Saturday, December 17, 2005

BBQ in Cold Weather

Friday night:

I just finished injecting and seasoning two 6 lb. pork butts a few minutes ago.

We've accumulated close to a foot of snow at my house over the course of the last week, but I think it's time to cook some bbq.

Thankfully, my insulated cooker should have no trouble holding heat in the 20 degree temperatures we've had here lately.

Saturday morning:

Here's the first update on the progress of our first snowy cook of the season.

I got started a little later than expected because I had difficulty finding a store that still had some charcoal left for sale. I had to go to three stores before I found charcoal. GFS had penty in stock. Apparently, charcoal isn't in high demand during wintertime in Michigan. I don't remember having a difficulty finding it last year, but non of the normal discount stores or grocery stores near me had any this weekend.

I know it's hard to see the thermometer reading in the picture above. My digital camera doesn't have a macro zoom on it for close-ups like this and the digital thermometer, which would be easier to see, only registers down to 32 degrees. It was 20 degrees as I started the fire for today's cooking at 10 a.m.

I just took a quick look out the window an the cooker temperature is now up to 180 degrees. It's time to put the water pan in the cooker and almost time to put the pork butts in.

Saturday afternoon:

The butts have been cooking for 4 1/2 hours and I just returned from wrapping them in aluminum foil. The outside temperature is at 23 degrees and there is a hint of sunshine, but it's still pretty cold out. When I pulled the butts out of the cooker their internal temperature as taken on my Maverick thermo reflected 162 and 164 degrees, respectively.

They were beginning to get some good bark formation and look pretty good.

After I wrapped them and stuck the thermo back in and put them back in the cooker, the internal temps on the meat had dropped down below 140 degrees. I guess I shouldn't be too surprised though. The outside temperature is 200 degrees less than the temperature in the cooker.

I'll post more pictures later and post an update on the progress.

Three cheers for insulated bbq cookers. There's little hope of cooking low-and-slow bbq in these kind of temperatures with my WSM, although I did it once last year. Click here to see a picture. Once the insulated smoker is up to cooking temperature, it holds steady in just about any weather. I really don't think it's much different in 20 degree weather than it would be in 80 degree weather.

Just set it and forget it.

No comments: