Cooking Tips

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What is a Boston Butt anyway?

Boston Butts are one of the world's best kept secrets--but you've probably eaten it many times at your favorite BBQ shack when you ordered pulled pork. The name is not very appetizing, but there's a history there.

Additional Information

Pulled pork, or what a lot of people call bar-b-que, whether on a plate or a bun is a tasty way to serve a Boston Butt. Although the name doesn't exactly conjure up grand images of a fine dining experience, there's an explanation of why it's called a Boston Butt. On it's website, The National Pork Board explains it this way:

Pork shoulder is the top portion of the front leg of the hog. The terminology for pork shoulder can vary widely depending on the region. However, the lower 'arm' portion of the shoulder is most commonly called the arm picnic. The upper part of the shoulder, often called the Boston blade roast (also known as Boston- style butt), comes from the area near the loin and contains the shoulder blade bone.

"In pre-revolutionary New England and into the Revolutionary War, some pork cuts (not those highly valued, or "high on the hog," like loin and ham) were packed into casks or barrels (also known as "butts") for storage and shipment. The way the hog shoulder was cut in the Boston area became known in other regions as "Boston Butt." This name stuck and today, Boston butt is called that almost everywhere in the US, ...except in Boston."

(Hey, I just realized where the saying, eating "high on the hog" came from!)

The Butt can be served numerous ways. Grill it and chop it up. Slice it and grill pork steaks. Slow cook it and serve it as pulled pork. Any way you slice it, it's good!

So there you have it. The delicious, inexpensive and popular cut of meat with the goofy name is truly a griller's delight. CLICK HERE to get a great recipe for "Bodacious Boston Butt BBQ."