Give Dad a Break – Boston Butt in the Oven

Do you want to give your dad a break from all the grilling for Father’s Day? Still want to have barbecue, though? Now you can do both! Everyone knows the best and most important part of throwing a barbecue is, well, the barbecue! This easy to follow and delicious recipe will allow you to make that great-tasting pulled pork without the hassle of the grill. Just like any good barbecue, though, time is your friend. Be sure to allow plenty of time for cooking (it would be a good idea to begin at least a day before your party).  To start this whole process off, you will need:

  • whole boston butt (the beginning of every good barbecue)
  • very large ziploc bag (big enough to hold your meat)
  • 3 in deep roasting pan (or bigger)
  • meat thermometer (you can go really fancy and get the digital kind, but if you only have the stick-it-in-and-watch-the-dial-move kind, then that’s OK too)

We could go on for days about why brining is important, but we’ve already done that, so because this piece of meat is probably bigger than most small babies and cooks probably longer than catching up on your House recordings, you’ll want to brine this thing.  The second most important step for meat to have flavor is some seasoning.  Here, we create a dry run that works on beef and pork, so if you make extra, feel free to try it on other stuff too.  It will keep for 1-3 months in an airtight container.  OK, let’s get started.

The Rub:

  • 1 tbsp cayenne pepper (it will balance out and not be too hot)
  • 1 tbsp chili powder
  • 1 tbsp garlic powder
  • 1 tbsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbsp ground pepper
  • 1 tbsp onion powder
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 1 tbsp kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • Mix all ingredients together

The Brine:

  • 1/2 cup salt
  • 6 cups cold water (or enough to cover meat)
  • 2 cups apple juice
  • 1/2 brown sugar
  • 5 tbs dry rub
  • Mix salt, cold water, and apple juice in large ziploc bag until dissolved.  Add brown sugar and 5 tbs of dry rub. Stir.  Rinse meat, add to bag and make sure completely covered with brine solution.  Refrigerate at least 8 hours or over night.

After meat has brined for at least 8 hours, remove from fridge.  Remove meat from bag and place in roasting pan.  Pat dry with paper towels.  Rub meat liberally with remaining rub mixture all over until completely covered.  Turn meat fatty side up and let rest for about 45 more minutes.  (You don’t want your meat to be cold when placing into the oven.)  Preheat oven to 225 degrees.  Cook meat in middle of oven on middle oven rack for approximately 10 hours depending on size of the boston butt.  (Appx 1 1/2 hrs per pound).  No need to start checking temp until around 8 hours if you have one of the manual poke-’em thermometers.  When internal temp has reached 185-200 degrees, remove from oven, loosely cover with foil at least 1 hour before carving top layer of fat off and pulling meat apart.  Serve with any one of LowCountry’s barbecue sauces.  Enjoy!

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