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Fruit of the Loin

A half price sale on a pork loin, the King Pig UDS, some applewood smoke and the NFL Playoffs.  Calling today a good day would be an understatement.

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Since the full loin was over 9 lbs, I decided to break it down into some 1.5″ thick boneless chops for later this week, and a 5 lb chunk that would go on the smoker.  As a part of this day of smoke, I am making a Brunswick stew for tomorrow’s Packer game against the Giants.  Part of this smoked loin will end up in there and part will be used for sandwiches to be enjoyed during today’s playoff games.

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The loin that was headed to the smoker was first rubbed down with some yellow mustard.  For those of you who are not familiar with BBQ’ing, mustard is used quite often as a binding agent for dry rub on meat.  Don’t worry, you won’t taste it after the meat has been cooked.  Be sure to wear food safe gloves when working with mustard if you are bothered by jaundice-looking hands.

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Once the mustard was rubbed on, the dry rub was liberally shaken on by my 5 year old sous chef.  For this cook I decided to try the Plowboys BBQ Bovine Bold rub.  I really like their Yardbird rub on Pork Butt’s, so I figured I would give this a try.  It turned out to be another great rub.

The King Pig Ugly Drum Smoker (UDS) was fired up with some Royal Oak Lump charcoal and a couple of chunks of apple wood.   It was a 19 degree day with calm winds.  Notice the snow that we finally got this winter.

The UDS was brought up to 275 degrees and the loin was put on.  Based on what  I had read, most people cook the loin between 250 and 275 degrees for around 30 minutes per pound.  I planned to cook the pork to about 140 degrees and let it come up to 145 degree safe point by resting it in aluminum foil.

Once the loin hit 140 degrees, it was pulled off the smoker and foil wrapped.  I put it in the oven (which was turned off) for about an hour to rest.  I poured a small amount of apple juice into the foil for some moisture.  As you can see, the loin stayed very moist.  The foil was full of juices and this was one of the most moist pieces of pork we have had.

A nice thick cut of the pork loin with some Sweet Baby Ray’s on a Manderfield’s (local bakery) bun and you have a meal fit for a queen (and I thought it was great too.)  Based on how fast this cooked (2.5 hours), how great it tasted, and how healthy this cut of meat is, this will be definitely something that I do again.

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