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When smoking you are taking meats up to a certain temp, or tenderness with a low heat.  In order to get to that "tender" point fats and collagen need to break down - forms with water to make gelatin (tender meat).  Triglycerides (saturated fat/meat fats), have a high melting point (about 160-170), and when these break down the meat gets really tender.  So when you are low and slow smoking fatty cuts of meat, there is a lot going on from the temps of 150-170, and most meats (depending on fat content) will have a stall at that point.

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31 minutes ago, just4fn said:

When hitting the stall,  do you typically just let it ride or do you turn up the heat?

 

9 times out of 10, let it ride.  You can also wrap it instead of turning up the temps, which can help.  I don’t wrap my meat anymore, but that’s just my personal choice.

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Just now, Bgosnell151 said:

 

9 times out of 10, let it ride.  You can also wrap it instead of turning up the temps, which can help.  I don’t wrap my meat anymore, but that’s just my personal choice.

I tried editing that to make it sound better, but I think I’m just making it worse.

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It really all depends. Wrapping and cooking at 275 and higher will definately mitigate the stall. 

 

Generally, I do both for brisket and Boston Butts. For beef ribs, I don’t wrap. 

 

Youll just have to experiment and find and find out what works best for you in regards to taste, texture and time. 

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On my weber smokey mountain, I almost always wrapped at 160.  I preferred an empty water pan, and it was a drier cook.  So I would wrap when the bark was right, and speed up the process.

 

Now with the KJ - it is a much more moist cook.  Half the time I am not 100% satisfied with the bark at the end of the cook - but I haven't experimented much with raising the temps slightly unwrapped the last hour.  The moisture retention in the KJ makes for the best ribs I have ever eaten though. 

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