MMMM.. BRISKET..
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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 06-12-2004, 09:06 PM   #1
spanky
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Default pork picnic, boston butt is it a prefrence thing

I notice that almost everyone here are butt men, no arguement here. but i also noticed on tv some bbq places and competitors use the picnic shoulder. I havent done one yet but im going to try tomorrow, the way I see it, it will be good for pulled pork. Ok my lines of thinking are as follows: It will steam itself or hold in moisture with that big chunk of skin much the same reason you get a packer trimmed brisket. but on the other hand its pork and therefore fatty throughout, thus keeping it moist. Im just kind of ramblin I guess. Any thoughts would be of great help, why not a picnic? :?
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Old 06-12-2004, 09:17 PM   #2
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I won't do the quote thing here, but I have the exact same question as Spanky.
I was at Wally World tonight and they had the whole shoulder with the skin on the small end. Never saw any of these in the area before. just on TV. Looked beautiful. $1.18/lb. A lot more meat mass than a Boston Butt.
Good price?
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Old 06-12-2004, 09:31 PM   #3
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Got two Picnics(.59/lb) when I was suppose to get Boston Butts (sent the wrong person to the store). Could not get them to "pulled" state. BUTT very tasty sliced Q really nice pink color and great flavor.

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Old 06-12-2004, 10:06 PM   #4
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Picnics are different from butts. I think Picnics are more like a ham. Taste different and pull different. If im pulling, its just butts. Did a picnic twice.. didnt like the taste as much as just a butt.

Also heard/read that a butt is one half of the picnic and the other half is a ham... not sure which half is which or if this was correct... . but for me.. after them first 2.. i stick with just butts.
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Old 06-12-2004, 11:37 PM   #5
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Picnic (lower section)and butt (upper section) are both from the front shoulder of the pig, with the difference that the picnic has the bone in. The ham is the arse of the pig. As far as the difference in taste, picnics tend to cook fattier than the butt owing to the thick skin left on.
I have cooked both picnics and butts and tend to prefer butts but buy whatever is cheapest, (usually picnics go on sale).
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Old 06-13-2004, 07:42 AM   #6
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ok, so i was close..

they both come from a pig. At least i had the animal rightl :) i still like the butts better. IMO, the texture is different from the shoulder.
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Old 06-13-2004, 11:05 AM   #7
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My take is that they are two different pieces of meat both of which come from a pig and are actually close together (anatomical speaking- one is his shoulder and one is his arm(my wife didn't like this much info)). But the texture and tastes are very different. If you want sliced Q with a ham kind of kick get the picnic - if you want pulled pork get the butt.

R
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Old 06-13-2004, 01:45 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rusold
My take is that they are two different pieces of meat both of which come from a pig and are actually close together (anatomical speaking- one is his shoulder and one is his arm(my wife didn't like this much info)). But the texture and tastes are very different. If you want sliced Q with a ham kind of kick get the picnic - if you want pulled pork get the butt.

R
Well said R, I would add that there is a close comparison to brisket. Both considered outside Q circles to be inferior cuts. Packer would be like the whole shoulder, and the butt and picnic like the flat and point, Each part of the whole being quite different from the other.
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Old 06-13-2004, 02:21 PM   #9
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Default I agree!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQchef33
Picnics are different from butts. I think Picnics are more like a ham. Taste different and pull different. If im pulling, its just butts. Did a picnic twice.. didnt like the taste as much as just a butt.

Also heard/read that a butt is one half of the picnic and the other half is a ham... not sure which half is which or if this was correct... . but for me.. after them first 2.. i stick with just butts.
I agree. Even though these cuts both come from the same primal (the Shoulder) the butt comes from the top and the picnic comes from the bottom. In my limited experience with picnics, this piece was hard to get tender enough to pull and the taste and textre was more like ham. Not necessarily bad if that is what you are looking for, but it was different in taste and texture.

I prefer juicy butts! Tender meat that jiggles a little when you slap it...

Oh yeah...I like Boston Butts too!

P.S. Thanks Alton Brown for the Hog Anatomy lesson!

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Old 06-14-2004, 11:55 AM   #10
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I've cooked 'em both--It takes a little more time to find the muscle striations on the shoulder to pull it versus on a butt. However, if you smoke them both right, it'll be tender, juicy and tasty no matter what.
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Old 06-22-2004, 02:33 PM   #11
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I did a Boston Butt this past weekend on an Old Smokey with a ring of charcoal and a water pan in the center. It was carmalized on the outside but tender and juicy on the inside. After 8 hours of smoking on a mixture of Kingsford Charcoal and Applewood chunks, I wrapped it in Aluminum foil and let it rest for an hour. That Boston butt pulled apart with your fingers, it was that tender. Hell, my brother-in-law ate the carmalized/burnt parts and liked em!

I sauced the meet in three batches--one with a Mustard sauce (equal parts dill pickle juice and French's yellow mustard),one with Buffalo Wild Wings' caribbean jerk sauce and one with Stubb's spicy barbecue sauce. Suffice it to say, between my brother in law, my SFLF, his SFLF and our kids, there were no leftovers! I'm doing a picnic shoulder and some ribs this weekend after I season my modified, improved NB American Gourmet Smoker.

I made a heat shield from the FB into the CC and a conducting plate to even out the heat and direct the smoke across the CC. This is going to be great!!! I'll post some photos of my mods in another forum!!!
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Old 06-26-2004, 09:41 PM   #12
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I havn't been around the forum too much lately. Just learning this myself with the help of the Bretheren and a whole lot of trial and error. (mostly error) but my 2 cents worth. A couple of weeks ago I found a 6 pound Butt at Sam's Club and then while visiting K mart found a sale on Picnics. Figured what the heck. Put them both on my SKD. After 5 hours I foiled the butt and let the picnic go another 5. Foiled it and brought it up to 205* in a 250* oven. Then cooled both to 160* and pulled. Both pulled easily but the was a distinct difference in the flavor. Wifey preferred the butt, however I was content just to have pulled pork sammiches reguadless of the source. Doin a 12 pound butt tommorrow and going to try a few fatties for the first time.
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Old 06-28-2004, 05:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mfalle
I havn't been around the forum too much lately. Just learning this myself with the help of the Bretheren and a whole lot of trial and error. (mostly error) but my 2 cents worth. A couple of weeks ago I found a 6 pound Butt at Sam's Club and then while visiting K mart found a sale on Picnics. Figured what the heck. Put them both on my SKD. After 5 hours I foiled the butt and let the picnic go another 5. Foiled it and brought it up to 205* in a 250* oven. Then cooled both to 160* and pulled. Both pulled easily but the was a distinct difference in the flavor. Wifey preferred the butt, however I was content just to have pulled pork sammiches reguadless of the source. Doin a 12 pound butt tommorrow and going to try a few fatties for the first time.
Why did the picnic need 5 more hours than the butt?
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