 195. Double wrap in foil and into the cooler. Temp will rise to 200ish and after an hour or so the meat should pull nicely and have a firmer texture,  If you overcook it you'll notice it gets mushy. Just personal preference but I like it firmer..

    Good luck and good smokes!

  9. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Yup about 205 to start pulling it. Easy way to check is to give the bone a tub and see if it starts to come loose. I would suggest a couple of good accurate therms.....a smokers best friend. [​IMG]
  10. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Do I give the bone a tub, or do I need a tub for the bone?

    Sorry Meat, the devil made me do it.  LOL

    Good luck and good smoking.
  11. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    GC900-or what ever, welcome to the SMF,and to answer your question in a few words... get a Bone-in Butt and cook at 220*f for 1.5Xthe weight (in hrs.) and when the bone pulls out easily,it's done.

    Have fun and...

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