One of the most popular ways to cook pork inexpensively, with extremely tasty results, is by smoking it low and slow over around 12 hours until it has absorbed all of the flavors from the rub, smoke, and it’s own fat and collagen.
The meat has a succulence that has to be tried to be believed, and as cuts of meat go, there are few better ways to provide a large number of heads with a great meal.
Pulled pork sandwiches, rollups, you can even make a hash for breakfast with the leftovers! It is a truly versatile cut in the sense that it can be used in so many different ways.
The best tasting pulled pork is comes only from a good slab of meat that is thoroughly riddled with delicious fat and loaded with copius amounts of collagen.
When a decent piece of pork butt is cooked low and slow, the fat and collagen melts together throughout the meat which in turn internally bastes the muscle fibers which results in a much more tender and moist result. The cooking process usually takes eight to twelve hours or more, and this slow cooking process ensures that the finished pork is moist, flavorsome and truly delicious.
It is best to buy partial butts in the 4-5 pound range as they are particularly good owing to the fact that they cook quickly and there is a plenty of the crispy, crusty surface, referred to as “Mrs. Brown” by BBQ pork lovers.
On to the recipe so you can make your own great tasting BBQ pork butt!
BBQ Pork Butt Ingredients
1 nicely marbled pork butt, around 5 pounds in total weight
3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
1/3 cup BBQ Rub –
2 cups hickory wood chips for smoke (use your favorite, apple, cherry or oak taste great too)
10 large rolls or buns (try panini, ciabatta or baguettes, they are all good)
1 cup of your favorite BBQ sauce such as Bone Suckin’ Regular, it’s nice and thick
This recipe will leave you with around 3 pounds or so of meat which will be plenty to fill up almost a dozen sandwiches.
If by some miracle there is actually any pulled pork left over, it will keep well in the freezer for up to a couple of months. Just make sure that the meat is completely sealed in a suitable airtight container.
Allow yourself quarter of an hour to remove the excess fat and rub the meat with your favorite blend of spices, or pre-made/bought rub.
Cooking time. Allow 8-12 hours or 1.5-2 hours per pound at 225F. If you push the heat up to around 280F, you can reduce the cooking time to 1 hour per pound of meat. Once finished, make sure that you allow time to pull the meat, which should take around half an hour if you do it by hand.
Remove most of the of fat from the outside of the pork cut so that the meat takes on the flavors from the rub, rather than the fatty exterior. Now tie up the meat well with string so that everything stays together during cooking.
Rinse and dry the meat then lightly brush the pork with vegetable oil on all sides so that the rub sticks to the meat properly. You can also lay on a coating of mustard first if you like for extra flavor. Now work in your favorite BBQ rub into the meat and then refridgerate it, covered for at least 6 hours. The longer, the better.
Set up your grill for indirect cooking and aim for 225c before putting the meat onto the grill then add your chosen prepared wood chips to the charcoal.
Always use a temperature probe when cooking any joint of meat as this takes out the guesswork and gives you a clear and accurate reading of the internal temperature of the meat.
When the internal temperature of the pork hits around 190, the chances are that it is ready to eat, but you still need to check visually to be 100 percent sure.
You should find that the outside of the meat is a nice deep brown color or possibly a blackened, charred color. Either way the meat is in great shape! Some rubs have a tendency to impart darker colors onto meats than others, so bear this in mind when checking your meat at the end of cooking!
Test the meat at this stage with a fork, and give it a turn. If the meat gives little resistance you are done. If on the other hand the fork is very hard to rotate, it needs a little longer, so drop the lid and let it cook for another 30-40 minutes.
When the meat is done you should let it rest for an hour or so before pulling (the fun part!), and you should be left with delicious, mouthwatering pulled BBQ pork that will look like this.
When you have pulled your pork, it should look pretty good!
At this stage you are good to go, you can serve up your pulled pork into sandwiches, burger baps with salad or slaw, with a side of beans and corn, into mexican fajitas with sliced peppers, red onion and sauce, the list it pretty much endless!
Pulled pork keeps very well, and as mentioned earlier, can be frozen down and kept for a long while in the freezer if neccessary. If you choose to refridgerate the meat, make sure that it is kept in an airtight container wrapped in foil so that the moisture is retained in the meat.
You can eat your BBQ pulled pork how you like. Try it with beans and slaw served up in a large bun and enjoy!
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