trying to perfect a homemade smoker

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by dolphage2, Dec 6, 2009.

  1. dolphage2

    dolphage2 Newbie

    Greetings to all. My name is Randy from Troy, MI. I have a home made terra cotta pot smoker that I recently made and seem to be going through some growing pains on how to perfect the cooking process. First of all some info about the smoker: I bought a 17” pot and a plate that fits snuggly on top of it. I drilled a small hole in the top so I can insert a thermometer to keep track of the temp. I cut the bottom of the pot out to fit onto the grate on the side burner of my gas grill. So what I have is a propane smoker in which I put a smoker box full of chips directly on the bottom of the pot. I took my grill grate from my smokey joe grill and attached a pie plate to the bottom of it to use as a drip pan. Ok I think you probably get the idea of what I’m doing, now I christened it yesterday with a pork butt (bone out). I soaked the butt in a brine solution for 24 hrs then applied a rub and let that sit in the fridge for about 4 hours. I got the pot fired up with the wood chips and put the meat in it. I was able to keep my temp between 200 and 220 pretty much all day, changing the wood chips when needed. After about 8 hrs. I achieved an internal temp of 160. I removed the meat and let it rest for 30 minutes. When I went to pull it, to my amazement it was extremely tough and hard to pull a part. I was able to get enough for 2 good size sandwiches. It had a great smokey flavor but I’m confused why it was so tough. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
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  2. treegje

    treegje Master of the Pit

    Welcome to the SMF Randy,We are glad to have you onboard
     
  3. fire it up

    fire it up Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Welcome Randy.
    From what you said the problem was that you pulled it off way too early, 160 would be fine to take off and wrap in foil then place back on but you want to bring butts to 200-205 then take it off, let it rest and then it will pull perfectly for you.

    *ps If you still have the meat you could always chop it up and mix with some sauce and reheat and it should be ok.
     
  4. carpetride

    carpetride Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    185 for slicing and 200 for pulling.
     
  5. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

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  6. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to the forums, great to have you on board with us. Have always wanted to do a clay pot smoker, I think they are just really cool. The others beat me to it, bring that meat closer to 200 for pulling. Again, welcome and I look forward to seeing more of your smokes and input in the future.
     
  7. dolphage2

    dolphage2 Newbie

    Thanks to all for your valuable information. I won't give up til I get it right.
    I simmered the rest of it in vegetable stock and had it for lunch today, delicious!!!!!
     
  8. warthog

    warthog Smoking Fanatic

    Welcome to the SMF. Enjoy your stay.
     
  9. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

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  10. I'd like to weigh in on this. As a newbie and without any real smoking experience I do have a question on this smoker. Being a clay pot I would think that it would soak up any moisture until saturated. So if you didn't have a water pan of sorts wouldn't this kind of smoker absorb the moisture from your meat rendering it a little tough and dry? Just a thought.
     
  11. bandcollector

    bandcollector Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Welcome from Pittsburgh, PA.......that's quite a project....good luck with it.
     

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