The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

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Rich Sutton
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#151 Post by Rich Sutton » November 23rd, 2010, 3:06 pm

dteng wrote:Good point on the foil Rich.
Still pull at 160?
Yes still pull at 160, and rest 20-30 min. Should be yummy.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#152 Post by M. Sai » June 18th, 2011, 1:30 pm

Bob Wood wrote:
dteng wrote:Wow, coming on almost 2 months without a post.

OK.
So, what about tri tip?
Got some at Costco.

Rub?
Do you foil?
What finishing temp?

I would guess it is the same or similar to brisket?
Tri-tip is used in Santa Maria for their version of BBQ. Season liberally with salt, pepper and granulated garlic. It's grilled, not smoked. Cook over medium heat (or sear and then INdirect heat) until medium-rare (!125-130). Slice across the grain and serve with salad, garlic bread, pinquinto beans and salsa (fresh pico de gallo) to be authentic. It's got a little bit of chew, but it's also very flavorful.

No point in cooking it for 12 hours like a brisket. You'd be better off to just use brisket and save some money. I suppose you could smoke it for an hour or two. Just don't get past 130.

EDIT: SEE RED TEXT ABOVE.
Resurrecting this thread because I have a couple tri-tips I was planning to hit with a quick sear then smoke low and slow tomorrow. I had great success with doing a couple pork tenderloins on the smoker last week - same deal, quick sear followed by an hour or so in the smoker with a combo of oak and gnarly old grape vines. The meat took the smoke flavor very well after only and hour, so I was thinking the same treatment might do well with tri-tip. Thoughts??

Also - many smoke aficionados on the interwebs talk about pulling tri-tip @ 140 for med-rare... This sounds crazy (and way overcooked) for beef... I'm cooking for a big group, so I was thinking 130 would be a good target that would work with most preferences.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#153 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » June 18th, 2011, 2:13 pm

140 for Tri-tip is way too high. It isn't brisket. 130 and then a rest will give much better results.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#154 Post by M. Sai » July 1st, 2011, 8:23 am

Bill Tex Landreth wrote:140 for Tri-tip is way too high. It isn't brisket. 130 and then a rest will give much better results.
Forgot to follow-up on this... Dry Rubbed 5 hours before cooking, seared and then smoked two tri-tips. The meat was only in the smoker for about 50 minutes or so before it got to 130, but it made a huge difference! Finishing with smoke adds an extra layer of flavor - everyone at the table was a fan.

I've got two picnic shoulders in the smoker right now - gonna do pulled pork tacos for the 4th... Carolina vinegar sauce goes really well with Cholula hot sauce. Put it on a freshly made corn tortilla from the tortilleria that's a few blocks from our place and finish with chopped cilantro and a sprinkle of feta cheese. They are a Frankenstein of regional cuisine, but absolutely fantastic!
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#155 Post by Mark.Ricca » July 11th, 2011, 8:11 am

Picked up a 6# brisket flat piece on Saturday at Sam's Club. Dry rubbed it with homemade chili powder, S&P, 2.5 hours over hickory smoke, then into the Wolf @225F with a splash of Blue Moon and covered in foil for 3.5 hours.

Really juicy results and falling appart tender. Utilized the cheap oven thermometer in the Weber to maintain temp also and that works out really well.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#156 Post by Stefan Blicker » July 11th, 2011, 4:24 pm

I made a kind of salmon candy cubes that were fantastic in my Bradley. I'll have to find the recipe. But brine the cubes(1/2 inch cubes/pieces), drain, let them air dry really well, smoke them low temp for 3-4 hours, brushing every hour with a honey/water (suppose you could flavor this) glaze, let them sit out again and dry, makes the glaze firm up and get shiny. Awesome, sweet, salty salmon. I use apple and oak. Bit messy, with the glaze and all, but worth it.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#157 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » July 11th, 2011, 4:25 pm

