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Wood is the only way to go! I use the Chargriller and love it, it doubles as a grill with a sidebox. Tricks to doing it....alright, I will give you the biggest ones. Big Grin

Type of woods depend on what your smoking.
(fruit or hickory for pork and chicken, oak and mesquite for beer)

Low and slow

Do the initial smoking, then wrap(leaving bottom slightly open if you are not basting) in aluminum foil for the middle part, then out of foil for the end smoking

Baste with apple cider for pork

Have fun! Big Grin
Mark do you have Thirsty Man's email? He smokes in competitions and has like sponsors and stuff.

I can help out on certain meats. I do a lot of ribs, turkey, pulled pork and brisket. There are some tricks to learn, especially about finishing the meat and moderating the heat and amount of smoke you get.

I smoke on air dried 12 year old oak only. That's an old barrel. When we declassify them after 3 uses, Stef cuts them up into chunks and I use that wood. Most pro's don't like oak because they get it too green, but this stuff is well, well, well seasoned. I place the chunks with the wine side up and the wine will steam into the smoker.

It's about $120 to fed-ex a barrel Big Grin
quote:
Originally posted by Stefania Wine:
I smoke on air dried 12 year old oak only. That's an old barrel. When we declassify them after 3 uses, Stef cuts them up into chunks and I use that wood.


12 year old? I thought that most barrels were made from wood seasoned for 36 months. You haven't been going for 9 years...

How about used whisky barrels? I bet they are dead easy to light Wink
I also have a smoker box that I use with my propane grill. But Alton Brown says that burning propane releases water vapor that settles on the meat and doesn't allow the smoke to penetrate. He may be right about that, I don't know. I smoked a turkey breast once with applewood chips that was heavenly. But with babyback ribs, even after 4 hours or so of smoking with cherry wood chips, there isn't a whole lot of smoke flavor imparted.
quote:
Originally posted by Dave Tong BBP:


12 year old? I thought that most barrels were made from wood seasoned for 36 months. You haven't been going for 9 years...



I also didn't use 100% new oak in 05 and 06. Smile What we bought new in 06 is empty now waiting for a final fill in 2010, it will be graveyarded in 2012. We have a few 04 and 05's still in the winery but the 01's and 02's have all been retired. The last two we cut up where 2000 vintage.

Besides the stuff that was already at CdO I bought in old barrels from Martin Ranch and Big Basin.
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
Anybody have a weber charcoal grill?
Hey g-man, I have one and smoked some pork (baby-back?) ribs a couple of weeks ago. You need to check on it every thirty minutes between the coals and wood chips burning out. You can't put too many coals in or else the heat is too strong, and you will need to put those coals on one side and the ribs on the other. It took about 3 hours for a pack of those ribs from Costco.
My backyard is full of different smoking machines. I favor a traditional BBQ with indirect heat and smoke pouches for smaller cuts of meat, usually ribs. Just find the BBQ easier to maintain a constant temperature. I also have a custom made smoker with the side fire box that I use for larger cuts of meat like pork shoulders and brisket. The thing is made of titanium and will likely be passed off for multiple generations! I tend to use apple wood, but have been playing with used whisky barrels with some success. I would recommend soaking to some degree, otherwise you get a lot of flame and it makes keeping a consistent temperature more difficult

Smoking is an art that takes a lot of trial and error to get good at. I seem to always have enough family and neighbors around to give me lots of constructive feedback...
my cousin builds competition smokers out of old commercial water heaters. He makes 2 main sizes - one that is 7 and half feet long and one that is 5. All indirect heat from an attached firebox.

pictures of a tailgate

We start with regular charcol and then once smoking temp is reached, we add the wood for smoking. I mainly use seasoned hickory from our farm. Occasionally I will use a fruit wood if it is properly seasoned. I do have 2 stefania barrels that I have cut up and am slowly using. I am generally not a fan of oak for smoking, but the wine barrels do not seem to impart the green flavors that I usually get from oak smoke. Sometimes there is a sweet fruit type flavor, sometimes there is not... I need to run a side by side comparison next time we use two smokers.

I will share whatever receipes you are interested in, but it would help to know your set up first.

G

PS - don't soak the wood.
Traeger XL. I looked at several different smokers, the egg, the Viking stainless steel box, and am glad I went with the Traeger grill.

Cons, it less versatile in terms of the wood you use, because you have to use pellets made by the manufacturer.

Pros, I walk outside, flip a switch, and the smoker is going. Precise temperatur control between 180-450 degrees, and choice of many hardwoods, apple, cherry, and mesquite are the ones I use most.

Apple gives a nice sweetness, cherry and oak give a good neutral smoke flavor, and mesquite has a little more edge to it. For anyone looking for a smoker, you should definetly consider this one for its ease of use. The finished product is always really good as well. My neighbor has a big smoker that he uses comercially at fairs and music concerts, and his results are not better than mine, in fact, I prefer the results I get with the Traeger. I get better temperatur control, and so my meat rarely gets dried out.
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
Anybody have a weber charcoal grill?


