Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-)

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Relentless
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2010/03/10 10:15:58 (permalink)

Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-)


I know there are some Owensboro folks on here so lets hear it. Surely someone has done this before or knows a friend who has.



Posted March 10, 2010 12:13 AM March 10, 2010 12:13 AM While watching last Sunday's Kentucky/Florida game with some friends, one of my regular customers informed me that while he loved my BBQ, he was lusting after some mutton. I knew there was something wrong with him.

Long story short, after several phone calls to my normal suppliers, I am now the proud owner of a forequarter of mutton. This stupid thing weighs over 22 lbs. and includes the shoulder, neck, ribs and part of the loin. Now what?

Having never cooked this before I am a bit nervous about how to proceed. I think the whole thing will fit on my FEC 100, but am leaning towards cutting it up to avoid overcooking parts of it while waiting for the shoulder to get done.

Any of you guys ever done this?

On the other hand, one of my burgoo recipes does start out with "Take a forequarter of mutton"......



#1

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    mayor al
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 12:53:59 (permalink)
    OK Here's what I have seen, but not personally cooked myself.

    Moonlite BBQ in Owensboro has given tours of their kitchen/smoking area several times. They do what they call a "CLOD" of Mutton...basically a quarter, about 40-50 lbs in a chunk.  They do it in a closed-smoker (wood-fired) for a very long period of time.

    Here is a photo near the end of the process.   These are  in the Moonlite kitchen after being removed from the Smoker

       

    Last Summer we stopped at a Community Cookout near Wavery KY where they were doing pork and Mutton on an open pit. A huge crew of volunteers tended the pit for about 24 hours prior to feeding the whole town. These photos were taken at about 10am  before the food was served at 5pm. ( a bit more than half-way thru the cooking process.  
     
    Here is a photo of the whole Pit in Operation about 15 hours into the 24 hour cooking period.
     
     
     
    Tending the Mutton Rib chunks
       
     
       
     
      Moving BBQ Pork on the left and Mutton on the right in this photo.
       

    It looks like a long slow night for you...Good Luck !
     
    P S   I like Burgoo also, but haven't the patience to make it from scratch !
    post edited by mayor al - 2010/03/10 13:11:59
    #2
    Relentless
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 13:50:39 (permalink)
    Mayor Al,

    A picture IS worth a thousand words. That is very helpful & I appreciate it.

    What I have is what you are calling a rib chunk. After seeing your pics, I may cook it in one piece now.

    Thanks again for your response.
    #3
    mayor al
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 14:50:49 (permalink)
    INDIRECT HEAT  wood coals work for these guys.

    "Traditional" LOW and SLOW Timing.

    Patience and a lot of cold beer...it is in the 70's in Paducah right now...That's warm enough for Beer !!!  Hope your rain is as sparse as ours is this weekend...I have to finish spraying my fruit trees, (Not in the rain!!) BTW we are about 10 miles directly West of L-ville, just off I-64.
    post edited by mayor al - 2010/03/10 14:53:31
    #4
    Relentless
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 18:38:41 (permalink)
    It was warm enough for beer during the ice storm:-)

    One of my best friends is in Crestwood, so I am in your area from time to time.
    #5
    fabulousoyster
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 20:06:14 (permalink)
    Those pics are unreal!!!
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    mayor al
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/10 21:08:53 (permalink)
    Oyster-

     A lot of community churches, especially the Catholic Parishs of Western Kentucky do Summer BBQ's as a major fund-raiser. They schedule carefully during the summer months to prevent unnecessary competition for the public's business. That means that folks can attend a gathering like this almost every weekend while out for a drive in the country.

    Up near near Louisville they focus more on fried chicken dinners on a Sunday afternoon, with a church 'fair' boosting the cash-flow that day!

    The BBQ we photoed in the above shots was in Wavery, KY right across U S Highway 60 from the Peak Brothers BBQ Restaurant, a well-respected roadfood establishment.
     
    Here you can see the BBQ Restaurant across the road from the Church's Pit!
     
     
     
    A new guy gets the task of keeping the sauce simmering in the huge kettle at the end of the pit
     

     
    He then gets to haul his bucket of sauce around to Baste the Mutton as needed , for hours on end !! 
      
       
     
    I hope these photo-records generate a craving for BBQ for you, the way they do for me !!
     
     
     
      
    post edited by mayor al - 2010/03/10 21:21:29
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    tiki
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/11 16:43:16 (permalink)
    You got me salivating, Al!!!!
    #8
    Relentless
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    Re:Cooking a forequarter of mutton this weekend...help! :-) 2010/03/15 11:59:16 (permalink)
    I said I would post up the results, so here goes...

    I weenied out...got what meat I could off of the bones, chopped and sauced it then handed it to the customer. That was how he wanted it & I got repeated texts from him and the group he served it to bragging on how good it was. Glad they were happy as I was sure not.

    Forequarters are not a plan for my money...way too much waste. I did not even re-coup my costs and still charged the customer more than it was worth. I guess a lesson is worth something, eh?

    Does the hindquarter give a better yield....or is a boneless leg of lamb the way to go? Any other suggestions?
    #9
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