Blicker wrote:I made a kind of salmon candy cubes that were fantastic in my Bradley. I'll have to find the recipe. But brine the cubes(1/2 inch cubes/pieces), drain, let them air dry really well, smoke them low temp for 3-4 hours, brushing every hour with a honey/water (suppose you could flavor this) glaze, let them sit out again and dry, makes the glaze firm up and get shiny. Awesome, sweet, salty salmon. I use apple and oak. Bit messy, with the glaze and all, but worth it.
Cool. I do a dry cure with sugar and salt to where the unsmoked salmon is jerky-like. Hit it with some alder and/or apple wood for an hour and it is pretty damn tasty.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#158 Post by Stefan Blicker » July 11th, 2011, 5:02 pm

One thing I have never successfully done is lox. Not gravlax but lox. I blew $100 trying one time. miserable failure.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#159 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 12th, 2011, 4:51 am

Though "lox" is, by definition, not totally clear....it means "salmon" in german/yiddish....and there are two types: cold-smoked and essentially pickled (the salty stuff that was sold by the peddlars in NY on the lower east side, as it was highly preserved by that....the cold-smoked stuff is not that difficult, but needs understanding and the right tools. I make it by a dry cure of sugar and salt for a couple of days; clean it off with water and then cold smoke it for a few hours in my smoker. Cold-smoking can be tricky....my Smokin Tex sells a thermal plate to keep the heat down..and I put a huge bowl of icecubes on top of it and the salmon way above it. I smoke at under 175....and sometimes have to do a second round, as the wood doesn't burn enough to create enough smoke at that temp. But, it is a great thing when it turns out right.....

Last month, my thermostat got screwed up..and....the smoke was too hot...and...it cooked on the outside and not on the inside. People liked it, but the texture was weird. I ordered a new thermostat knob.

The pros who smoke "lox" use a different system of keeping the smoke cool.....and smoke for a day or two....I got my ideas from a smokehouse in Maine I loved. They retired and closed, but I tracked the owners down a few years back.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#160 Post by J a y H a c k » July 12th, 2011, 7:26 am

We did a whole brisket, trimmed of fat, for 9 hours in the BGE. It got too hot for too long and was too dry, but no one pays enough attention when I have to go to work and all they have to do is check the thermometer. To soften and rehydrate, I heated it up slow covered with 5 pounds of caramelized onions and a moist mole sauce. The moisture softed up the overcooking and I think it tasted great. Got a lot of complements.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#161 Post by Mark.Ricca » July 12th, 2011, 8:12 am

That's why I finished mine in the oven on Sunday. The initial two and a half hours over the hickory was plenty enough smoke flavor. I covered it with foil after I doused it with beer and cooked it another 3+ hours @ 225F in the oven.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#162 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 12th, 2011, 8:34 am

I just did a 10.5 full brisket for 13 hours at 225....great, as usual. I always leave as much fat on for the cooking/basting. Just curious whether Jay trimmed the whole brisket's fat? And, how using a flat cut can really turn out juicy and smoked. I could see either or...but....I think a "flat" brisket is really a different "animal" in the context of "smoking" from a full brisket.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#163 Post by Robert.Fleming » July 12th, 2011, 8:49 am

Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow wrote: Just curious ... how using a flat cut can really turn out juicy ....
The flat has less fat but much more connective tissue - thus more collagen to convert into gelatin.
Last edited by Robert.Fleming on July 12th, 2011, 9:52 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#164 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 12th, 2011, 9:26 am

but you have to cook it differently, no? like a lot less time....my question is , by using the same long and slow method as for the whole brisket, can you have a tender "flat cut" stand alone? Will the extra collagen save the day?

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#165 Post by Robert.Fleming » July 12th, 2011, 10:16 am

Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow wrote:but you have to cook it differently, no? like a lot less time....
Actually, the flat takes longer than the point to get tender.
Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow wrote:my question is , by using the same long and slow method as for the whole brisket, can you have a tender "flat cut" stand alone? Will the extra collagen save the day?
I have only cooked packer cuts (i.e., whole briskets, flat and point), never the flat by itself. So I can't speak from personal experience. But I remember reading, recently, about a Texas joint that has won all kinds of awards for its brisket - and cooks only flats. That stands out in my memory because the 'conventional wisdom,' reflected in many posts here, is to cook the whole brisket, not the flat.

