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What are you cookin on the smoker?


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Grain Belt

This evening it is going to be beer brats for a main course with jalapeno poppers and smoked wings with a Siracha sauce off the Weber kettle for apps. On Sat. I smoked three racks of spares with a little apple and pecan on the Weber kettle. Yesterday I grilled turkey tenderloins (the inner segment of the breast found in all poultry) with some Yukon golds. I seared the turkey pieces and then finished them indirect on the kettle. This weekend I also replaced all the internal components in my Weber Summit Silver gasser. I put in new burners, flavorizer bars, and grates. As you can tell I'm a little loyal to my Webers. I have two 22 1/2 inch kettles, an 18 inch Jumbo Joe portable, and the Summit gasser. I enjoy cooking on them very much.

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Working on a brisket on the BGE for my nephew's HS graduation party tomorrow. Got a little cocky with the "set it and forget it" concept -- went to dinner downtown, then to a friend's to watch the latter half of the Black Hawks' game. Came home after five and a half hours away to find the fire had gone out and the big hunk o' beef down to 107 degrees. The relight and cook is underway....

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Looks like this is where the gurus gather :)

Tried my first pulled pork today in a weber kettle. Pretty successful but a few questions for the illuminati...

I set up and ran with approx 225-250F for the cook, as pretty chuffed I managed that with zero practice! I knew about the stall around 150-160F and rode that out fine.

However I seemed to hit a second stall at 180F. Finally had to pull it off after 10.5 hour cook and had been anchored on 180F for the final 2.5 hrs. Can anyone advise a newbie what happened? I was aiming to go through to a final temp of 195-200F. I checked the kettle temp and the meat temp with a couple of different thermometers and they were consistent so I'm pretty sure I was in the ballpark.

Not sure what difference final temp would have made. The pork was flavourful and pulled pretty easily as far as I can tell. I thought it could be more tender though...

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Grain Belt

Did you foil? Often on my kettle I will foil at 170 or so until it hits 200. I will then rest it in a cooler for an hour or two, and then pull. If you are running out of coals after the foil you can also just throw it in the oven. All you need is a heat source at this stage. If the coals are still working well then by all means keep it on the kettle for the foil stage too.

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Hi GB :)

No I didn't foil. I read it was better to keep it simple first time out and try not to get in the kettle much at all.

Kettle was still sitting solid as a rock at 228F 30 minutes after I took the pork out. I closed it all down at that point to save whatever fuel was left.

I wrapped the pork in foil and rested for a bit over an hour before pulling.

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Hi to you Pieface. It sounds like the most important part was the good taste you achieved. If you can keep the faith and keep the pork on the kettle until it hits 195 or 200 I think you will hit a new stage of tenderness. The foil rest for an hour or two is great. To play devil's advocate some old timers I know never foil at any stage because they feel it ruins the bark. I tend to like the tenderness I gain with foil more than super crunchy bark so I use the method I previously mentioned. Glad to hear about another Weber enthusiast trying some new things.

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Sid my first go at armadillo eggs. Didn't want to cut up a bunch of jalapenos, so I used larger chilies. Made the frau one with a poblano, two with anaheim peppers for me, one with a banana for a buddy stopping by later. Just pulled them off the grill and they look fantastic.

Edited by elbowguru
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Bourbon Boiler

Has anyone ever played around with pipe tobacco on the wood at the end to flavor the smoke? A co-worker asked me about this the other day and I'd never heard of it.

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Tonight's cook was fabulous! Baby back ribs on the Big Green Egg. 1) Liberally dry rubbed with equal parts Kosher salt, black pepper, paprika, and brown sugar. 2) Smoked (with hickory chunks) at 250-280 for three hours. 3) Wrapped in foil and add a sauce of 3 T butter, 3 T bourbon, 1/2 C apple cider. Sprinkled the rack liberally with brown sugar. Wrapped up tight and put the foil package back on the grill for one more hour.

