got me a birthday present that has been on the wish list for years.
A smoker. I chose Weber’s Smoky Mountain Cooker (aka The
Weber Bullet) because it’s only a smoker (I don’t need two grills),
it’s a Weber product, it’s fairly compact and it’s tried and true
with a big following of Internet devotees.
Finally found the time to try out the The Weber smoker. I got
a pork blade shoulder from Safeway, marinated it with Scott’s
Barbecue Sauce (red hot vinegar-based) in a vacuum bag for
a day and started up the bullet for a ten hour smoke. Lighting
the charcoal and placing in some hickory wood and adjusting the
resultant heat to 225F and keeping it was there was straightforward.
We brushed the roast with a tomato-based barbecue sauce at the
start and again mid-way through.
So here we have:
A 7 pound pork butt yielded only 2.25 pounds of shredded
pork ready for tacos or pulled pork sandwiches. But I have
a problem with this meat. It’s fat. I didn’t pull
the roast apart until the following morning when the meat was
cold, so the fat was more clearly apparent than if the roast was
pulled hot and served a la minute.
I am beginning to gain insight as to why every smoker chef to
publish a cookbook and put his picture on it appears, shall we
say, well rounded. First, one needs fortification during
the arduous ten hour smoking process–perhaps a beer an hour.
Second, the product has a high fat content.
Frankly, we’re not sure we’re going to eat this stuff . . . I
got to find a better hunk of pork.
We’re cooking for the Pleasant Grove Church May Festival again
this year. Nothing fancy just hot dogs, hamburgers and BBQ.
Hardly worth wearing a chef’s jacket for this event, but we’ve
done it for about 15 years, so . . .
I decided that I would liven things up by smoking a pork shoulder
for the event. Above are the results of our first effort with
the Weber Bullet: a pork shoulder that looked great but
was really fat. I paid $1.95 a pound at the supermarket for a
6 pound shoulder that yielded less than 2 pounds of barely edible
meat. It was awful.
TLW always says that Mr. Arbuckle was right: “you get what
you pay for.” My experience is otherwise with most food products
described as organic. The only exception, to date, is meat.
So this time I bought a well husbanded boneless pork shoulder
from our local Organic Butcher. This shoulder, from a farm
in Pennsylvania, came in at 8.5 pounds and went for $6.00 a pound!
I brought the hunk home and vacuum-marinated it overnight in
Scott’s Barbecue Sauce, as before.
I then got up early the next morning and started the smoke at
0730. 13.5 hours later, the shoulder’s temp hit 200F as
I took it off to cool. It shredded effortlessly and has
great color and a nice smoke ring. Above all, the meat is
as lean, moist and tasty as this cut can get. Yield?
4.2 pounds. I threw away at most a half pound as too fat-ladened.
Bargain pull pork sandwiches coming up this Saturday. Meat
and charcoal: $65. . . .yet sandwiches will go for $2.50
each. Maybe Mr. Arbuckle will show up.
Update: Go they went! We sold out the pulled pork
half way through the event.
The Organic Butcher has an informative Web site at: theorganicbutcher.com.
The Weber Bullet, at least at our deck, needs to be more mobile.
So a trip to the hardware store and we have . . .