The last time I cooked a brisket, the point was ready (per the 'fork test') at 11 hours, but it took another 3.5 hours before the flat was ready. The flat was plenty juicy; I don't see how that would have been different had it been cooked alone.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#166 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 12th, 2011, 11:00 am

Well, in theory the point's fat basted the flat.

I use flat all the time ..or my wife does...as pot roast.

Interesting. And you're right...I used a thermometer yesterday. The flat was 20+ degrees lower temp than the point when I first check it. I like to cook them to 195....but stopped when the point got there, to make sure to not overcook the flat. I didn't taste it, as I cryovaced it to take with us to Maine this week.

If you find a link to that Texas place, I'd be interested in reading about it, and its methods.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#167 Post by Frank Hronek » July 13th, 2011, 2:25 pm

Robert.Fleming wrote:
Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow wrote:but you have to cook it differently, no? like a lot less time....
Actually, the flat takes longer than the point to get tender.
Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow wrote:my question is , by using the same long and slow method as for the whole brisket, can you have a tender "flat cut" stand alone? Will the extra collagen save the day?
I have only cooked packer cuts (i.e., whole briskets, flat and point), never the flat by itself. So I can't speak from personal experience. But I remember reading, recently, about a Texas joint that has won all kinds of awards for its brisket - and cooks only flats. That stands out in my memory because the 'conventional wisdom,' reflected in many posts here, is to cook the whole brisket, not the flat.

The last time I cooked a brisket, the point was ready (per the 'fork test') at 11 hours, but it took another 3.5 hours before the flat was ready. The flat was plenty juicy; I don't see how that would have been different had it been cooked alone.
Robert, good info. I learned some things. Thank you.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#168 Post by Tran Bronstein » July 13th, 2011, 3:51 pm

I have smoked with hickory, mesquite, pecan, maple, plain oak, whiskey barrel oak, cherry, apple and peach woods and have to agree that there are definitely nuances with the different types of wood. I find hickory to be the most well-rounded in flavor, mesquite the boldest and spiciest, oak and maple are very mellow, and fruit woods tend to be tangier.

Because of these nuances, I really like mixing my woods now when I smoke. I currently use two different smoking wood cuvees (Hey, we are on the Wine Berserkers board after all). My first mix is hickory, cherry, and whiskey oak wood and my second mix is maple, cherry and pecan wood.

The only wood I won't mix is mesquite because I find it so strong that even minute amounts will overpower the other woods in the final product. Best just to use it by itself in sparing quantities.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#169 Post by Tran Bronstein » July 13th, 2011, 3:58 pm

A couple of BTWs I forgot to mention: Bill, those pics of your briskets and Kielbasa were awesome. And since people have mentioned the cold smoker with salmon, if you do end up getting may I strongly also recommend cold smoking CHEESE. I guarantee once you smoke an aged cheddar and a brie or camembert cheese, you won't go back to the regular versions of those cheeses ever again. Delicious stuff.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#170 Post by william partmann » July 14th, 2011, 7:23 pm

Tran, I agree with the mix wood concept. I use oak as a base and then apple or cherry depending on the meat. I also have some apricot and persimmon that I will use later this year as an experiment. Enjoy.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#171 Post by Tran Bronstein » July 15th, 2011, 9:17 pm

This thread is bringing up some great childhood memories. Being raised Jewish, of course my family had smoked salmon and smoked meat all the time. I was always mystified as a kid on two things: how come beef was brown when cooked through normally but bright red when smoked? And how could smoked salmon not cook all the way through if smoke was hot? So eventually I took it upon myself to find out.
In regards to smoking salmon, I once visited a fish smokehouse when my family was visiting family in New York because I just had to find out for myself how on earth they could smoke it without actually cooking it. Don't remember the name of the place, I was just a kid back then but here are the tips they gave me, filtered through now somewhat knowledgeable older foodie eyes:

* The term cold-smoked salmon is misleading. There's nothing cold about the process itself. In fact, they told me it actually "cooks" at extremely low temperatures of between 70 and 80 degrees Farenheit. That's between 21 and 27 celsius for us Canucks -- the temperature of a good hot summer day. I'll come back to this in a second. THey told me they did this for about 5 hours or so.

