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The Smoking and BBQ thread


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those Webers are fine, you can do pretty much everything on them, its just a bit more faff to get 2 zone cooking going and they're less fuel efficient & temp stable, meaning longer cooks can be a bit more effort

 

I've had a rolled shoulder joint on the go on my big bbq since around 1230, started it skin side down high above the coals to get some heat into the fat (helps the crackling later), then put it indirect away from the heat at about 180c, will just crank it up a bit in while to really get the crackling perfect - making me drool whenever I step out the back door

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3 hours ago, Gotters said:

those Webers are fine, you can do pretty much everything on them, its just a bit more faff to get 2 zone cooking going and they're less fuel efficient & temp stable, meaning longer cooks can be a bit more effort

 

I've had a rolled shoulder joint on the go on my big bbq since around 1230, started it skin side down high above the coals to get some heat into the fat (helps the crackling later), then put it indirect away from the heat at about 180c, will just crank it up a bit in while to really get the crackling perfect - making me drool whenever I step out the back door

 

What would you say is a good to start learning with, maybe something thats not too long a cook like a belly pork or something?

 

I have ordered one of the maverick wireless thermometers and had a test burn of some coals to clean it up - grill looks better so will give it a really good clean (maybe an oven pride jobbie) and try some steaks on it in the week!

 

I plan to cook a lot on it, love doing stuff on the gas bbq and use it all the time but looking to expand my cooking!

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Belly still takes a good while to render the fat away and get nice crackling (i have them on for 6-7h), if the fat not rendered it can be a bit nasty to eat.

 

I'd start with shorter cooks to get totally familiar with temp control and how the grill reacts over time, just some simple smaller roasting joints or smaller ribs that will cook quicker. Then once you happy with temp control and how long the fuel lasts step it up to something longer.

 

wouldnt go too ambitious first out maybe choose something forgiving, like a smaller pork rolled shoulder or leg joint or beef rib joint (but again not some huge fred flintstone thing) with some good fat, so the window for failure is far bigger. Then once happy ramp things up

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Cooked another roast chicken on my kamado joe jr last night. Always comes out super moist, but had a bit of an issue with blue oil smoke last night - is the probably cause a lack of cleaning of the grill and ceramic diffuser ? I hadn't fully done this last night (just scraped them off, rather than giving them a full clean back to sparkling condition) - would this have been the cause? I was under the impression (from watchign some youtube vids, etc) that the kamado interior almost gets a patina like an iron skillet and therefore didn't need to be totally scoured clean each time - have i totally made that up? :huh:

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I've never cleaned the ceramic other than a brushing off if I get ash on it in the main body of the inside of bbq. For the circular heat deflectors I never let grease or fat drip onto to them directly, I'd either cover in heavy duty foil or put a drip tray underneath to catch, meaning I've never got old stale drippings to burn off.

 

the kamados are very low maintenance and never had anything odd burning off, as a thought though you didn't use any sort of lighter fluid did you, it's total no no as can soak into the ceramic as its porous, only ever use natural fire lighters.

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I got the Maverick today, range seems good and can reach my BBQ area with receiver in the living room - bungalow and living room is at the front with lots of solid brick walls in the way so was dubious it would - well pleased with it.

 

Having not bought charcoal in years and just picked up a bag of aldi briquettes to experiment with any recommendations and places to get it in bulk?

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I use london log company that supply all the bbq places in london, think they buy some stuff in from oxford charcoal who i've used as well and do delivery. I bought a big box of restaurant grade from Ocado and it was ok but not the best stuff i've had

 

dont skimp on the charcoal, i really notice how the good stuff burns longer and lights easier, my current fave is a mix of london log engineered charcoal (even shape mini log things) with some of their single species charcoal (like apple wood or chestnut)

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17 hours ago, Gotters said:

I've never cleaned the ceramic other than a brushing off if I get ash on it in the main body of the inside of bbq. For the circular heat deflectors I never let grease or fat drip onto to them directly, I'd either cover in heavy duty foil or put a drip tray underneath to catch, meaning I've never got old stale drippings to burn off.

 

the kamados are very low maintenance and never had anything odd burning off, as a thought though you didn't use any sort of lighter fluid did you, it's total no no as can soak into the ceramic as its porous, only ever use natural fire lighters.

