Author Topic: Boston Butt Question  (Read 2545 times)

Offline terry08

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Boston Butt Question
« on: September 18, 2010, 08:59:39 am »
First let me say that I have smoked hundreds of pounds of sausage in my smoke house. I have smoked many boston butts on my smaller cookers at temps of 225. My question is, that if I want to smoke say 10 boston butts in my smoke house, at temps. of say 170* Can I pump them up with a brine cure and go straight to smoke house or must they be cured for days. Not really looking for cured butts, just wanting to be safe during low temp. smoking. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Offline Wildcat

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2010, 09:29:32 am »
I can't help with curing, but I am sure many on here can. I personally would not smoke any lower than 190 box temp.
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Offline terry08

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2010, 09:59:32 am »
Guess what I am asking, is that when I smoke sausage I add  one teaspoon of cure for each five pounds of meat, and it goes straight to smoke house at low temps. If I had say a five  pound butt could I add one teaspoon of cure with water, pump it full and still be safe to smoke at low temps.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2010, 01:36:48 pm »
I would not smoke/cook it at 170°F without curing it. Beside you would have to leave that in their a long time for it to reach 170°F.

If you cure it you will have what they call buckboard bacon or Hillbilly bacon. If you want to use a dry cure, you will need to debone it and slice it so that no piece is thicker then 3 - 4 inches; it doesn't matter how long the pieces are:

Then you can follow a recipe like this: Hillbilly Bacon

If you are using cure #1, you measure the same way as you do with sausage; 1 teaspoon five pounds. But you will need to mix it with salt so that you can distribute it more evenly over the meat. The following is a link to a Morton Tender Quick substitute using cure #1.
Basic Dry Cure

If you want to cure it whole then you will have to use a wet brine; and prior to placing the meat in the brine you will need to inject it with brine that equals 10% of the green weight of the meat. A simple wet brine (pickle) would be:

Basic Pickling Brine
1 Gal. Water; divided
1 cup pickling salt (10 ounces)
1/2 cup sugar (you can go as high as 1 cup)
3 ounces Pink Salt (aka InstaCure #1, Prague Powder #1; Modern Cure #1; T.C.M.)

You can add additional flavors if you like. It would be similiar to curing a ham; such as the following link:
Smoke Cured Ham

Please note the curing times listed in each linked recipe.


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Offline terry08

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2010, 05:40:39 pm »
Thanks Habanero Smoker, You have answered my question. I will continue to do my Boston Butts in my electric smoker at cooking temps. It just won't hold but four at a time and I was looking to smoke ten or more. I am in Mississippi, and have an outlet named Rebel Butcher Supply, who has been in business for over sixty years. They told me exactly what you said, and I did not doubt them, just did not know if they understood what I was trying to accomplish. I purchase all supplies from them and have never doubted their expertise. Once again Thanks For The Info.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2010, 01:16:58 am »
Is there any way you can add additional heat inside your smoker; such as temporarily adding a hot plate or electric heater that will bring your smoker up to at least 200°F - 210°F.


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Offline terry08

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #6 on: September 19, 2010, 04:12:56 am »
I can bring it up as high as I need go. This is the same smoke house that Nepas, posted pictures of a long time ago. I built an exact replica of it, and have smoked many pounds of venison sausage and pork sausage in it. Just never tested it at temps above 170* for long periods of time.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2010, 01:30:34 pm »
I would wait for NePas to reply. I can't remember what materials your smoke house is made of.


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Offline terry08

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Re: Boston Butt Question
« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2010, 05:17:07 am »
It is 4 x 4 x 8 all wood walls with propane burner. I heated it up today and brought the temp. up to 250* for about an hour. Think I will just keep using it for sausage, jerky and now try some of the cured meats you folks show on here. The hillbilly bacon sounds good. Gonna give it a try.