* Try getting your smoker to go that low. You can't. Heck, even they couldn't. Their secret was that the wood burning oven is in a SEPARATE ROOM from the salmon curing room and the smoke is fed in through industrial vent piping.

* Because the thermostat reader was inside the cold room itself, it does take into account the heat of the incoming smoke and the entire room is regulated to the right temperature. The smoke is also sent out via exhaust as well just as we have to let smoke escape our hot bbq smokers.

* That separate room also has several fans that keep the smoke blowing around the fish which kind of just... laid there on trays.

I remember being so surprised as a kid as to how little work it actually took to make the stuff. In fact, still skeptical that the temperature they told me could actually "cook" the fish, I did an experiment when I got back home which was to actually take a small piece of fish and place it outside on a hot summer day in a clear pyrex container. Sure enough, it actually cooked. Obviously it didn't taste like smoked salmon but the texture was dead on.

Because of this memory indelibly ingrained into my head, I have never as an adult attempted to cold smoke fish because without the separation of the smoke generator from the food chamber there's just no way to perfectly recreate the stuff. However, I also had the benefit of knowing since a kid what the correct temperature for cold smoking was which I don't think many people are aware of.

If you can somehow generate the smoke yet keep everything down to 70 to 80 degrees F, I think you'll be able to pull it off. BTW, thanks to the magic of modern technology I have found videos on YouTube on cold smoking salmon that verify my childhood memories of both the correct temperature and the separate smoke generator/food chamber process. One of them is oddly enough an episode of Good Eats (one of my favorite Food Network shows) where Alton Brown does in fact attach a smoke generator setup to a separate chamber he makes out of an old metal locker of all things.

In regards to the smoked meat, it was pretty much exactly the same thing -- the temperature was just a hell of a lot hotter. LOL. I still didn't understand the pink color, though, until as an adult I learned that smoking gives that pink "ring" to meat and I studied the chemical processes behind it. All that's happened with smoked meat is that it's been so thoroughly smoked the the meat has turned pink through and through.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#172 Post by Bob Wood » July 15th, 2011, 10:30 pm

Nice, Tran. Nice+, even.

Alton once smoked ribs in a locker setup, too. And we have a guy here who sells smoked salmon of all kinds at the downtown farmers market who gave me essentially the same parameters for lox as you outlined.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#173 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 16th, 2011, 6:48 am

There are ways to simulate the "cold smoking", Tran. But, as you say, the best way is to have the heat in a separate room and let it go for 24 hours.

But, with my Smokin Tex they sold a metal heat barrier and instructed to put a huge bowl of icecubes on it. The key is to get the wood just hot enough to smolder/smoke, at abouit $150, to get to the 100 degree level. It usually works just fine; easier to do in the winter, though.

I am not a fan of mixing woods, FWIW. I use maple for fish cold-smoking and pecan for beef and either pecan or hickory for pork and cherry or apple for chicken. I find,after lots of experimenting, each marries well with differnent things. Blending..is fun..but...not worth the effort in my experience, and impossible to really re-create.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#174 Post by gregolson » July 19th, 2011, 8:23 am

I am smoking a couple of Boston Butts for a dinner on Saturday. I'd like to smoke them the day before so that I can partake in the festivities (including a bike ride) throughout the day on Saturday. If I do them the day before, what's the best way to deal with them after they are done? Can I wrap them and leave them in the cooler for a short period to keep moist and then stick them in the refrigerator overnight and then heat them up in the oven low and slow the next day? Should I douse them with the vinegar sauce to hold them or wait to do that after I reheat them? Or, is this just a bad idea to do them the day before?

