Pull your pork belly from the fridge and place it in the freezer for about 10 minutes (fat is much easier to trim when it's cold).
Time to trim off the skin and top layer of fat. You don’t want to trim all the fat away, but our preference is to trim some, if not most, of the areas of pure fat away. Use a very sharp knife to make gashes in the corner horizontally across the top of the piece of pork belly. Peel away the top layer of skin and fat as you go. (Click here for a video of someone trimming a small cut of pork belly).
Cut the meat into cubes. Aim for 1.5 inch cubes of pork belly. They will shrink quite a bit as they cook and by the time they are done, your pork belly burnt ends will be perfectly bite-size.
Drizzle the cubed pork belly with a little olive oil, then sprinkle generously with your favorite pork rub. Generously cover every piece of pork belly evenly with the Rollin Blue BBQ Pork Rub, then arrange them on a wire cooling and baking rack. This makes it easy to get the cubes of meat on and off the grill and it also allows better smoke circulation than putting the pork belly in a pan for the initial smoke. Let sit for 15 minutes before tossing on the smoker.
Smoke between 250°F for about 3 hours until dark red and a nice bark starts to form. Spritz the pork belly with apple juice every hour or whenever it starts to look dry.
Pull from the smoker an internal temperature of 190-195 °F . If you don't want to stress about checking on your pork belly check out this easy-to-use wireless thermometer.
Once off the smoker transfer the pork belly cubes to a disposable aluminum pan and add BBQ sauce, butter, and honey, stirring to evenly coat the cubes of pork belly. This will create a braising liquid that will give the sticky sweetness that is characteristic of smoked pork belly burnt ends.
Return the sauced pork belly to the smoker and cook for 1 hour or until the meat reaches 203°F to 205°F when a digital meat thermometer is inserted into the middle of one of the burnt ends.
Let rest for 20+ min before serving. Leftovers warm up really well the next day. You can even freeze the finished burnt ends, then reheat in the oven and they will still taste delicious!
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