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Grilling is cooking over hot coals. Barbecuing is cooking over indirect coals at low heat for a long time, usually with aromatic smoke added. It's the "crock pot" of charcoal cooking. I use an "El Cheapo Brinkman" smoker and get fantastic results. It's called "el Cheapo" because they only cost about $50. It will cook just as well as one costing thousands, it just won't impress your friends as much, if you're in to that sort of thing. The rub is from "How to Cook Meat" The cooking time includes 48 hours brining time.
- 3 quarts brine, solution (#11266 from Di Neal is great)
- 1 whole boston butt (you don't need anything "better")
- 1⁄4 cup sugar
- 1⁄4 cup paprika
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 2 tablespoons black peppercorns
- 2 tablespoons cumin seeds
- 2 tablespoons new mexico chile powder, whole ((I've used Ancho, Smoked Chipotle, and Tex-Mex, they're all good)
- 3⁄4 cup white vinegar
- 3 -4 tablespoons hot sauce (Cholula or Tapatio)
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- kosher salt
- fresh ground black pepper
- Prepare the brine solution and let it cool.
- Trim any surface fat from the roast.
- Place the roast in a large zip-lock bag and add the brine.
- Seal the bag and place it in a bowl to catch any drips.
- Refrigerate at least 24 hours, 48 hours is mo better.
- Turn the bag every 6 hours.
- After 48 hours prepare the rub.
- Grind the cumin seeds, chili powder, and peppercorns in a spice mill.
- Mix the cumin, pepper, sugar, paprika, salt, and chili powder in a medium bowl.
- Now you have a choice.
- Barbecue it or cheat and cook it in an oven or a crock pot.
- Whichever you decide preheat to 225°F.
- Remove the roast and discard the brine.
- Thoroughly dry the roast with paper towels.
- It's called a rub, so rub it hard and well, work it into the meat.
- When it is completely covered, if there is any rub left rub that into the roast 'til the spices are all used.
- Place the roast on the top rack of the smoker and place presoaked hardwood (Alder, Apple, Cherry, Hickory, Mesquite or whatever turns you on) on the coals.
- Talk with friends and sip a nice ale as you check the cooker temperature.
- Adding charcoal and fresh wood to maintain 225°F (Go easy on the wood. It's far better to under smoke and end with a delicate flavor than achieve a flavor too strong to be enjoyed).
- Cook for 10-12 hours.
- If you choose to cheat, place the roast in a crock pot,set on low and cook for 10-12 hours.
- If you opt for the oven, place the roast in a pan and roast it for 10-12 hours.
- Note; If you choose to use the smoker the juices will drop into the water basin. If you use a crock pot or oven you will have to drain the juices fairly regularly. I heated the nozzle of my nylon turkey baster and squeezed it to make the hole flatter and smaller, the thin juices don't dribble out so easily.
- Each works well but with the charcoal cooker you get smoked meat and the fun of being forced to sit around with friends drinking ale and watching the coals. The cooking of food should be as much fun as the eating of it.
- When done let it cool to handling temperature.
- Cut, chop, or shred the meat into bite sized servings.
- Mix the vinegar, hot sauce, and sugar.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Toss vinegar mix with the meat.
- Reheat and serve. Great with a garden salad and a baguette to soak up the juice.