Archive for May, 2010


Smokin’ your Butt

Smokin’ your Butt


South Carolina Smoked Pork Shoulder

adapted from : BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen (Workman, 2003) and as shown on Primal Grille
Using my Char broil grille/smoker for smoking and roasting small cuts of meat, that is, ribs chicken etc., I wanted to try something bigger. The warehouse club happen to have a Boston Butt that was about 6 Lb.,
…SOLD !!!
Some of the challenge was the the smoker/grille is small, only about 14 inches in diameter compared to most of the other grilles on the market but it did have the ability to set up the fire pan, water pan and grille grates at different levels from direct grille, indirect grille and with or without a water/drip pan. The charbroil also has a door on the belly of the cylinder to add more charcoal, wood etc. easily to the fire pan when it’s in the lower smoker position. At a reasonable price these make good starter or small batch smoker without killing your budget.

My charbroil has several years of use and when previously smoking and roasting it been a guessing game as to what temperature the grille was actually putting out. This season I purchased a new replacement thermometer temperature gauge as the one supplied with the grill no longer worked and it also was marked low, medium and high. had a 3″ gauge shipping included that would do the job a 3″ RC Adjustable BBQ, Grill, Smoker Thermometer (100 to 550 F) w/ Free Shipping ,Sold by: River Country at $19.97 each. It seemed pricey but it is a heavy duty unit compared to the one that came with the grille, 3″ makes it easy to read and it’s stainless steel construction. I only needed to drill a 3/8″ hole in the dome cover of the charbroil and I was ready to smoke and roast with confidence. I also replaced the short legs on the grille with longer ones so that the top of the grille is at a more comfortable height.


Now the the grille was ready here’s the recipe:

Source: BBQ USA by Steven Raichlen (Workman, 2003)

Method: Indirect grilling or smoking

For the rub and Boston butt:
2 teaspoons dry mustard
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon ground white pepper
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 Boston butt (bone-in pork shoulder roast), 5 to 7 pounds
For the mop sauce:
2 cups distilled white vinegar
1/2 cup Dijon-style mustard
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon salt
2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

Mix up and apply the rub and allow the butt to sit a bit at room temperature

This Butt had a good fat cap and layered fat throughout and a bone in the end.

Usually with indirect heating, a drip pan is set in the middle of the charcoal pan to separate the coals and to keep the meat indirectly over the heat source so it is roasted or smoked without being grilled or burned on the bottom with intense heat . Since the charbroil allows you to set the fire pan at a greater distance from the the cooking grille than most other grilles and that the small size of the fire pan would limit the amount of charcoal you could use if you placed a drip pan in the middle of the fire bowl. I set the fire pan at the lowest position in the cylinder and decided to use a deflector of sorts on the next level up and then the meat on the top most level.

(artist rendering of smoker setup)
This would allow me to fill the entire charcoal pan with coals and still have good circulation of heat and smoke under the meat by placing the meat directly on the grill grate.
Usually the water pan would be used if needed and placed on the level as the deflector and I have thought about using the water pan as a deflector but it’s diameter might block too much of the heat. For the deflector I wrapped the middle section a grille grate with tin foil about the same size as the footprint of the meat. An old toaster oven tray made perfect drip pan just about the right size placed on the deflector grate.

Make the mop sauce

Whisk together in a bowl :

2 cups distilled white vinegar

1/2 cup Dijon-style mustard

1/2 cup water

1 tablespoon salt

2 teaspoons freshly ground pepper

Let it smoke !!!

with a starter chimney light up some charcoal and fill the pan with the coals when they are ready. For smoke I used a combination of Traegers oak pellets which I added directly to the fire pan over the charcoals, they don’t flare up or requiring soaking , I add about a cup or so every hour , I did also add some soaked oak wood pieces later on .

Now every hour tend the fire and and the smoke by adding a few more briquettes and wood chips/pellets and mop the the meat. It will take on a nice even smoky colored hue.

Also keep and eye on the temp gauge mine went between 225 degrees and 275 degrees.

The butt didn’t seem to be brown too much so I didn’t cover with foil as the recipe indicated

you can prepare the mustard BBQ sauce while the smoking is going on.

South Carolina Mustard Barbecue Sauce
Makes about 3 cups
1 tablespoon butter
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup Dijon mustard
3/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
3/4 cup distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon hot sauce (preferably Crystal), or more to taste
Coarse salt (kosher or sea)
Freshly ground black pepper
Melt the butter in a heavy non reactive saucepan over medium heat. Add the
onion and garlic and cook until soft but not brown, about 3 minutes.
Stir in the mustard, brown sugar, vinegar, and hot sauce and add 1/2 cup of
water. Let the sauce simmer, uncovered, until thick and richly flavored, 6 to
10 minutes. Taste for seasoning, adding more hot sauce as necessary and
seasoning with salt and pepper to taste.

.I let the butt smoke roast for about 7 hours and used a quick read thermometer to gauge the doneness , It didn’t quite get to the 195 degrees recommend temp and judging by the shrinking of the fat cap and the roast itself, off the grill it came it was closer to 185 degrees or so.

Let the butt sit for 20 minutes

Now you can shred, slice or cube the butt if you prefer.

finally the results !!!! This was one of the most juicy, tender and flavorful meats I have tasted. The smaller end of the butt was really smoked through like a cured ham flavor.

For a $1.78 per pound piece of meat, and a low and slow smoke roast outdoors, well worth the effort !!!

serve with fresh pickles and BBQ sauce on hamburger buns.


May 2010

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