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**The Sauce Blog**
November 16th, 2018, 1:37 pm
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I use non-sliced, butt portion, per-cooked and ready to eat, bone in hams for this recipe. You may have to search your local meat sources to find this type of ham, as most only carry spiral sliced hams. I have done this with spiral sliced ham in the past, but the end result is nothing like I wanted, so I don't suggest using spiral sliced hams for this recipe, Also, do not use a boneless "formed" ham for this recipe.

I only use BBQR's Delight pecan and cherry pellets, mixed together in a 50/50 ratio.

The hams were 10 pounds each.

Because the ham has a flat cut end, it needs to be protected during the cooking process, so that the ham doesn't loose too much moisture and dry out. I almost always use a cooking grate when I cook. This allows me to load the grate up with what I am cooking, and carry the loaded grate to the cooker, open the lid, place the loaded grate in the cooker, and close the lid. To protect the flat cut end of the ham, I used heavy duty aluminum foil on the grate, and placed the hams on the foil. This cook is all about protecting the flat cut end of the ham, while getting smoke on the outside of the ham, and getting it tender enough to pull it apart. To help with this, I also use 2 foldable cookie racks on the lower grate, to elevate the cooking rack with the hams about 2" above the lower grate of the cooker. Remember the Yoder Smokers cooker cook from the bottom up, so providing an air gap between the lower grate and the cooking grate helps with protecting the flat cut end of the ham. This air gap is not normally needed when cooking, but because the ham is pre-cooked and has an open flat cut end exposing the meat, the air gap is a benefit for this recipe.

I cooked this recipe on an Yoder Smokers YS640, but any Yoder Smokers cooker should provide the same results. I followed the recommended startup procedure to get the cooker going: download/Best%20Practice%20and%20how%20to/Recommend%20procedure%20for%20starting%20up%20a%20Yoder%20pellet%20cooker.pdf

After putting foil over the cooking grate, I placed the hams on top of the foil, flat cut end down, and used a sharp knife to cut scores about an inch apart around the hams. These cuts are only about 1/4" deep, and allow the smoke, and later the sauce, more access to the meat. Once the cooker had stabilized at the default startup temperature of 350 (about 30 minutes after pressing the START button), I changed the controller to a cooking temperature of 250. I then opened the lid of the cooker, and placed the 2 elevated cookie racks on the lower grates, and put the cooking grate on top of the elevated cooking racks making sure that the hams were centered left to right and front to back, and closed the lid, filled the pellet hopper and walked away.

To answer a few questions I am sure that will come up:

- I am not concerned at all about the 350 temperature in the cooker, as opening the lid and putting a large volume of 40 degree meat in the cooker will bring the temperature down quickly, and the few minutes at a higher cooking temperature will have no effect on the meat over a 12+ hour cook.
- With this setup, the cooker set to a cooking temperature of 250, a 2" air gap between the cooker's lower grate and the foil barrier on the elevated cooking grate, and a foil barrier under the meat, will produce an effective cooking temperature of approximately 225 degrees.
- I did not use any seasoning on the meat, as the meat is pre-cooked, and the end result is to allow the ham to be flavored with the foiling sauce.

Right after putting the elevated cookie racks and the loaded cooking rack in the YS640

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The hams are not quite right for wrapping yet. This was 7 hours into the cook.
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When I felt the hams were the right color and the crust was what I wanted, at about 9 hours after putting the meat in the cooker, it is time to wrap. I normally don't go by temperature, but for those that do, the internal temperature was approximately 160 degrees. Never, never go by a recipe cooking time, as there are too many variables that will be different and affect the cooking time. Cooking time is a not a hard fact, it is a respectful suggestion.

This is the sauce that I used. Feel free to use whatever sauce that you like.
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I used 2 layers of 24" wide heavy duty aluminum foil to wrap the hams (be aware of the bone in the ham so that it doesn't poke a hole in the foil). If you have 18" foil, you will need to make sure that the foil is sealed well enough to keep in all of the juice that is about to happen. I used 20 ounces (1/2 bottle) of my chosen sauce, poured directly over the top of the meat., and sealed in by a tight foil wrap. I put the hams back on the same cooking rack and put them back into the cooker on the elevated cookie racks.
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I closed the lid and changed the controller to a cooking temperature of 350.

I normally would say that I never cook big meats, i.e., pork butts, brisket, ribs, etc., to a specific temperature, as I probe for tenderness, but I have cooked this recipe enough times to say that, cooking this recipe exactly as I have stated, the ham is done at approximately 204 degrees internal (in the thickest meat, not in fat or next to the bone).

When the hams temped at approximately 204 degrees (they were 2 degrees apart), I turned off the cooker, removed the cooking grate with the hams from the cooker and closed the cooker lid for the cool down cycle. I set the cooking grate on the counter and let it sit for about 15 minutes, After the 15 minutes, I opened the foil up so the heat could vent off the meat in preparation to pull the meat apart.

Sorry, the lens on my phone was fogged up, so the meat looks dry
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After venting for 15 minutes (you can wait longer if you desire), Using the foil, I carefully removed the ham from the cooking grate. You need to be very careful doing this, as the foil on the grate and the foil around the ham can stick together, and if you are not careful, you can tear a hole in the foil around the ham, and have a sauce waterfall (don't ask how I know, just take my word for it). I then put the ham package (foil and ham) in a pan, so if the foil gets torn during the pulling process, you won't loose any of the juice. The ham is torn apart and put into another pan. The juice in the foil is put through a fat separator, and the "good stuff" is added back to the meat and mixed in until it is all soaked up.

This is a picture of the meat as it is being shredded, prior to the "good stuff" being added back to it.
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Sorry, I did not get any finished product pictures. If you make this, you will know why. Enjoy.

Yoder_Herb

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