The subjects, ready for seasoning
I wash any meat, but, I give special care to pork from cryovac as it can have a bit of a funk, I like to wash in cold water, then dry it and let it sit on counter for 10 minutes. Then the nose will tell me if it is good to go. Seasoning was to be pretty straight forward.
Rubbed up Butts, oh baby!
The butts were rubbed the night before with a medium dusting of Dizzy Dust Salt-free BBQ rub and allowed to rest in the fridge. The butts were then rubbed with a combination of 45% Simply Marvelous Sweet and Spicy and 45% Simply Marvelous Spicy Apple and 10% Phu Quoc medium grind white pepper. This was rubbed on and allowed to sit for one hour and reapplied just before hitting the pit. I do this to get a good built up bark.
3 hours into the cook
It went onto the pit and from about 3 hours to when I checked at 6 hours, it held this gorgeous red color. I considered foiling them to hold the color, but, alas, no large foil. So it was to be cooked au naturel. I had hoped for a short cook, but that was not to be, these stubborn butts took all of 15 hours to get to where the bone would pull.
See, clean bone!
Another shot of the hole left when the bone pulls clean and easy. I did end up panning the last 3 hours, to see if I could get some additional liquid. This worked out great, as I could add it back into the pulled meat. It was a nice dark unctuous gelatin once I got it cooled to remove the fat.
Nice clean pull, good dark coloring
From here it is all about letting the meat pull into the shreds and chunks it want to be in. I don't like mechanical shredders or trying to get everything just so. I like a variety of textures and sizes. I do reserve the bark and give it a good chop, as I like to have small bits throughout the mix. Here is an example of how the textures can vary.
Shreads, chunks and strips
And a mess o' pork which was drizzled with the reserved liquid from the cooking and a little BBQ sauce from Big Butz Sauces for a punch of moisture. You can see a wide variety of textures and colors, to me, this really represents what I like in pulled pork.
Mess O' Pork
This will later find it's way onto some cheap hamburger buns. Where is the beer?