NULL HYPOTHESIS 16 (Smoked Pulled Pork): Freeze-Dried Pulled Pork Maintains Its Flavor
Conclusion: We could not reject this hypothesis
Abstract: A buddy of mine cooked and smoked a pork Boston butt. We found freeze-dried smoked pulled pork to be amazing, and we were not able to reject our hypothesis.
Appx. 1.16kg (2.5 lbs) of smoked pulled pork
1 Harvest Right freeze dryer tray with a silicone mat
Above: The top photo is of smoked pulled pork before freeze-drying. The bottom photo is of the freeze-dried smoked pulled pork.
Started freeze drier to the non-liquid, pre-freeze setting (wait 30 mins.)
Arranged the pulled pork on the tray and then pulled the pork into thin strands
Weighed the tray (subtracting the weight of the tray, of course)
Once the pre-freeze cycle completed, placed the frozen trays in freeze-drier (with 3 other trays of food)
Started the freeze-drying cycle
Removed pulled pork from freeze-dryer
Weighed the pulled pork tray again
Our actual total starting weight of one batch of pulled pork on the tray was 1.168 kg and the finished weight was .419 kg (not including the tray itself).
The freeze-drier completed its ordinary cycle at 29 hours. The temperature scanner showed an approximate average temperature of 105° F. We did not find any cold spots.
The pulled pork smelled amazing when it came out of the freeze drier.
I was surprised at how good the pulled pork tasted right off the tray. It instantly became one of my top five freeze-dried foods of all time. The smoky flavor seems stronger, which is unusual because usually freeze-drying food reduces its smell. Pulled pork as a finger food is simply fantastic. This pulled pork was super-tender before freeze drying, and just melts in your mouth after freeze drying. We decided it is meat cotton candy, which sounds gross but tastes amazing.
Then we rehydrated a bowl of freeze-dried pulled pork with water in the microwave for a minute. We did not notice any significant taste difference between smoked pulled pork and rehydrated smoked pulled pork when both were reheated in the microwave.
We were not able to refute our hypothesis that freeze-dried smoked pulled pork retains its flavor.
We are huge fans of pulled pork cotton candy!