Any thoughts and help will be appreciated.

Thanks.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#175 Post by Richard Lamb » July 20th, 2011, 6:08 pm

I'm a big fan of smoked fish. I use a brine with soy, ginger and cayenne. To me, the secret of keeping the fish moist, is to make sure the surface of the fish is DRY before in goes into the smoker. I put mine on a rack in front of a fan for a couple of hours. Once the surface changes from shiny, to sticky, to a uniform dry glazed, it's into the smoker for 1 hour for trout or 2 hours for salmon. After smoking, a couple of days at least in a vacuum bag in the fridge. Good stuff!

I've recently bought a new ceramic smoker from Costco, a Kamado style Precision grill. It seems to do a fine job of smoking at 200 to 250, but I've noticed that since I like to smoke fish between 180 and 200, generating smoke in the ceramic cooker at this temperature is tough. Any of you ceramic smokers have any hints?

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#176 Post by Stuart BeauneHead Niemtzow » July 21st, 2011, 5:45 am

gregolson wrote:I am smoking a couple of Boston Butts for a dinner on Saturday. I'd like to smoke them the day before so that I can partake in the festivities (including a bike ride) throughout the day on Saturday. If I do them the day before, what's the best way to deal with them after they are done? Can I wrap them and leave them in the cooler for a short period to keep moist and then stick them in the refrigerator overnight and then heat them up in the oven low and slow the next day? Should I douse them with the vinegar sauce to hold them or wait to do that after I reheat them? Or, is this just a bad idea to do them the day before?

Any thoughts and help will be appreciated.

Thanks.
Greg
Greg...what I do (and I did this recently) with the butts is to cook them to a temp just below what I want and then wrap and refrigerate. And, then do what you suggest...without any wrap...until just heated through....I wouldn't do anything about saucing them before getting ready to eat them. You're just trying to simulate what you would have done without the "festivities", IMO.
It should work well.....I'd heat at about 250-275....which is what you're doing here..not really cooking again.

good luck. report back.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#177 Post by gregolson » July 21st, 2011, 7:30 am

Stuart-

Thanks. That sounds like a good plan. I'll let you know how they turn out.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#178 Post by gregolson » July 25th, 2011, 12:56 pm

Pulled pork was fantastic. Rave reviews from all 20 something guests. The Boston Butts were rubbed, wrapped and refrigerated the night before. More rub the next morning, and on to the smoker with hardwood lump charcoal. I smoked it for 12 hours at 235ish to about 195, using hickory chunks for the first 5 hours and spritzing with a vinegar/pepper sauce every hour. I pulled the pork hot and refrigerated it overnight. Next day, I reheated the pork in the oven at 250, spritzing with apple juice from time to time. Served dipped in vinegar sauce, topped with North Carolina slaw, and sandwiched between the basic white bun. So good, I may have to do it again next week!

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#179 Post by Mark.Ricca » July 25th, 2011, 8:43 pm

Did this on the grill on Sunday.

Two organic fryers backbone and ribcage cut out but left whole. Smoked low over hickory with the sauce recipe from the article.

Damn good eatin'.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#180 Post by Jay Allen » August 1st, 2011, 12:44 pm

Got a Webber Smokey Mountain 22.5" for Father's Day so I've been playing around with it. I got the smoker to pretty much stay between 245-255 degrees for 4 hours. I'm getting the hang of it. My family was impressed with dinner.

Instead of the standard pork ribs, my local butcher got me a 5lb lamb rib section. First time I've ever had lamb ribs. The meat was tasty without being gamey at all. Lamb has a ton of fat so the ribs were moist and flavorful.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#181 Post by G. Bienstock » August 6th, 2011, 8:53 pm

I just got a charcoal Brinkman smoker as an incentive from work. My weekend schedule is pretty busy and I hope to lght it up in 2 weeks. Probably a Kosher chicken to start with.

I picked some almond wood chips at the farmers market this week. What characteristics does almond wood have? Before any smartasses reply, do not say nutty.

