Sunday, March 7, 2010

Head To Head Butts....or is that Butt to Butt?

One of the things about pork butts (relax, it's the "butt" of the pork shoulder) is that they almost invariably come in pairs when you buy them. The great thing about that is that it gives you the opportunity to try two different recipes side by side.

So while I was working on a little upcoming project yesterday, I tried my favorite commercial rub against the Southern Succor Rub from Cheryl and Bill Jamison's classic BBQ book Smoke and Spice. Dave (Old Dave's Po-Farm) used the Southern Succor Rub on something the other day and I'd been wanting to try it.

Southern Succor Rub (aka The Renowned Mr. Brown)
source: Smoke and Spice

1/4 cup ground black pepper
1/4 cup paprika (It didn't specify so I used Hungarian paprika)
1/4 cup Turbinado sugar
2 Tablespoons table salt (I used Kosher)
2 teaspoons dry mustard
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

The butts were each 7lbs. Both had were injected with Chris Lilly's pork shoulder injection recipe.

The one on the left has Billy Bones Competition Rub, my favorite commercial rub. The one on the right was rubbed with the Southern Succor Rub.

Both butts were smoked on the Big Green Egg with cherry/hickory wood at a 250f temp for right at 10 and 1/2 hours. Then I wrapped them in foil and let them sit in a cooler for a few hours.

CONFESSION TIME: I've been a bad Egger. Usually that Egg is just the most cooperative thing, doing my bidding. But I had to work with it almost the entire cook, keeping the vents open more than I normally would and the temp never really "dialed in". It was constant adjustments and I ended up burning 18 hours worth of lump coal in the 10 1/2 hour cook. Remember how my fire bowl cracked last November and I got a new one? Um....I never swapped them out yet since the cracked one hadn't broken yet. I just kept working around the cracked one since it worked. But that meant I wasn't cleaning out BEHIND it.

When I took it out, there where three 4" piles of ash, clogging the air flow around 1/2 of the base (tongs were just for scale).

I went ahead and put the new fire bowl in. It won't be white for long.

Ok back to food. The pork from both butts tasted very good. I think the Billy Bones had a better overall flavor but this time, I preferred the Southern Succor one because it had a peppery kick. I topped it with my pulled pork sauce and a little slaw. mmmmmm great eats.

If you're wondering what I am going to do with 8 1/2 pounds of pulled pork, we vacuum seal it and freeze it. Then any time we want pork BBQ during the week, we just reheat it in the bag in simmering water for a few minutes.