There are two subjects sure to start a fistfight in hunting camps across the Southeast—football and barbecue. I’ll leave the pigskin discussions to other folks, but when it comes to the meat inside the skin, I’m willing to throw a few blows in defense of the country’s best barbecue, which comes from S’carlina. That’s South Carolina to the rest of us, home to four distinct types of ’cue, including a mustard-based sauce known locally as Carolina Gold.
This bright yellow soak is sweet and tangy, perfect to tame the wild flavors of an ol’ swamp hog that you stuck late the night before while a pack of dogs bawled in your ear. You could eat this with a fork and side of beans and greens, but it’s best piled high on a Kaiser bun and, because you are in the South after all, topped with a healthy dose of quality slaw.
5 lbs. pork butt or roast
1 pint apple cider vinegar in spray bottle
2 tbs. canola oil
¼ cup kosher salt
¼ cup brown sugar
¼ cup paprika
3 tbs. cumin
2 tbs. chili powder
2 tbs. black pepper
1 tbs. cayenne powder
1 tbs. red pepper flakes
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 cup yellow mustard
½ cup apple cider vinegar
½ cup honey
2 tbs. dark brown sugar
2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
Whisk sauce ingredients together in a small bowl and chill overnight to let flavors combine.
Thoroughly mix the rub ingredients together and massage into pork butt, reserving 1 tablespoon of rub. Let roast rest on counter for one hour.
Create a mop sauce by mixing reserved rub with apple cider vinegar and canola oil in a spray bottle.
Preheat smoker to 225 degrees. Add hickory chips to smoker pan.
Place pork roast on rack and smoke two hours.
After the second hour, start basting the roast with apple cider vinegar mop every hour, until internal temperature reaches 165 degrees. This will take anywhere from four to six hours.
Remove pork roast from smoker and wrap tightly with heavy-duty foil. Return roast to smoker.
Finish cooking the roast until the internal temperature reaches 195 degrees.
Remove pork butt from smoker and let rest 15 minutes.
Chop and serve on buns with slaw.