 

Nah, never use lighter fluid. Always kindling.

 

Guessing it might have been some residual from the ribs I'd cooked the prior weekend having dripped onto the coals and the ceramic (where it missed the drip tray). Will keep them generally cleaned down better to keep them under control.

 

Having used it 4-5 times already this year, I'm confident that I'll get way more use this year than last regardless of whether we have a proper summer or not. It just gives everything a much more interesting flavour than in the kitchen.

 

 

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I had my first test of the weber and thermometer setup and with almost a full chimney of briquettes and indirect side was able to easily hold 210 degrees c for 2+ hours (went out so i suspect 3 constant) and even did a quick ribeye on it after opening the vents up - was a very nice lunch!

 

Will have a play for holding a lower temp next but tempted to do a chicken or similar having seen how easy it is to get a roasting temp and hold it!

 

 

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23 minutes ago, Gotters said:

How was it, I find the trick with pork belly is a very low cook to start for hours to get the fat rendering away (don't like big lumps of solid fat in the meat).

 

your crackling looks awesome

 

Cheers, I followed a guide that said to blast it for 30-45 mins at 500f so I did, 30 mins at 500ish by the probe. Next was unto 3-4 hours at 350f, it took a long time for the temp to drop and within the hour the internal temp was 170f so pretty much done :o I left it all told for just under 3 hours and internal temp hit 190f.

 

I was worried it would have dried out but it was probably the juiciest bit of pork I have ever had, the tray simply had some onions + garlic + cider in it.

 

The guide (video from riverside garden centre, they are a big weber shop) had a much bigger bit of belly so maybe I needed to adjust the timings but I don't know what it would have been like had I taken it off at internal 180f!

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I love Riverside, not far from me and I was there only yesterday, can never walk out without some new gadget, bit of gear or bag of wood chunks.

 

I go a lot lower with the temps, give it a quick go at start with the fat side down over the charcoal to get some heat in the fat (grill doesn't need to be stoked up for this to work so you don't get too hot and then need to lose temp), then go for 5-6h at 225F, just to get that fat melting soft and runny, then I up the temp for the last hour or so to really get the crackling crisped up. I get left with very little soft white fat under the crackling and no real discernible lumps of fat in the meat. Making me hungry now just thinking about it.

 

Belly & shoulder are incredibly forgiving, I reckon its almost impossible to overcook them and the window to pull them off the heat is pretty wide.

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I did a pulled pork today, 1.6kg after the fat was trimmed off and took almost exactly 8 hours to hit 190f internal - the snake method worked a treat with no adding of coals and minimal vent playing (mostly caused by very high winds and it being so bloody cold this morning)

 

File%2029-04-2016%2C%2010%2009%2025.jpeg

 

The little bit tuned out like this, little dry but the flavour was sensational - adding some sauce and mind blown! No more slow cooker pulled pork for me.

 

File%2029-04-2016%2C%2017%2018%2044.jpeg

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40 minutes ago, dunkle said:

Snake method??

 

You line up the briquettes around the outside of the bowl so they form a C - 2 wide x 2 tall and then you light 8-12 in the chimney and add them at the stat of the snake and they burn like a fuse.

 

If you look in my first pic you can see the start of the snake, it cooked for 8 hours between 225 - 270f with minimal vent adjustment and no need to add fuel. I was amazed how well it worked, took a while to hit the temp but mainly due to wind as as the day got warmer the temp got hotter - I imagine on a still day you would barely need to adjust the vents at all.

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I've spent the last two weekends getting the garden in a decent state for the summer and the one thing that was missing was a BBQ. I went through the thread for inspiration and ended up buying a ProQ Excel 20, which is probably ridiculous and unnecessary but I'm pretty excited about trying it out.

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how can a bbq ever be 'ridiculous and unnecessary' ?!?!

 

we ate all day off mine yesterday with picanha steak (got from Waitrose and was pretty decent) some nice burgers and some awesome baby back ribs

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BTW BBQ types, I have been trying various briquettes out and bang for buck you can not beat the Aldi ones they have - £2.89 for 4kg and they are not far behind Weber briquettes or Australian heat beads in my testing but vastly cheaper. Obv don't touch the instant light ones but that goes for anything full of chemicals.