On my Weber I like a blend of primarily pecan, cherry and hickory with varying doses of apple, winebarrel oak and maple.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#182 Post by Benjamin Sullivan DNA » September 17th, 2011, 6:11 pm

I just smoked a chicken using this rub:

2-Tsp Paprika
1-Tsp Cayenne
2-Tsp Garlic Powder
1-Tsp Mustard Powder
1-Tbsp Chilli Powder
1-Tsp Salt
1/4-Tbsp Cumin
1-Tsp Onion Powder
Here it is the chicken going into the smoker:
Image
And the smoker, smoking away:
Image
Meanwhile, I am stuffing some Zucchini flowers with goat cheese:
Image
Image
Image
And perfectly done after 5 hours:
Image
Image
And wrapped in foil and a towel and into the cooler for an hour:
Image
And the finished product:
Image
Drinking some 07 Blue Mountain Pinot with my meal.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#183 Post by Bob Wood » September 17th, 2011, 7:46 pm

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#184 Post by m@rkj@hnke » September 23rd, 2011, 7:56 am

Great pics Benjamin! I love the FTC (foil, towel, cooler) and think it plays a large part in letting meats rest, and keeping them tender. Many will disagree, but what is crazy to me is hot streaming hot my briskets will come out of the cooler 4 hours later. Good stuff!
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#185 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » June 9th, 2012, 3:05 pm

I went to the Chinese market today and picked up a 7.5lb bone-in Boston butt for smoking. At first I was going to do a multi-spice dry rub. After rereading this thread a bit I pulled back and am going the Carolina-esque way. I've done a dry rub of salt, turbinado sugar & chili powder. If it throws a lot of liquid I'll dry it out and redo tomorrow AM. It's going to get smoked on Monday with either apple, cherry, or sugar maple wood. I will use a white vinegar/pepper flakes/apple juice solution on it while smoking.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#186 Post by M. Sai » June 15th, 2012, 10:57 am

I switched to using old barrel staves and vine wood exclusively for the smoker this year with great results. The barrel staves are great - light quickly, but burn slowly and can be added in small pieces to control temperature. A small amount of old vine wood adds some sweetness. Thankfully barrel staves are easy to come by around here - I may never use anything else!
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#187 Post by G. Bienstock » June 15th, 2012, 6:38 pm

I grilled a leg of lamb recently and used vine prunings on top of the lump. It added a good flavor.

Tomorrow is my first turkey on the smoker.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#188 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » June 15th, 2012, 7:19 pm

Wagyu Brisket, Berskshire Shoulder and various sausages on the 4th here in DFW if anyone can make it....
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#189 Post by G. Bienstock » June 17th, 2012, 4:41 pm

The dry rubbed turkey turned out great. I used a blend of mainly maple, cherry, apple and pecan with lesser amounts of alder and almond and just a midge of mesquite.

Pork shoulder is next. Mark Hudson turned me onto the vinegar based Wilber's Barbecue Sauce with pulled pork. A great match from a thin non sweetened and tomato free sauce that really makes the meat blossom.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#190 Post by Tran Bronstein » June 19th, 2012, 9:06 am

Does anyone else here smoke their summer vegetables as well on their smoker? This past weekend I smoked several artisanal sausages, a beer can chicken... and several thick slices of yellow zucchini and sweet Vidalia onion along with some green asparagus stalks.

After the veggies were done smoking, I diced them into large chunks and dressed them with a homemade olive oil, balsamic vinegar and mixed dried herb vinaigrette and served over greens with fresh cherry tomatoes as the side salad to the meal. Deelish.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#191 Post by Robert.Fleming » June 19th, 2012, 9:25 am

G. Bienstock wrote:... Wilber's Barbecue Sauce with pulled pork. A great match from a thin non sweetened and tomato free sauce that really makes the meat blossom.
If you're talking Wilber's in Goldsboro NC, this will make a reasonable approximation of the sauce:

1 c white vinegar
1 tb red pepper flakes
1 c apple cider vinegar
1 tb Tabasco
1 tb sugar
1 t black pepper

