Smoked Pulled-Pork Sandwiches
Maintaining low smoker and oven temperatures is the key to achieving the most tender and moist smoked pork. When the pork has reached 180 degrees, all the fat should be rendered, and the meat should pull apart easily. You can cook the entire time in the smoker, but the smoked flavor will be very strong. If you do not have a smoker, use our oven method in the note below.
Prepare grill as a smoker (gas grills require attachments, which are available for most models through the maufacturer): Add a layer of fragrant wood chips over the coals; the chips must be presoaked so they smolder and don't burn. Then close the grill's lid to create a hot, smoking environment in which the meat is infused with smoke flavor as it cooks. A pan of water placed on the grill rack creates steam to keep the meat moist as it smokes. Bring temperature in smoker to between 200 degreesÂ and 210 degrees.Â Keep the smoker at this temperature throughout the cooking process. This is managed by opening and closing the vents as necessary.
Cut 4 lengths of kitchen twine long enough to fit around the pork. Securely tie 2 lengths of twine evenly spaced lengthwise and 2 evenly spaced crosswise. Generously sprinkle meat with salt and pepper.
Place pork on grill, fat side down, and cook for 1 hour. Generously brush with barbecue sauce on all exposed sides. Continue to smoke, brushing with sauce every hour, for 3 hours more. Preheat oven to 275 degrees.
Transfer pork to a shallow roasting pan fitted with a wire rack, and place in the oven. Cook, basting every hour, until an instant-read thermometer registers 180 degrees, about 3 hours.
Once pork is cool enough to handle, cut the kitchen twine. Using your fingers, pull meat apart, and place on a cutting board. Chop the meat coarsely into 1-inch pieces. Transfer to a large bowl, and toss with 1 1/2 cups barbecue sauce. Divide the pork among 12 cornmeal buns, and serve the remaining barbecue sauce on the side. The pork can be smoked 1 to 2 days in advance. When ready to serve, warm meat in an oven heated toÂ 300 degrees, toss with sauce, and proceed with the recipe.