Pulled Pork Failed smoke

Discussion in 'Pork' started by ron22, Apr 26, 2015.

  1. ron22

    ron22 Newbie

    Sorry no Qveiw but we have all seen pulled pork before :)

    Anyways here it goes.

    Bought a 12 lbs bone in shoulder/butt. (Largest I have done by the way)  Figuring 1.5 hours per pound it should take about 18 hours. I figure I will just start it at night and go to bed. So warm up the MES 30 to 230F and light my AMNPS. Get everything ready put AMNPS and roast in smoker. About 1 hour later check it out everything looks good so off to bed.

    Get up in the morning and AMNPS was not lit right. So ~ 9 hours with no smoke. Internal temp was 170F, I decide not to foil it and try to get some smoke. Used the normal MES 30 chip tray for the rest of the time until an internal temp of 210F ~ 6 more hours.

    Pork turned out great but there was NO noticeable smoke.

    Why did it not absorb any smoke towards the end? What could I have do to "save" it?
  2. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    How many times did you put chips in the loader ? What kind of chips ?
  3. sota d

    sota d Smoking Fanatic

    I have read on this forum that meat only takes on smoke flavor for the first few hours of the smoke. Then it is cooked enough that the exterior of the meat is not as penetrable and the smoke can no longer get into the meat, only on the surface.
  4. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dave, smoke will penetrate the meat throughout a smoke.... Yes it does take on more smoke in the beginning, but it will continue to take smoke throughout as long as smoke is present... The taking of smoke may differ from each piece of meat but it will still absorb the smoke to some degree til smoke is not present !
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2015
  5. sota d

    sota d Smoking Fanatic

    OK, good to know. I read that somewhere here awhile ago, but don't know from who. Good to hear from a trusted source on the matter. Thanks, David.
  6. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dave, actually it's an age ol debate that'll get some folks all fired up either way.... LOL. I done a small test of my own a few times with different meat & that's what convinced me... Had to experiment ya know ! :biggrin:
  7. mummel

    mummel Master of the Pit

    The bigger question is, why the AMPS fail?
  8. The AMNPS failed because ether the chip loader wasn't pulled out a little, The pellets were damp, or you didn't get it going good in the beginning. I always microwave the pellets or dust for a minute (don't walk away because you can catch them on fire) You can also put the AMNPS in the MES while you are preheating it. I look at the clock and spend a full 15 minutes getting it going. When I rush it I end up having problems.

    And I agree that food will take on smoke as long as the smoke is present.

    Happy smoken.

  9. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    Not correct.
  10. sota d

    sota d Smoking Fanatic

    yes,I was corrected by WateringHoleBrew above. I shouldn't have posted that because it was hearsay and not personal experience. Lesson learned.
  11. smokin_all_night

    smokin_all_night Meat Mopper OTBS Member

    What was the temperature of your meat when you placed it in the smoker? At what temperature did you set your smoker? I ask because if your meat was too cold and your smoker too hot, then the meat may develop a "skin" that prevents smoke penetration. It's a good idea to not place just thawed meat in a hot smoker.
  12. Care to explain this "skin" a little better? Any sources that talk about? Sounds like malarky to me....just sayin. My meats go straight from the fridge, to seasoning, to the smoker. Never had issues with getting that smoky flavor.
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2015
  13. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Ummm what? I put cold meat in my smokers all the time and they never form a "skin".
  14. smokin_all_night

    smokin_all_night Meat Mopper OTBS Member

    I have had issues when too cold meat was placed in a 250degree or so smoker. The temperature had gotten a little away from me and was a little too hot. The meat developed a rind. although the meat was tender inside after 16 hours (that's what it took to reach 200F internal temperature) there was NO smoke flavor at all. I consulted with a friend that competes and has won many prizes and he is the one who told me never to place cols meat in a hot smoker. Let the meat thaw thoroughly and even warm up on the kitchen counter for an hour or so before smoking. He also advised me to bring up the smoker temperature slowly over an hour and 1/2.

    When this happened to me, the outside skin of the shoulder had a noticeable rind to it. It was tough.

    No malarkey. Believe it or don't.
  15. ron22

    ron22 Newbie


    I loaded the chip tray 3 or 4 times. Hickory

    My bet is AMNPS failed because I did not get it going good enough to start.

    Smoker was at 230 when I placed the cold meat in it. Very cold but not frozen the part of fridge it was in is colder then rest
  16. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    Say what? That is total bull.
  17. One of the reasons I mothballed the MES 30 for awhile was not getting smokey flavor from the chips.  Sometimes, I got great clean smoke flavor; and, sometimes, i think it was just pumping out creosote.  I think it all started happening after i accidentaly put a slight bend in the bottom of the chip tray.  Do you soak your chips or run them dry?  I never figured out the magic in the MES.  I bet you'll get better results once you master using your AMNPS in the unit.  My last batch of ribs in the MES was pretty darn good, with a clean smokey taste (AMNTS 12").    
    Last edited: Apr 28, 2015
  18. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Not exactly a friendly, helpful response.
    While I'm not clear on how or why a "rind" might form on a pork butt, I have had salmon and boneless chicken breasts get a leathery exterior. In my experience it happened to the salmon because the pellicle was allowed to dry too much, and to the chicken because the smoker was just too hot.
    As for smoke being able to penetrate? I don't know. Since both were pretty small, thin items, I didn't really notice a lack of smoke.
    I have seen the "science" behind whether or not food will take on smoke after a certain amount of time or after a certain temperature is reached. I look at it this way. The first few hours are where the smoke gets "in" the meat, hence the smoke ring. However it only gets so far. Otherwise the smoke ring on a 20 hour pork butt would just go all the way through. So, in my opinion, after a certain point, smoke is getting "on" the meat. Is this good or bad? I guess it's all down to individual taste and the quality of the smoke.
    For me, I add 3 or 4 good sized chunks at the beginning and then no more. I'll have visible TBS for a few hours and after that I can still smell it, but it lessens as the hours go by. This works for me and my family.

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