I have made some pretty darned good ribs many times before, but these were my best. I got the recipe from Stephen Raichlen's TV show, this morning.

Tim

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Has anyone ever played around with pipe tobacco on the wood at the end to flavor the smoke? A co-worker asked me about this the other day and I'd never heard of it.
As the fictional character Roy "Tin Cup" McAvoy said, "that idea has promise."
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Made a great bourbon bacon barbecue sauce today using this recipe. Some nice double-smoked bacon from Wisconsin and EC 12 for the bourbon. Our knives are ridiculously dull, so I ended up using a stick blender to puree the chunks of bacon and onion when it was done.

I'll be firing up the BGE at sundown tomorrow night to start a 10-pound beef brisket -- hopefully the remote thermometer won't hit me with any warnings overnight. Late in the morning Saturday three racks of St. Louis cut ribs will join the brisket and ultimately get a sauce glaze (I serve the brisket without sauce -- folks can add it if they must). Then in the early afternoon I'll fire up a Weber, get the Smokenator going and smoke up five pounds of wings. Other Webers will be put to use in the late afternoon for burgers, beer brats, hot dogs, shrimp, portabellos, vegi burgers...we love cooking up a storm for our annual Summer Solstice BBQ.

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Last weekend I stayed at a cabin in Northern Wisconsin to see a concert with some good friends. I brought along my 18 inch Smokey Joe Platinum Weber and filled it with smoked apps for before the show. Using some apple wood with a little Royal Oak charcoal I cooked up some Asian chicken wings, bacon wrapped cheese stuffed jalapenos, and some stuffed mushrooms. I created a second grate for cooking using a 14 inch smokey joe grate, some carriage bolts, washers, and nuts. This allowed me to cook the wings on the top grate at higher heat. It is amazing how much food one can cook on a compact portable grill with a few small mods. Old Grand Dad BIB was my pour of choice to go with everything and it was excellent!

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Okay guys. Looking for some quick advice, as my wife just bought me the 18" WSM for Father's Day and I'm anxious to get going now that I've assembled it. I've been reading lots of conflicting info about the necessity of having to season the WSM before I actually start using it to smoke meats. Meathead's web site references Harry Soo's (of Slap Yo' Daddy BBQ fame) method of running one load of briquets at high heat and another one or two with fatty scrap meats that you don't intend to eat, just to get it greasy and smokey inside. Whereas the Virtual Weber Bullet guy says seasoning is unnecessary because the interior of the smoker has a porcelain-type finish (unlike cast iron) and therefore no manufacturing residue to burn off. And if I do follow the Harry Soo method, which calls for smoking bacon, chicken parts and pork fat to grease it up, would it be acceptable to use any throwaway stuff I can get for free from my local butcher or would that put a funky smell in my smoker that I wouldn't get by buying some inexpensive meats at Aldi's? What say ye?

Also, what is the verdict on Weber's Rib Rack (6406 model). I don't want a rack with a design that has too many wires, making clean-up a hassle, but I've read that this popular Weber rack has rather tight spacing, making it difficult to remove ribs any larger than small to medium-sized babybacks.

Finally, please weigh in on what thermometers you guys like to use. I've been eyeing a kit from ThermoWorks that has two "leave in" probes, one for the smoker and one for your meat, and thought I'd supplement it with their inexpensive instant read thermometer (the $20 one, not the $100 Thermopen). Any thoughts/comments/suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

