Weather Anomalies

Saturday the bottom fell out of the weather here in south Texas. It’s April and the temperature on Saturday night was in the low 30s. That ain’t right. Global warming? Hah! I laugh at your global warming. Anyhow, what was I doing in rainy 30-degree weather? Why, standing outside smoking meat, of course!

For Easter, the decision was made to have ribs and a turducken. Originally, we were going to have a couple of chickens, but then I suddenly remembered someone had presented me a gift certificate for a meat store here in town. So we dropped by and the only thing that looked good was a 10 pound turducken. So we picked that up Friday and went about our merry way. Plans were made to cook Saturday and reheat for Sunday.

Saturday dawned slightly cool, and just got worse. Because of my general sloth, I didn’t get started until 1ish. I’m busily trying to maintain a reasonable smoking temperature all day, while Dog v2.0 tries to assist, supervise, and generally get in the way. Somewhere about 8 o’clock, when the temperature really got nasty, D2 gave up and stayed inside. The turducken took right at about 8 hours to smoke to an internal temp of 165F, so I was finishing up at 9:30 or so. By that time, D2’s sitting inside watching me in the rain through the glass. When the little Scottish dog decides it’s too cold and wet outside, I know the weather is ugly. You can take the dog out of Scotland, but you can’t take the Scotland out of the dog. Every single Westie I have ever known loves it when the weather is cold and damp, despite the fact that all the Westies I know are born and raised on the Texas Gulf Coast. We don’t do cold and damp much around here, but when we do, Dog v2.0 wants to be outside in it.

For the turducken, I just thawed it and smoked it. It came preseasoned and stuffed, so I figured I would try the item as presented and see how it was. The ribs were done in the usual YPS style, to wit rubbed with the following spice mixture:

4 TB Sweet Paprika
1-2 TB Chipotle Powder
2 TB Ground Cumin
2 TB Dark Brown Sugar
2 TB Salt
1 TB Dried Oregano
1 TB Garlic Powder
1 TB Sugar
1 TB Ground Black Pepper
1 TB Ground White Pepper
1/2 - 1 1/2 tsp Ancho Chili Powder

This time around we put the chili powders on the low end of the scale. Smoking wood was hickory, because that’s the first bag I grabbed. The ribs were nice and tender Saturday night, but didn’t come off so well on Sunday. They toughened up a little. Of course, it may be that the baby backs didn’t have that problem. I smoked three racks of baby backs and one rack of spare ribs. I don’t usually screw with baby backs, because they’re too freaking small. If I’m going to spend my time smoking things, I want some damn meat at the end. So I left the baby backs to other people and ate spare ribs and turducken. I can highly recommend both.