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December 03, 2004



Let me just say, if I want to rub a boneless Boston butt with sugar, I can just head down to Manray any night...

No, really, that was bad. I apologize. Thank you for the recipe!

ben wolfson

Won't be boneless for long.

Kip Manley

I'm afraid this thread is doomed to Beavis-and-Buttheadery; I also have a sneaking suspicion that this outcome was not unanticipated.

(It just so happens that over the weekend while we were waiting for eggs and potatoes at Junior's a friend of mine launched a giggle-worthy digression about the relative merits of pulled, jerked, and dry-rubbed pork, which led me to remember Joshua Micah Marshall's recent out-of-character snark about Rep. Istook giving the Northeastern Republicans a "solid pork shafting" over the Amtrak thing.)


FYI, this would count as (east) North Carolina BBQ, too - it's that pulled pork and thin vinegar sauce combo.

for an exciting upstate NY spin: serve on a Kimmelwick/Kummelweck roll (a crusty roll covered with coarse salt and caraway seeds). see PJ's BBQ in Saratoga Springs, NY for example.

damn, i love me some Carolina BBQ.


Not so very long ago, a friend and I drove all over Columbia, SC, for about an hour-and-a-half, looking for a BBQ place run by a man named Green. Unlike the places (Piggy Park?) run by that other, confederage-flag-flying white dude, Green's wasn't exactly advertising itself. We didn't quite descend to, "Black people! Pull over, let's ask them!" but only in that neither one of us actually spoke those words.

Eventually, we gave up, and about 15 seconds later, saw smoke rising from a non-descript place on the right, and it was Green's. Totally, totally worth it.

Russell Arben Fox

I've actually heard of Green's, Ogged, and all that I've heard is good. I envy you. Though, to be honest, while I admit the superiority of Carolina-style pulled pork, it's not something I especially crave. Pulled pork with slaw and beans is good solid food, sure, but no BBQ beats a well cooked side of ribs with burnt ends. And for that, you need to go Memphis and Kansas City-style. My friend Nick explains.

Mitch Mills

Ooh ooh! I feel a big ol' "What IS Barbecue" fight brewing!!!1!!

I hope fafnir weighs in, I miss the great pie fights of yore!


Or perhaps fafnir is merely a student in the New-Englandish (Providence-based) pie-tradition, and without roots or expertise in the ancient tradition of Southern BBQ'ing?


Well, I don't know how much of a pork-eating family yours is, but, in this season, it is very important to leave room for New Year. If you didn't know, on New Year's day, it is very important to eat a little bit of pork, along with collards--or mustards if you prefer--as well as black-eyed peas. If you do not do this, you are not maximizing your family's chances of prosperity in the coming year. I'm just saying so.


The operative words here are "Roomy" and "indirect". My grill isn't 55 gallons...I can't go that slow, so I cover my butt after about 4 hours with foil so I don't end up with a cinder.

ben wolfson

Kevin Swilson (a tech writer at a university somewhere in Idaho) swears by one of those egg-shaped grill things, which produces such as this.

belle waring

spacetoast: I prefer pidgeon peas, but they're hard to get. some people think that's how "hopping john" got its name: pois pidgeon...see what I'm saying? naturally black-eyed peas are dandy.

Russell L. Carter

Can't you get something besides a weber? Or do they have a world wide monopoly. I'm with Steingarten on this. And you don't need 10-15 hours, you can get by with 6 or so if the heat is truly indirect and you've got a steady source of moisture.

There are two kinds of distinctive Carolina bbq sauce (at least). The recipe you provide is the more "normal" kind; I'm rather partial to genuine East Carolina style sauce which is basically a mustard/vinegar base with very tiny permutations. Although, if the recipe is going to have a tomato base I'm with you totally on the molasses (dark) and garlic. And this reminds me of Flip's BBQ in Wilmington NC. I've eaten at least a hundred of their pulled pork sandwiches with the coleslaw on top, yummy.

But in the end, there's no BBQ war. It's all good. 'cept for those damnable places in Texas that frown on sauce when they serve up the most exquisite brisket.

Some might recall that about ten years ago Cooks Illustrated had a funny article in the magazine, not the book (in the book, the funny part is removed) where the author went through the usual Cooks Illustrated MO of several billion variations on whole BBQ brisket and then took the results to the panel of judges, which he recruited from the local (St. Louis) homeless shelter. I use the winning recipe now, it's garanteeyahed to provide tender tasty brisket in an afternoon's time. Though I don't bother with the oven part, I've got one of those 55g drum thingys with the firebox hanging off the side that seals nicely, for the oven effect.


Classic S.C.-style barbecue sauce is much more mustardy than this, though this mix does sound good.


Huh. I did not see what you were saying, because I didn't think I knew what such a thing as pigeon peas were. Googling it, I think I have had pigeon peas, but it was in a Puerto Rican style jambalaya...meaning, to me, specifically, with heavy garlic. I don't remember what the peas specifically were like, though. Could one eat pigeon peas with chow-chow like with black-eyed peas? Anyway, it's an very interesting etymology.


readers outside the US English region, take care; I asked my butcher if he had a "boneless Boston butt" and now I think I'm married to him.

Another Damned Medievalist

Belle -- are you grilling or smoking? I am so confused.


Help!! Forgive me, but I am from Michigan, and just found out that my FAVORITE bbq sandwich, served at US 31 Barbeque in Muskegon, MI, is actually a North Carolina bbq sandwich. There, is is the cole slaw on the meat that makes the sandwich. It is fine ground cabbage, with tastes of vinegar and mustard.
Where can I get a recipe for this? Can you even tell me if it is close to the east vs west versions of this sandwich. Unfortunately, I cannot get any info from them, and I have moved to Arizona and cannot get anything like it! Maybe you can sneak some info from them, and I would be eternally grateful!!!
Thank you. Sandy


Horseradish Sauce Recipe:
Ingredients: sour cream, grated onion, prepared horseradish, salt... view the recipe


I'm confused, too. I don't think you could make Carolina pulled pork on a gas grill. Even at the lowest setting, after 14 hours you'd have nothing but ashes left. And yes, you really do need 14 hours for the full smoky effect.

The confusion is that pulled pork isn't actually cooked with heat. It is processed by the chemical action of the smoke in a way that has a similar effect to cooking it without heating it to normal cooking temperatures. That's why it stays so tender--it never really gets above maybe 120-130 degrees fahrenheit or so. It's also why it takes so long.

That recipe looks about right, although it neglects to mention that you need to keep putting hickory chips on the charcoal (which should be natural hardwood "lump" charcoal, NOT briquettes). If you don't put some actual wood on the coals, where is your smoke going to come from?

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