While pork is one of the hardest meats to barbecue, if it is done right, you will be left with mouth-watering, succulent pork chops. It is said that if you learn how to grill pork to perfection you can grill anything, in the comfort of your own backyard.
Listed below are some tips to keep in mind while barbecuing pork:
1. Patience Is Key
As it has been said countless times before, when it comes to barbecuing pork, you must be patient. It is a long, slow process and will probably take up your whole day. Just relax, take your time and have fun with it.
2. The Right Meat
Many barbecue novices make the mistake of buying thin cuts of meat in order to minimize cooking time. Make sure to opt for thicker cuts, they are easier to grill and taste much better. The best choice would be a cut with thin streaks of fat, called marbling, across its surface. This fat will melt while grilling and make the inside moist and juicy.
3. Time to Brine
Even if you have found the perfect cut of pork, brining is a must. Soaking the meat in a weak salt and sugar solution adds moisture to it. A standard brining solution can be made by mixing 60 ml of salt and sugar in 1L of water. For added taste, boil the water with rosemary, thyme or any other aromatic herb of your choice. There is no need to salt the meat if you have brined it.
4. Using Wood to Barbecue
All BBQ experts know the importance of smoking pork with wood. Apple, hickory, oak or cherry are the ideal types of wood to use while smoking pork. Mesquite and sap woods like pine should be avoided as they would overpower the taste of the meat and are slightly toxic. Place the wood on the hot coals when you place the pork on the grill. Allow it to cook slowly at a low temperature. This ensures that the rich and smoky flavor of the wood is brought out.
5. No Peeking!
It can be very tempting to lift the lid while barbecuing and check if the meat is cooking the way you want it. However, each time you lift the lid, you are increasing cooking time significantly. While the lid is on, the meat is being cooked from above and below. The minute you lift the lid, heat escapes and the meat are cooked only from the bottom. As you are cooking over an indirect flame, there is no need to flip your meat. So, just stay away from the grill while it’s cooking.
6. It’s a Wrap
Now that you have your perfectly cooked, tender pork ready, it is time for the finishing touches. Though barbecued pork by itself, can be great, adding sauce will only enhance the taste. Glaze your pork with barbecue sauce and smoke for about twenty more minutes. This will ensure that the sauce bakes into the meat. And there you have it, your pork is ready to be served. While you may not get it perfectly right the first time, after some trial and error you are sure to find your ideal barbecue method. So put on your apron and happy grilling!
For some more instructions on how you can get that barbecue perfect, here’s a great video by Smokes A Rollin.