Next time pork butts go on sale, use this recipe for pulled pork and smoke a couple of 'em. Smoked low and slow, the pork becomes falling apart tender...just what's needed for making mouthwatering pulled pork.
Pork butts are cut from the upper shoulder of the hog. Being well
marbled with fat, they are perfect for pulled pork recipes. Along with
the fat, they contain quite a bit of connective tissues. The fat and
some of the connective tissue is broken down during the long smoke.
When smoked at 225-250°F, a pork butt will take from 1-1/2 to 2 hours per pound to complete. And that's just the smoking time. It doesn't include any of the time spent trimming and seasoning the roast.
Pork butts go by many different names, depending on which part of the
country you're in when you're shopping for your pork. Any of the
following will make perfectly good pulled pork:
This recipe uses mustard to help hold in the moisture and hold on the
seasonings. Begin by trimming some of the excess fat off of the butt.
Just trim the surface fat down to about 1/4 inch thick. There will be
fat pockets that go deep into the roast-leave those in place. If you cut
too much of the fat out, the roast will fall apart. And anyway, that
fat adds flavor and keeps the meat moist as it smokes. It's good stuff!
Combine the dry ingredients. Coat the pork butt with mustard, then with the dry rub mix. Let the butt rest at room temperature while you prepare your smoker.
Get the smoker up to at least 225°F, and better yet up around 240°F. Add the first addition of smoke wood, then the pork butt, fattiest side up. Use a remote cooking thermometer if you have one, inserting the probe into the center of the roast. Avoid positioning the probe tip in fat. It needs to be in muscle tissue for an accurate reading.
When the first smoke wood addition quits smokin', put in another. A cup of chips, or about a 2 inch cube of wood is what you want. Soak the wood in water, and wrap it in foil. Hickory is fantastic for this recipe, and oak is good too.
Rotate and flip the pork butt every two hours as it smokes. Baste it with vinegar sauce combined with oil to keep it moist and to add flavor.
When the pork reaches 195-205°F, remove it from the smoker and let it rest for 30 minutes to an hour. Begin pulling the roast apart. Remove the bone and any large pockets of fat or veins you may see. Using a pair of heavy forks, start pulling the meat apart into small chunks. Or use a great big knife and chop it as fine as you like.
Either way, this recipe for pulled pork creates some mighty tasty meat for sandwiches. Traditionally the meat is drizzled with vinegar based sauce, and then served on a bun with a dollop of cole slaw. Sounds good to me! Let's Eat!
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