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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Old 03-27-2014, 09:30 AM   #1
SuburbSlicker
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Default Crunchy bits in pulled/chopped pork

Good morning all, seeking your ideas.

In Goldsboro, NC, there is a bbq restaurant which cooks whole hog and makes some of the best chopped pork I've ever eaten - Wilber's BBQ. If Eastern NC-style isn't your thing, then you might as well go ahead and stop here. But if you're still around, Wilber's uses tiny bits of crunchy skin mixed into their pork. It adds something amazing. Almost like bacon bits.

Without cooking a whole hog, does anyone have any ideas on how to replicate that flavor/crunch just using butt/shoulder? I've considered actually using bacon, or maybe pork rinds from 7-11, but I'm thinking someone here might have some ideas that I haven't considered.

Thanks!
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:37 AM   #2
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You might see if your butcher has pork skin. The Mexican grocery stores carry it here. Would be easy to smoke along side of your shoulders and butts.
Good luck with what ever you use!
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:50 AM   #3
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The best crackling I find is off belly pork so if you can get some of that skin You'll be good to go. Generally it makes the best crunch if it's super dry before cooking - some people use hair dryers on it - and cooked at quite a high temperature but make sure you watch it like a hawk as it's easy to burn. I guess they just chop it up and mix it in?
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Old 03-27-2014, 09:56 AM   #4
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buy a picnic or whole pork shoulder and cook it with skin.

Preperation - Slather with oil or mayo and heavily coat kosher salt on it. Put it in the fridge overnight to allow the salt to pull moisture out of the skin. Reapply some kosher salt to it and throw it on the smoker.

Cooking - I would cook at 300-325 degrees to ensure a nice crispy skin. Cook until nice and tender. Spritz with apple cider vinegar every once in a while.

Once done and rested - remove the bone from the picnic, put the meat on the cutting board and wield cleavers in each hand and start chopping skin, fat and meat together. Add in some eastern carolina dip to add a little bit of vinegar/pepper flavor to the chopped pork.
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Old 03-27-2014, 10:19 AM   #5
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Wilburs is mighty fine!!! Been a while since my last visit, gotta make some time
in the near future for a road trip to see family and to drop in....Love, Love, Love their hushpuppies and white dipping sauce also!!!
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Old 03-27-2014, 10:25 AM   #6
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Oh here is the eastern carolina dip that I use as a finishing sauce on all my pulled pork.

2 cups apple cider vinegar
1/8-1/4 cup crushed red pepper flakes
2 tablespoon salt
3 tablespoon turbinado sugar


That will make quite a bit. when I add it to pulled pork, i taste it and once I get the hint of vinegar flavor I stop adding it in. That recipe will be enough for 3-4 8lb pork butts. So i would guess about 2 whole pork shoulders.
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Old 03-27-2014, 10:57 AM   #7
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Cook picnics and use only salt for the rub
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Old 03-27-2014, 11:39 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bludawg View Post
Cook picnics and use only salt for the rub
Kosher salt or table salt? I just use K salt for rubs, but I haven't thought about using table salt in a while and sometimes wonder if I'm missing out on something. Also how heavy an application are you talking?
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Old 03-27-2014, 11:40 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aawa View Post
buy a picnic or whole pork shoulder and cook it with skin.

Preperation - Slather with oil or mayo and heavily coat kosher salt on it. Put it in the fridge overnight to allow the salt to pull moisture out of the skin. Reapply some kosher salt to it and throw it on the smoker.

Cooking - I would cook at 300-325 degrees to ensure a nice crispy skin. Cook until nice and tender. Spritz with apple cider vinegar every once in a while.

Once done and rested - remove the bone from the picnic, put the meat on the cutting board and wield cleavers in each hand and start chopping skin, fat and meat together. Add in some eastern carolina dip to add a little bit of vinegar/pepper flavor to the chopped pork.
YES! This type of method also works well when slow smoking chicken to give you crispy bite through skin! Also, I do usually see picnics with skin on in my local store for a pretty good price!
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Old 03-27-2014, 12:08 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtr View Post
Kosher salt or table salt? I just use K salt for rubs, but I haven't thought about using table salt in a while and sometimes wonder if I'm missing out on something. Also how heavy an application are you talking?
When I do it picnics or eastern carolina style I really layer on the kosher salt pretty thick on it. Several handfuls on the skin. You will think that it is will be too salty, but once you chop up the skin and meat it will balance out really nicely. now if you just take a piece of skin off after it is cooked it will be saltier than the dead sea.
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