Edited by unclebunk
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Hi to you Pieface. It sounds like the most important part was the good taste you achieved. If you can keep the faith and keep the pork on the kettle until it hits 195 or 200 I think you will hit a new stage of tenderness. The foil rest for an hour or two is great. To play devil's advocate some old timers I know never foil at any stage because they feel it ruins the bark. I tend to like the tenderness I gain with foil more than super crunchy bark so I use the method I previously mentioned. Glad to hear about another Weber enthusiast trying some new things.
I just wanted to second everything that Grain Belt stated. When I started smoking, I never foiled my pork butts. My butts were OK but I knew they were not as good as the people who smoke competitively. I attended a bbq class that was hosted by someone who has won a lot of bbq competition. The tips I learned to smoking great bbq have been outstanding. One of the main tips was foiling the butts at the stall temp - around 160 degrees. Not only does foiling the butts at 160 degrees make for better pulled pork, it speeds up the cooking process so you finish smoking a few hours earlier than if you don't foil. The one drawback is that you do lose out on that firmer bark if that is your thing. But if you smoke your butts at 225 degrees during the entire cook and foil when your butts are at 160 degrees, you should have sufficient bark at that time. And your butts will have taken in enough smoke flavor before you foil.
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Finally, please weigh in on what thermometers you guys like to use. I've been eyeing a kit from ThermoWorks that has two "leave in" probes, one for the smoker and one for your meat, and thought I'd supplement it with their inexpensive instant read thermometer (the $20 one, not the $100 Thermopen). Any thoughts/comments/suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

So far I'm happy with this dual-probe remote thermometer -- though it's gone up 20 bucks since I ordered it two weeks ago. And it comes with Meathead's temperature guide magnet!

I love my Thermopen. Of course I ordered it just a few weeks before they introduced the backlit model. Que sera, sera....

Also, the 6406 Weber rib rack can be a PitA when it comes time to remove ribs. On the other hand, I did some very lean baby backs (two pounds per rack) recently with the BGE V-rack and the copious space allowed one rack of ribs to kinda twist and curl in a most unusual way that I'd never seen before....

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So far I'm happy with this dual-probe remote thermometer -- though it's gone up 20 bucks since I ordered it two weeks ago. And it comes with Meathead's temperature guide magnet!

I love my Thermopen. Of course I ordered it just a few weeks before they introduced the backlit model. Que sera, sera....

Also, the 6406 Weber rib rack can be a PitA when it comes time to remove ribs. On the other hand, I did some very lean baby backs (two pounds per rack) recently with the BGE V-rack and the copious space allowed one rack of ribs to kinda twist and curl in a most unusual way that I'd never seen before....

Thanks for the quick response, Steve. I nearly purchased that Maverick ET732 a couple of times but hedged on getting it after reading that the programming was a bit confusing and the temp readings could sometimes be wildly inaccurate. I saw it not long ago for as low as $65 and the remote monitoring has great appeal, but the ThermoWorks seems great too and, by reputation, is very reliable. How many times have you used the Maverick and have you seen any odd behavior from it?

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Thanks for the quick response, Steve. I nearly purchased that Maverick ET732 a couple of times but hedged on getting it after reading that the programming was a bit confusing and the temp readings could sometimes be wildly inaccurate. I saw it not long ago for as low as $65 and the remote monitoring has great appeal, but the ThermoWorks seems great too and, by reputation, is very reliable. How many times have you used the Maverick and have you seen any odd behavior from it?
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To attempt to reply to the "seasoning" question I feel that there is an in-between answer. I have used many different Weber products both charcoal and gas. I believe there should be a "burn out" on both charcoal and gas products. In the case of the WSM I would light a load of charcoal and try to sustain a temp of 300 or higher for an hour or so to heat off any manufacturing oil residues etc. I don't think a "grease seasoning" will add anything of value for your needs.

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Thanks for the info, Grain. I'm leaning towards your suggestion of one hot run before I chuck on a nice Boston butt and think that's what I'll do tomorrow if it doesn't rain.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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I didn't season my WSM and I never had a problem with funk or bad taste.

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Today-try to make authentic Baltimore Pit Beef with Tiger Sauce. Washington Post recipe.

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Thanks for the info, Grain. I'm leaning towards your suggestion of one hot run before I chuck on a nice Boston butt and think that's what I'll do tomorrow if it doesn't rain.

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Half the fun of outdoor cooking is finding ways to overcome the elements! I've got my BGE under a canopy, but I plan to make something like this as well. Let the smoke get out while keeping the rain out....

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