I bought an add-on for the Weber kettle grill called the Smokenator 1000. Great add on and works wonderfully well. The inventor lives close to me (San Jose), so I was able to buy my stuff from him. He's super nice, has it down to a science, and even hands out his cell phone number in case you are mid smoke and need help.

keytohwy
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
Aluminum foil on the grill grates?


Get a grill basket instead. I assume this is for fish or veggies. If it is for fish consider using cedar planks or if you don't like the flavor, you can buy a press basket that holds that fish. I'd skid the aluminum foil.

Now, if you are "steaming" something in aluminum foil (like a shrimp in a butter garlic suace), then go ahead!


G
I considered the Traeger and Big Green Egg, but went with a Bradley Digital 4 rack instead and love it. A bunch of the old timers that I know who smoked on wood and coalsnfor 30-50 years swear by these things now. After having my brisket and corned beef brisket on Sunday, I can understand why! So easy, and so good! Pick the flavor some yup want, fill up the smoke bisquette injector, set the smoke time, temperature, and duration and go. Used my dual Maverick thermometer, one in each, and was good to go. Corned beef took 5 hours to get to 170 degrees internal, and brisket took 14 hours to get to 185 internal. Pictures on Facebook.
After successfully hurdling a recent brisket ordeal, I started keeping my eyes open for a real smoker. The brisket turned out great, but was a real pain in the a$$ to do on my five-burner propane grill; in that I had to lift the lid to change out the smoker box every 30-45 minutes, losing heat and increasing the cooking time in the process. (BTW, my friend has called me from China where he is now living, and told me he has dreamt about that brisket. Said it was the best he ever had, so I guess a lost night's sleep was worth it. Big Grin) I'm really starting to get into this. I've done a number of pork babybacks in the past couple years and had roughly the same sucess and difficulties.

So my local big box hardware store had a season clearance sale last weekend, and I picked up a decent sized side-smoker for a pittance. I had looked at many types. Most of the verticle ones I saw looked very cheaply made, and were either electric (Red Face) or propane fired. Doesn't seem right to me. The Big Green Egg was nice, but very pricey, ditto the Traeger types. Although I know that the Traegers are easy and convenient, for a guy who's cooked over a campfire many times before, having computerized digital controls seem like "cheating" to me, somehow. Also, I don't like the idea of having to find someplace that sells the right kind of pellets for the rest of my smokers life. I can get lump charcoal and wood anywhere.
So I put it together (heavy s.o.b.) and bought more brisket, ribs, and cherry & hickory chunks for Labor Day Weekend, only to find that it's supposed to rain here all damn weekend. Mad Mad Mad
Maybe the money I saved will go towards one of those tent canopies... Roll Eyes
quote:
Originally posted by keytohwy:
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
Anybody have a weber charcoal grill?


I bought an add-on for the Weber kettle grill called the Smokenator 1000. Great add on and works wonderfully well. The inventor lives close to me (San Jose), so I was able to buy my stuff from him. He's super nice, has it down to a science, and even hands out his cell phone number in case you are mid smoke and need help.

keytohwy


What's your take on the attachment now? Do you love it? Do you still use it? Or was it too much of a pain in the ass that you gave up on it? I asked for a new Weber One-Touch Gold in blue for my birthday, and I can' wait to play around with it! Cheers! -mJ
I have not tried a Smokenator, so I can't really say how much improvement you might see. However on my One-Touch Gold, I have had great results without one, using the Minion method.
What I do is set up for indirect heat by placing a cheap, aluminum foil pan under the meat, and fill the opposite side with a bunch of unlit charcoal. On one end of the charcoal pile, slip in a tin can with both ends removed so you have a hollow space within the charcoal. When you are ready, pour a dozen or so lit pieces of charcoal into that space, then lift the can out with tongs. This will give you an even, steady burn, and allow you to maintain a low temperature for up to 6 hours as the burn travels along the length of the charcoal. I also add about 4 cups of boiling water to the foil pan to help keep a steady temp and add moisture to the smoke. You can also use juice, beer, or whatever liquid you like.

I've had a lot of fun with my big offset smoker, but also a lot of sleepless nights tending it. It also takes a lot of fuel for each smoke, so I only use it for big projects. I use the Weber kettle for everything else.
I've looked around, and I think my next acquisition is going to be a Cookshack or Smokin Tex smoker. More "set it and forget it" style, so you can get some sleep or work done, instead of checking on it every 20-30 minutes.
quote:
Originally posted by Jersey Foodies:
quote:
Originally posted by keytohwy:
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
Anybody have a weber charcoal grill?


I bought an add-on for the Weber kettle grill called the Smokenator 1000. Great add on and works wonderfully well. The inventor lives close to me (San Jose), so I was able to buy my stuff from him. He's super nice, has it down to a science, and even hands out his cell phone number in case you are mid smoke and need help.

keytohwy


What's your take on the attachment now? Do you love it? Do you still use it? Or was it too much of a pain in the ass that you gave up on it? I asked for a new Weber One-Touch Gold in blue for my birthday, and I can' wait to play around with it! Cheers! -mJ


i got the weber smokey mountain on sale for 150$, it takes getting used to.

there's a technique called the minion technique that allows you to let it smoke over night. so far i've been pretty good wiht the results.