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#192 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » June 19th, 2012, 6:46 pm

Thanks again for the sauce recipe, Bob. I definitely went a little bit overboard on the pepper flakes with that last butt.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#193 Post by G. Bienstock » June 19th, 2012, 9:05 pm

Robert.Fleming wrote:
G. Bienstock wrote:... Wilber's Barbecue Sauce with pulled pork. A great match from a thin non sweetened and tomato free sauce that really makes the meat blossom.
If you're talking Wilber's in Goldsboro NC, this will make a reasonable approximation of the sauce:

1 c white vinegar
1 tb red pepper flakes
1 c apple cider vinegar
1 tb Tabasco
1 tb sugar
1 t black pepper
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#194 Post by G. Bienstock » June 25th, 2012, 9:29 pm

What are the pros and cons of mopping pork butts?

What is the best way to have moist meat and a good bark? Injection? My smoker does have a water pan.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#195 Post by Kent Zimmerman » June 26th, 2012, 7:22 am

G. Bienstock wrote:What are the pros and cons of mopping pork butts?

What is the best way to have moist meat and a good bark? Injection? My smoker does have a water pan.
You'll likely get different opinions here, but I don't mop anything that I'm smoking low and slow. It does nothing to add "moisture" to the meat, and you run the risk of losing some of the rub if you do it too soon. There's also the issue that you lose heat in your cooking chamber every time you lift the lid to mop. If you must mop (or spritz), do it as a way to add some additional flavor to the exterior and never touch it until after the first 3-4 hours and you start to see the bark develop,

In my book, the ideal combination of moist meat and a nice bark comes from cooking at a steady low temperature. The internal fat will work it's magic on the meat.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#196 Post by gene keenan » June 27th, 2012, 1:26 pm

Kent Zimmerman wrote:
G. Bienstock wrote:What are the pros and cons of mopping pork butts?

What is the best way to have moist meat and a good bark? Injection? My smoker does have a water pan.
You'll likely get different opinions here, but I don't mop anything that I'm smoking low and slow. It does nothing to add "moisture" to the meat, and you run the risk of losing some of the rub if you do it too soon. There's also the issue that you lose heat in your cooking chamber every time you lift the lid to mop. If you must mop (or spritz), do it as a way to add some additional flavor to the exterior and never touch it until after the first 3-4 hours and you start to see the bark develop,

In my book, the ideal combination of moist meat and a nice bark comes from cooking at a steady low temperature. The internal fat will work it's magic on the meat.
I agree with this method. I pretty much never open my smoker until I am getting close to the end.

I just replaced a broken part in my smoker in anticipation for the coming week. Not sure what I will be throwing in there but I am thinking a mixed grill of brisket, pork but and whole chickens.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#197 Post by Bill Tex Landreth » June 27th, 2012, 1:37 pm

A couple of members here have sent me PMs in regard to smoking critters. The following is what I put together for them:

I don’t make any claim to this being regionally correct for any BBQ competition, just the fact that the results work for me and my expectations of pulled pork shoulder. The rub and mop sauce recipes below have served well for shoulder/butt as well as spare and back ribs. I like sugar for pork as I feel it adds to the overall flavor profile and bark creation. When I do beef on the smoker (any cut), I do NOT have any sugar. Of course, you can tweak to your tastes for salty, sweet, acid, etc…

Pork Rub
4 Parts Sugar (I am a big fan of evaporated cane juice or even fine grained turbinado, but not white sugar)
2 Parts Salt (I like the bulk sea salt that Costco has vs. table or kosher. IMO, the crystal structure adheres to the meat better and the residual moisture in the salt helps “suck” in the seasoning to the rub)
1 Part Paprika (This is more for color than for any imparted flavor)
1 Part Seasoning Blend (This is your secret blend of spices to make your rub unique)

