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July 11, 2004
This little piggy...

... will be going straight down my gullet.

I lit the coals at about 9:30 this morning, gave the piggy (which brined overnight, of course) its rubdown and had it in the cooker by 10:30. Got home from church just after noon, and the temperature was still right on the money. All I had to do was add more wood chunks for smoke. Sitting there on the deck, smoking like Mount Saint Helens on vacation in Jamaica, it looks marvelous:


Cooking barbecue the natural way, with charcoal — the way it was meant to be cooked — isn't as hard as some people (e.g., those who swear by electric smokers) would have you believe.

It only takes a couple years of practice and anyone could do it, I suspect. But don't try it and then get all big-headed about it — my barbecue kung fu will always be better than yours.

Seriously. I will not tolerate dissent. Especially not from my brother.

Today's details:

  • The piggy: 1 (one) 6-pound Boston Butt roast. No, I don't know why a shoulder cut is called a "butt."
  • The brine: sugar, salt, bourbon, blackberry brandy, Cabernet Sauvignon vinegar, and one or two extras which shall remain nameless.
  • The rub: kosher salt, sugar, onion powder, various chili pepper powders, garlic powder, black pepper, and one or two other spices which shall remain nameless.
  • The water pan: water, bourbon, and blackberry brandy.
  • The heat source: natural wood chunk charcoal, of course. No briquets for this guy. Electricity? Feh... that's for amateurs.
  • The smoke source: damp chunks of hickory.
  • The work involved? At this point, all I have to do is periodically check that smoke is actually being generated, and once an hour check the temperature (and add charcol chunks, if necessary). Easy as pie.

It's not work, it's Art... and this is what you get:

work in progress

Eat your heart out, Steve.

Posted by Russ at 02:49 PM, July 11, 2004 in Barbecue

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Tracked on July 15, 2004 05:13 PM


It amazes me how you manage to run a blog with a charcoal-fired PC.

Posted by: Steve H. at July 11, 2004 02:53 PM

Something somewhere is burning (or has already burnt) to provide my electricity.

I'm amazed you haven't switched to a microwave oven for your barbecue, Steve.

Posted by: Russ at July 11, 2004 03:00 PM

But why are you cooking a pig from Boston unless it's John Kerry smoked in effigy? Maybe you should check out heirloom pig. twn left me the link.

Posted by: George Turner at July 11, 2004 04:20 PM

Still trying to talk the wife into letting me buy a smoker....

Posted by: Brian B at July 12, 2004 02:25 PM

Smokers aren't too pricey, or they don't have to be. And frankly, electric smokers are often cheaper than the charcoal variants.

Any barbecue is better than none at all.

Posted by: Russ at July 12, 2004 11:55 PM