Today's Smoke: Smoked Pulled Chicken, Brined Turkey Leg, Boston Butt w/ Cheerwine Marinade, and Ribs

Discussion in 'Pork' started by corndog, May 11, 2013.

  1. Hi all,

    I'm presenting today's smoke for your Q - viewing pleasure.

    I prepped everything last night. This morning, I started the final prepping for smoking about 7 am. It took me until 9 am to get the smoker to temp and everything on the racks and in the smoker. I am using a 2:1 mixture of oak and cherry pellets. Plain water in the water pan. For some unknown reason, I had a terrible time getting the AMNPS smoking properly this morning.

    I used the following rub in all recipes that call for its use today.

    My Favorite Dry Rub:
    1 cup sugar
    1 cup sea salt
    1/2 cup brown sugar (dried in warm oven on jelly roll pan)
    5 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon chili powder
    2 Tablespoons + 2 teaspoons ground cumin
    4 teaspoons Accent (MSG)
    4 teaspoons black pepper, freshly ground
    4 teaspoons garlic powder
    4 teaspoons onion powder

    Smoked Pulled Chicken

    5 lbs of chicken thighs, about 24 pieces ( I got the butcher to de-bone)
    Brine (recipe below)
    Yellow mustard or Olive Oil (optional)
    Jeff's Rub
    Jeff's barbecue sauce recipe
    *Used Jeff's recipe except I used my favorite rub, although jeff's rub is excellent, as is his BBQ sauce.

    The Brine:
    1/2 gallon water
    1/2 cup kosher salt
    1/2 cup dark brown sugar
    3 TBS Louisiana hot sauce

    Pour salt into water, and mix well until the salt is completely dissolved. Add remaining brine ingredients and stir.

    The recipe called for brining thighs for four hours. I brined the chicken thighs overnight and rinsed well. Then soaked them in fresh cool plain water for about an hour.

    Dried thighs well, and placed in a bowl.
    Added yellow mustard and mixed well with gloved hands.
    Added 1/4 cup of my favorite rub and mixed well.
    Added a second 1/4 cup of rub and mixed well.
    Placed each thigh on a rack, being carful to tuck flesh under skin.

    Up close and personal:

    Boston Butt

    I picked up a 10 lb butt on sale for .99 cents a lb. it's going to be a long day smoking this big ol' butt!

    Marinade Ingredients:
    • ¼ cup dark brown sugar
    • ¼ cup Cheerwine or any cherry cola
    • ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 3 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 teaspoon minced onion
    • 1 teaspoon black pepper
    • ½ teaspoon salt
    • ½ teaspoon minced garlic
    • ½ teaspoon Cardamom

    Injected butt with a mixture of:
    I can apple juice concentrate
    1 Tblsp liquid smoke
    2 Tblsp Rub
    1/4 cup brown sugar
    1/4 cup Cheerwine

    After injecting butt, placed in a ziplock bag and placed in a large mixing bowl. Poured marinade into bag, removed air, and sealed bag. Let it take a nap in the fridge over night.

    This morning, I removed the butt from the fridge and discarded marinade. Place butt on rack, and let it drain over sink while prepping other items to be smoked.

    Ribs in Pineapple Whiskey Sauce

    • 2 to 3 Tbsp cooking oil
    • 1 cup chopped onion
    • 6 cloves minced garlic
    • 1 1/2 cups catsup
    • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
    • 1/2 cup brown sugar
    • 3/4 cup molasses
    • 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
    • 6 ounces tomato paste
    • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
    • 1/2 tablespoon coarse salt
    • 3 tablespoons hot pepper sauce
    • 3/4 cup whiskey or bourbon
    • your favorite rub
    • 15 oz. can pitted cherries
    • 3 lbs. chuck pineapple
    • 2 racks baby back ribs*

    *I used two racks of spareribs and got the butcher to cut them baby back style. I prefer the flavor and texture of spareribs and they are less expensive.

    In a medium sauce pan, heat oil and add onions and garlic. Sauté until onions are translucent. Add next 10 ingredients, stir to mix well, and simmer for a few minutes.

    Prep ribs with rub, and place in large foil pan.

    Pour sauce around ribs; just enough to cover bottom of pan and a ¼ of the thickness of ribs. Reserve the remaining sauce.

    Pour cherries and juice over ribs, and add pineapple and juice to ribs.

    All tucked in with cherries and pineapple.

    Cook at 250° to 275° F for at least 1 ½ hours, and then pull ribs out of sauce and return to pan on top of pineapple, and continue cooking until ribs are tender.
    Remove ribs from pan and plate.

    Pour sauce, cherries, and pineapple, from foil pan, back into pot with reserved sauce. Re-heat by simmering a few minutes. Serve sauce on the side for dipping.

    The two left over racks from the spareribs after being cut baby back style.
    A simple coating of my favorite rub, and ready for the smoker.

    Brined Turkey Leg

    A 2 lb turkey leg!
    brine (see below)

    Slaughterhouse Poultry Brine
    1 ½ Gal Water
    ½ C Salt - Kosher
    ½ C Dark Brown Sugar
    2 tsp Garlic Powder
    2 tsp Onion Powder
    2 tsp Cajun Spice (Louisiana Cajun Seasoning)
    2 tsp Celery Seed

    Had the turkey leg in the freezer with brine in bag. Thawed it out in fridge over a couple of days. Rinsed leg and soaked in cool plain water for a bit, then dried it and added to smoker rack. Naked, no rub!

    Loaded and ready to pull the trigger!

    Standing guard...well, lying:

    Three hours in:

    Pulled chicken thighs at 3 hours.

    4:00 pm/ 6.5 hrs.: just pulled one set of ribs, which had only rub on them.

    Had to sample them to make sure they are safe to eat! 😜

    Pulled the turkey leg at the same time. 170 degrees F internal temp. It looks great!

    Pulled other ribs at 5:00 pm.

    9:00 pm: still working on the butt. Foiled it at 160 degrees IT. It is now 171 degrees, so I have a while to go!
    Last edited: May 11, 2013
    webowabo likes this.
  2. Updated with lots of q-views!
  3. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Man, that's one beautiful smoker full of food!! Everything looks delicious! Nice job, Dog!

  4. Thanks SeenRed! It all tastes great! Still waiting on the butt. It has just hit 160 degrees F, so off to foil it, and wait some more.
  5. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    I love to see a Full smoker!!!
    Everything looks Great!!!
    Thanks for all the detail and the recipes!!!
  6. Thanks S2k9k. Still waiting to pull the butt.

    Finally, pulled the butt off the smoker at 12:15 am. The internal temp was 207. Placed it in a cooler, tucked it in with towels for a nap, and I went to bed. At 6:00 am this morning I took it out of the cooler. It was still quite warm. Drained the juices off, and placed them in the fridge. I forgot to take a photo before tearing it apart, but here's the final product.
    Last edited: May 12, 2013

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