Seasoning Blend (Play with ingredients to customize your rub)
1 Part Telicherry Peppercorn, Finely Ground
1 Part Yellow Mustard Seed, Finely Ground
1 Part Szechuan Peppercorn, Finely Ground
1 Part Granulated Garlic
1 Part Onion Powder
1 Part Dried Thyme

Mop Sauce
2 Cups Apple Cider
1 Cup Apple Cider Vinegar
¼ Cup Sugar, as stated above
2 TBS Sea Salt
2 TBS Worcestershire Sauce
1 Cup Finely Chopped Yellow Sweet Onion
1 TBS Red Chile Flakes or Hot Sauce of your choice to get desired heat level

1. In a spice grinder or mortar and pestle, combine all the seasoning blend ingredients and grind to a fine powder.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients for the actual rub. When I do this, I usually make enough for the summer and just store in an airtight Mason jar.
3. The night before you plan on smoking the shoulder, apply a very generous amount of the rub making sure to coat every inch of the surface. Place the shoulder on a cooling rack over a rimmed baking sheet. Put the sheet and shoulder in the refrigerator overnight. Some liquid will be drawn out of the shoulder, but that is an indication of the salt and sugar penetrating the meat.
4. The morning of the smoke, get your rig going with your desired wood of choice (for pork I like a 50/50 mix of hickory and apple).
5. When your rig is at 225 deg F, remove the shoulder directly from the fridge and place in smoker. Lots of folks have been very vocal that the cold meat will absorb smoke better and produce a thicker and more defined smoke ring (looks good, but no real impact on flavor).
6. While the piggy begins smoking, make your mop sauce. Combine all ingredients in a covered sauce pan and bring to a rolling boil. Once the liquid is boiling, turn off the heat and let everything steep until it reaches room temp. Strain the mixture to remove the onion and chile flakes.
7. Continue smoking on your rig for four hours untouched. This allows the bark to start its formation and any application of the mop at this point will wash off the rub.
8. At the four hour mark, check the surface of the shoulder. If it is no longer tacky/sticky and has a “hardness” to it, you can start the mopping. I use a silicone brush and just paint the entire surface every 15 to 30 minutes up until I pull it off the rig.
9. Shoot for a deep internal temperature of 195 deg F. This is generally 1 hour per pound of shoulder, but could be +/-, so plan accordingly for some extra time when shooting for service. Once this temp has been reached, remove from the smoker and wrap in aluminum foil for an hour to let everything equilibrate. You can hold it in an insulated cooler for an extended period if need be.
10. At time of service, unwrap the shoulder and shred as you see fit. At this point, if you did everything correctly, you should not need any sauce. If you need some moisture, a little splash of the mop sauce should work very well.


Notes:
1. Get a non-enhanced shoulder, bone-in. Do not get anything that has been seasoned, “packaged in a solution” or otherwise adulterated.
2. If you have access to a large syringe and large bore needle (you can buy these specifically for this) you can always inject the shoulder with a few ounces of the mop sauce for added flavor.
3. When the fat and connective tissue starts to break down at the 150 degree mark, the temperature will plateau for a considerable amount of time. This is normal and expected, so don’t worry if the temp does not move for a couple hours.
4. Everything that I have read has said that large hunks of meat, pork and beef, will only take smoke for a maximum of six hours after that you run the risk of building up nasty and bitter compounds on the meat if your fire isn’t clean and burning well. To hedge against this and cheat, I will remove the critter at this point and place into a 225 degree F oven and let it ride out the cooking indoors. This is easier for me as I don’t have to run outside every 30 minutes in 100 degree TX heat in the summer. Just something to think about.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#198 Post by Brent C l a y t o n » June 27th, 2012, 2:31 pm

Those cooking tips will be helpful, there were definitely some things I didn't do the last time.
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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#199 Post by Sean Devaney » June 27th, 2012, 4:07 pm

Thanks for sharing Tex.

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Re: The Smoker Thread - recipes, techniques, ideas

#200 Post by Paul Bacino » June 28th, 2012, 4:15 am

Anyone familiar with these products--

http://pittsandspitts.com/SmokerPits.htm !! You can cold smoke too!!

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