Got some pecan, apple, cherry, hickory and mesquite woods to play around with.

apple and cherry are my two favorites right now.
quote:
Originally posted by mneeley490:
I have not tried a Smokenator, so I can't really say how much improvement you might see. However on my One-Touch Gold, I have had great results without one, using the Minion method.
What I do is set up for indirect heat by placing a cheap, aluminum foil pan under the meat, and fill the opposite side with a bunch of unlit charcoal. On one end of the charcoal pile, slip in a tin can with both ends removed so you have a hollow space within the charcoal. When you are ready, pour a dozen or so lit pieces of charcoal into that space, then lift the can out with tongs. This will give you an even, steady burn, and allow you to maintain a low temperature for up to 6 hours as the burn travels along the length of the charcoal. I also add about 4 cups of boiling water to the foil pan to help keep a steady temp and add moisture to the smoke. You can also use juice, beer, or whatever liquid you like.

I've had a lot of fun with my big offset smoker, but also a lot of sleepless nights tending it. It also takes a lot of fuel for each smoke, so I only use it for big projects. I use the Weber kettle for everything else.
I've looked around, and I think my next acquisition is going to be a Cookshack or Smokin Tex smoker. More "set it and forget it" style, so you can get some sleep or work done, instead of checking on it every 20-30 minutes.


thirsty man recommended the big green egg, and having seen it, it's awesome (except it'll set you back 800$ since it's solid cast iron)
The Big Green Egg is indeed pretty awesome, and the temps it maintains rocks! When Ihave my ultimate outdoor kitchen in our next home, I will definitely add one of these. For now, it's not in the cards at this house.

I still LOVE my Bradley, and the whole "set it an forget it" mentality. I am plenty confident throwing a brisket or 4 in at 9PM, and going to bed without losing any sleep, and wakingup the next morning only to have to reload the smoke bisquettes, emptying the bisquette catcher (if needed), and refilling the water in the pan. It is just so easy, but doesn't give off the flavor or smoke ring like cooking with charcoal does.

Options are always good though, and the more the merrier! Looking forward to chistening my new Weber grill tomorrow night with some lump coals! Cheers! -mJ
quote:
Originally posted by CSM:
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
thirsty man recommended the big green egg, and having seen it, it's awesome (except it'll set you back 800$ since it's solid cast iron)


Mine's ceramic, not cast iron (and was a lot more than $800, but worth every penny IMO).


i thought it 's just a ceramic shell, i'm pretty sure it's made from solid cast iron.

i saw the medium one for 800$, you have the big one?
quote:
Originally posted by Jersey Foodies:
The Big Green Egg is indeed pretty awesome, and the temps it maintains rocks! When Ihave my ultimate outdoor kitchen in our next home, I will definitely add one of these. For now, it's not in the cards at this house.

I still LOVE my Bradley, and the whole "set it an forget it" mentality. I am plenty confident throwing a brisket or 4 in at 9PM, and going to bed without losing any sleep, and wakingup the next morning only to have to reload the smoke bisquettes, emptying the bisquette catcher (if needed), and refilling the water in the pan. It is just so easy, but doesn't give off the flavor or smoke ring like cooking with charcoal does.

Options are always good though, and the more the merrier! Looking forward to chistening my new Weber grill tomorrow night with some lump coals! Cheers! -mJ


did you find the minion method that mneeley talked about? I've had my smokey mountain run for 9 hours straight using the kingsford competition briquets + 3-4 chunks of wood on a 15 lb pork shoulder.
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
quote:
Originally posted by CSM:
quote:
Originally posted by g-man:
thirsty man recommended the big green egg, and having seen it, it's awesome (except it'll set you back 800$ since it's solid cast iron)


Mine's ceramic, not cast iron (and was a lot more than $800, but worth every penny IMO).


i thought it 's just a ceramic shell, i'm pretty sure it's made from solid cast iron.

i saw the medium one for 800$, you have the big one?


I have the XL. I think it stays way too cool for it to be cast iron (and the website says it's made of "space age ceramics" whatever that means) though it's certainly heavy enough to be cast iron. Regardless, it's the best and most versatile grill out there IMO. Very happy with my purchase.

From the website:

The EGG retains moisture in foods and releases flavor unequalled by other types of cooking, indoors or outdoors, thanks to the space-age ceramics from which the cooker is made. Foods don't dry out and meat undergoes little or no shrinkage. Foods will have a natural and wholesome quality and there are no metallic or chemical tastes. The ceramic surface doesn't get as hot as a metal cooker, also making the EGG safer to use.
quote:
Originally posted by CSM:
space-age ceramics from which the cooker is made. Foods don't dry out and meat undergoes little or no shrinkage. Foods will have a natural and wholesome quality and there are no metallic or chemical tastes. The ceramic surface doesn't get as hot as a metal cooker, also making the EGG safer to use.


haha i don't know about you, but if i were an engineer trying to lift a big ass shuttle into space, i'd want it to be as light as possible ;-)

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