Beef Shoulder or Clod


This beef shoulder turned out really good!  It was better than some prime rib that I have eaten.  It isn't often that I try something for the first time and it turns out this good. :)

While shopping at a local mart, I saw beef shoulders for $1.99/lb.  Remembering posts by members of the BBQ Porch list that this is a really good cut of meat when smoked properly,  I thought what the heck and decided to give it a try.  I bought a 6.8 pound cut.  Note: this is not a whole beef shoulder.  

Now how to smoke it?  I searched through my BBQ email archive and found a post about smoking beef shoulders by PigmanJim.  I generally followed the Pigman's instructions except I added a foil pan underneath the beef shoulder at the beginning of the cooking session.  After 4 hours, the beef shoulder is placed in the foil pan with all those good drippings and covered with foil.

Click on Cooking Record to see my brief notes about how my first beef shoulder was smoked.




#1)  One side of the beef shoulder.
#2)  The other side.  I'll call this side the fat cap side for the lack of a better name.  To call this side the fat cap side is a really loose use of the term "fat cap".  
#3)  The beef shoulder goes on the WSM.  Fat cap side up  The foil pan underneath the beef shoulder is there to catch the drippings.  The foil pan has about an 1/8 inch of water.



#4)  I took this pic just before putting the beef shoulder into the foil pan.  Note the accumulated drippings in the foil pan.
#5)  The shoulder rested for about 25 minutes before carving.  After this pic was taken,  I spooned out as much of the fat as possible from the juice.
#6)  Slices.


#7)  Remaining shoulder.  I'm already planning on thin slices piled high on sourdough bread with horseradish and some juice for dipping.
#8)  Snapped a quick pic using some of the leftovers to make open faced sandwiches on hoagie rolls.  Didn't get a pic of the sourdough sandwich but I assure you that it was very good.

Cooking Record
Time IT BG TG Lid Vent Comment
The top vent is always open 100%.
Full ring of charcoal with 4 chunks of oak.  Rubbed with Wild Willy.
 129* 3.5 hours.  Temperature measured at the lid of the WSM is cruising between 240* and 255*.
 136* At 4 hours, I placed the beef shoulder in the foil pan that was underneath the beef shoulder then tightly covered with heavy duty foil.  The fat cap side is up.  A Polder probe is inserted through the foil cover into the beef shoulder.
 170* The beef shoulder is removed from the WSM after about 2.5 hours of cooking in the covered foil pan.
The beef shoulder cooked for a total of 6.5 hours.  Then the beef shoulder rested for 25 minutes.

Rubs I've tried several different rubs.  I think the best was a simple rub with kosher salt, pepper and thyme.  The beef shoulder in the pix above was rubbed with Wild Willy.  I like Wild Willy rub but it just didn't work with the flavor of this cut of beef.
Internal Temp Plenty of room for people to experiment here.  To date, I have kept the final interal temp around 170* to 175* since the rest of the family won't eat rare beef.

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