 

Im having much less success with actual lump wood charcoal with the stuff I've bought generally having far too many small bits that fall through the chimney/grates and spit like hell :(

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i never use briquettes but have high sided ceramic grills, noticed the webers are shallower in the firebox and think that can make it harder to keep lump wood lit for a longer cook - I've never had a fire go out and had the thing on over night several times. Also i notice that cheap lump is always the smaller bits, the better stuff is larger and burns almost ash free

 

got a pork joint on now, not doing anything tricksy, simply salted up skin for some awesome crackling - I had read that if you chuck an onion (cut in half) into the coals the smells are amazing, and its true, making me so hungry. not sure if it will add to flavour of meat but smells gorgeous.

 

 

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onion didn't flavour the meat but just made the garden smell wonderful for a few hours as it slowly burnt up in the coals.

 

of all the things I expected to perfect on a bbq never thought when I started a few years back that pork crackling would be so good. never a scrap of waste on the joint.

 

had with some nice sweetcorn, wrapped in heavy foil with some butter and cooked for 15mins over the direct heat - the butter kind of soaks into the corn and the cobs caramelise without burning.

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I will give some decent lump wood a go, I do quite like the smoke it gives over briquettes - I did a couple of steaks over some briquettes last night and it still got to fuck off hot temps way above my gas BBQ or any cooker/pan I've used.

 

Other than cost I'm not seeing any reason to use lump wood to be honest and I think thats common amongst weber and dedicated smoker users - adding smoke via wood with a longer burning more controllable heat is a winner. I would love a ceramic and one day the wife may let me!

 

Like you the BBQ is becoming just the best way to cook things you normally do in an oven, rotisserie is going to be the next 'big' purchase having sampled some chicken on a mates. I highly recommend anyone with a BBQ tries this recipe..

 

https://dreamingoftgl.com/2016/04/10/chicken-doner/

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I hope this weather keeps up,  we've been eating in the garden every evening since Wednesday.  On Saturday I attempted a long smoke, two racks of ribs,  bbq beans and mac & cheese. 

 

I had to go out half way through to get some restaurant grade lumpwood as what I had was just falling through the bottom of the basket.  Writing that one off as a learning experience. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I have been using the BBQ lots, did a small Brisket on it yesterday and it was bloody good - used a rub recipe from Amazing ribs and got lucky as it was very small (1.1kg) but turned out moist and tender, I left it rolled up and I think that was the reason.

 

I also won a BBQ yesterday on Facebook, bit random but a Weber Mastertouch and some Jack Daniels related stuff is heading my way :):) Have a decision as while haven a Weber for each hand seems logical to me I'm being told I don't need four BBQ's, one of them can't count as its a rusty old gas one I've left in the garden...... yeah I walked into that trap!

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bbq maths is very similar to pushbike maths. the number you need is always the number you currently own plus 1

 

for no reason at all other then the fact riverside garden centre keeps tweeting about them, I need to own a Traeger pellet smoker

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  • 2 weeks later...
On 21 May 2016 at 8:56 AM, Gotters said:

bbq maths is very similar to pushbike maths. the number you need is always the number you currently own plus 1

 

for no reason at all other then the fact riverside garden centre keeps tweeting about them, I need to own a Traeger pellet smoker

 

I have said bike +1 disease already and now getting grief about the bbq in the box in the hall - having it sat there just makes me want to keep it as all new and shiny and  won it! I also got the table based BBQ really cheap so could set someone else on the path of greatness but selling it on cheap so quite like that idea - can always get a folder table to have outside!

 

I got a slow n sear last week but not had time to try it, going to do a shoulder of lamb on it..... maybe on the new one to christen it!

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  • 1 month later...

Looking at my first London log company order. They recommend the chip monks magik as the heat source and then wood charcoal for flavour.

 

Any recommendations from you guys? @Gotters - You seem to be barbecue king, any recommendations for the type of wood to use with pork? Also, do you still use a chimney to light the ogatan?

 

Looking to get stuff for the weekend. Will need a test run though so maybe Friday and Saturday.

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