Sometimes its not about what you cook, its about how and where and with what challenges.  Well today, much like cooking breakfast on an open fire, the challenge was not in what I was cooking or how I was cooking, it was the element of nature that produced the biggest source of problem in my cook.  In the midst of a blizzard warning this morning I fired up the smoker to smoke up some rosemary and brown sugar rubbed Boston butts (3) for some pulled pork.

Smoking in a blizzard

In spite of the snow and the massive drifts and the sometimes strong winds, I prevailed the smoked stayed going and the pork is now ready for some pulling.  Its not new, its not special but it was a challenge.  And if I do say the results look, smell and taste fantastic.

My apologies for the picture quality, they came from my phone. 🙁

Tagged with: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Ribs, Again!  This time with more style.  Last time I used two rubs out of a bottle and had good ribs come up but the rubs was not complimentary.  The ribs were good but they were not as good as they should have been.  This time, I managed a little more success.

Ribs with Garlic and Rosemary Mashed Potatoes

Last night I whipped up perhaps my favorite pulled pork rub, a brown sugar and rosemary rub, using some fresh rosemary, from the plant to the rub, it doesn’t get much fresher than that.  From there I lightly rubbed the ribs with Dijon mustard and then the rub and then it was into the fridge to rest overnight in bask in that magnificent rub.

Then in the morning it was onto the smoker with some apple wood and some hickory at 225°F for 3 hours, I did spritz the ribs a couple of times as the skin dried out with apple juice during this time.  Then it was into a double layer of foil for 2 hours, then back onto the grate in the smoke with no foil until they reached 172°F in the thickest part of the rib.  I brushed them lightly with BBQ sauce during this time as well.  Then it was off the smoker and back into some foil, a wrapped in a couple towels and then into a cooler for about 30 minutes of rest to allow the juices to redistribute and the flavor to mature.

Then it was time to eat them.  They were better than the last rack of ribs I smoked, either half of them.  They were sweet and had a nice bark on them were fall off the bone tender.  The rosemary complimented the sweet and the delicate flavor of the pork ribs, they were perhaps the best ribs I have ever had.

With one exception it looks like I have found my rib recipe for at least the immediate future.  My wife smelled the cumin in the rub when I was making it and she was able to taste a hint of it in the finished product, she wanted less cumin next time.  I thought all was well the way it was.

Either way they were great, an appropriate use of such a fine piece of meat and they went well with some garlic and rosemary mashed red skin potatoes.

Tagged with: , , , , , , ,

This past Saturday was a great day for a smoke, an all day smoke.  We were stripping and polishing up the boat, so why not do it with the tantalizing smell of hickory smoke and cooking meat. That is just what we did.  This was a great smoke because while I enjoy pulled pork bbq, its not one of those things that is like wow, but I made it wow, at least wow to me.  It all started with a good rub, a brown sugar and rosemary rub that gave it great bark and great flavor.

I again used my Slap Chop to chop up the fresh rosemary and speed up that job of making the rub, which like most rubs is not labor intensive. I then mixed the rub thoroughly as I could with a fork, crushing up clumps as they formed.

Rosemary and brown sugar pork rub

Once the rub was ready I slathered my bone-in pork loin with dijon mustard and then rubbed evenly, making sure to get all the surfaces with the rub.

After that is was onto my charcoal Brinkmann Gourmet for a long days cook at anywhere from 225°F to 250°F.  Usually I aim for a more precise temperature but with the wind (15-25 MPH all day) and the Gourmet‘s lack of control this was difficult to do.  Even with the wind and temperature my 5.25 lb loin hit 205°F after about 11 hours, none to soon by our clock, we were hungry.  We let the meat rest for about an hour and then pulled it using a pair of forks.

And then we ate it on a bun with some coleslaw and bbq sauce, the meat on its own was really good especially when you got a good chunk of the bark where you could really taste the rub.  Rosemary and pork go together better than cake and ice cream.  That was yesterday.  Today it made it to its pinnacle, I put some pork and Famous Dave’s bbq sauce in the crock pot this morning and came back a couple of hours later to find, an incredible pot of pulled pork bbq, so again I piled it high on a hoagie bun with some coleslaw and it was awesome.  I later found out this is even better with homemade bbq sauce .

A pulled pork bbq sandwich

After all of that I kinda find myself excited about pulled pork bbq and can’t wait to make it again.  If you want the recipe for the rub I used, a brown sugar and rosemary rub, I have included it below.  In the future I will probably use this rub on some regular smoked or grilled pork as it compliments the pork so well.

Brown Sugar and Rosemary Rub
2 tbsp finely chopped fresh rosemary
1/4 c dark brown sugar
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp onion powder
1 tsp cumin
2 tsp kosher salt
1/2 tsp cayenne
1/2 tsp ground black pepper

Combine all ingredients in a bowl and mix well.  Prepare meat by washing, drying and evenly coating in dijon mustard.  Rub meat evenly covering every inch with rub.  Grill or smoke low and slow until desired doneness.

Tagged with: , , , , , , , ,