A barbecue adventure, the saga unfolds.

Discussion in 'Hangar Talk' started by Sac Arrow, Jan 8, 2022.

  1. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well to be clear, I'm using the pan - I just don't have water in it. So far, I don't think the absence of water has much of an effect on the heat. It's held at a fairly steady 225 degrees for the last couple hours and I just threw some more coals on. If I open the throttle much more, it's going to burn through charcoal way too fast.

    I did have the wherewithal to make a charcoal run to the store before I started laying in to the ceremonial wine.
     
  2. Mahneuvers

    Mahneuvers Line Up and Wait

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    Are you then just using the water pan as a heat diffuser? In my rig, I use a heavy duty pizza pan with holes drilled though it as a heat diffuser. That way, heat is still diffused but fat still makes it to the heat source for atomization.
     
  3. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I'm just using it as a heat diffuser. I get your point on the drippings hitting the coals, but I'll just see how this works. I mean, the pan is obviously getting pretty hot, and I'm sure it is atomizing the fat and drippings somewhat.
     
  4. Mahneuvers

    Mahneuvers Line Up and Wait

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    Gotcha. This is a a good experiment. Fat atomizing in coals versus fat atomizing on a hot surface. Maybe it doesn't matter. However, some swear gas grills don't produce the same flavor profile as charcoal grills for just this reason.
     
  5. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Oh me too, I use a charcoal grill as well. It sounds like you are going for the grilled flavor in a smoke environment. Which, if you can pull it off, sounds pretty damn good to me.
     
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  6. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Judging by the crackling sounds and the smell wafting from the smoker, I think it is going to turn out just right. There is a nice bark forming on the ribs, and temps have been holding very nicely. From here on out, I think I will just let the burn go until it doesn't, and then go from there. This is definitely working out better so far than the last two attempts. But I won't really know until I pull them off and cut them up.
     
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  7. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    0A725C65-524F-458E-BBBE-092F7C1297BE.jpeg
    In terms of flavor, definitely the best so far. Slightly dry but not bad. My eyes were hungrier than my stomach. Major leftovers.
     
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  8. GaryM

    GaryM Pattern Altitude

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    I'm back from the Brisket Bootcamp! https://mdbbqservices.com/wp-content/uploads/2022/02/2022-Bootcamp-Dates-Overview.jpg It was a great experience, highly recommended!

    We got started at 6 am. They had 23 smokers available, from Weber Kettles used for indirect cooking, pellet smokers, cabinets, Big Green Eggs, a WSM, big stick burning offset smokers and a couple of pig roasters. One student had dropped out, so we had 19 students, and 22 briskets, each about 14 lbs. I opted to use a Backwoods cabinet smoker, which worked out very well, burning lump charcoal with apple wood chunks. A local butcher took us through the anatomy of a brisket and gave tips for trimming one, then a competition cook took us through another one with more of an emphasis on trimming for competition.
    Each student received a different premixed injection and paired base rub (the base rubs, SPGs, are all variations on salt, pepper, garlic). We then picked an overlay rub. Briskets were prepped by 8:30 am, and on the smoker grates by 9:30. This was the 'hot and fast' class, so smoker temps were in the 275-325F range, depending on the smoker. Beer was flowing by 8 am, keeping the cooks cool.

    Downtime, both morning and afternoon, was spent cooking brunch and lunch. We made omelette cups, french toast roll-ups, biscuits and gravy, sausage queso, quesadillas, cider-braised kielbasa, and probably some things I've forgotten. Just past noon, the briskets were pulled when they hit 160 or so, and wrapped in foil to which nearly a quart of au jus plus leftover injection was added. Back onto the smokers for a couple more hours. When tender, they were pulled to rest wrapped in towels for 45 minutes, then the points were separated to make burnt ends, cubed, tossed in sauce, and put in foil pans to return to the smokers for half an hour to set the sauce. Half an hour after that, the flats were sliced, and returned to the juice in the foil to stay moist.

    Both burnt ends and sliced flat were the best I've ever made, and the brisket was done in just 6 hours! I came home with nearly all of the brisket, and all the gimmes from the class; knife, hot gloves, injector. Plus, I got to sample probably 20 rubs and a dozen sauces...before heading into the extensive shop to buy my favorites. The picture of the shop's sauce room only shows about 1/3 of their inventory.

    I've attached a few photos.
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  9. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Looks like a lot of fun!
     
  10. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    This will be attempt #4. This time I'm going with spare ribs, and I'm using McCormick Memphis Pit BBQ dry rub. No water in the tub, and starting out with more charcoal than last time. So far the temperature seems to be holding better. I'm only at about 2 1/2 hours so far.
     
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  11. Mahneuvers

    Mahneuvers Line Up and Wait

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    Your 6/4 "attempt" looked pretty darned good to me!! Is it possible you're being too hard on yourself?

    If you feel you're struggling, I would think St. Louis cut ribs would be more forgiving regarding moisture.
     
  12. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Friday I’m firing up the smoker. My nephew is traveling with his girlfriend making their “meet the families” tour. He asked for bbq, and he’s going to get it good and hard. Ribs, brisket, pork butt, and chicken (the big 4), and I’m going to do sausage and poppers. I also have a beef tenderloin roast in the freezer I’ll cook for sandwiches for me later. That’s all for about 9 adults and a couple kids. I’m trying to be the good uncle.
     
  13. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Well they are St. Louis cut. So far, the sizzling on the drip pan has ceased, which to me indicates that enough fat has rendered off the ribs to boil in a pool. Which is good, as these ribs are very fatty.
     
  14. Dave Theisen

    Dave Theisen En-Route PoA Supporter

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    Did you use any of the peppers you’ve been growing? :)
     
  15. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    Hate to break in, but I’ve got an on-topic question. I use a gravity fed smoker and have been mixing charcoal (briquette) with dried wood chunks. Is there any particular reason to go, say, all mesquite charcoal chunks instead of mixing in the dried mesquite with the briquettes?

    The mix tends to burn at a pretty stable temp right now, so I end up with less wood flavor than I prefer. Seasoning? Check. Smoke? Check. Flavor? Tends to neutral.

    Sample smoke then finish with a sear.

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  16. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That looks really good.
     
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  17. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    5EEAE473-81FD-4830-8C45-55BF57AD853D.jpeg B406DB1A-8A04-48A6-9489-3B0B748E3B17.jpeg

    These were the best ribs yet. Very tender and meaty, and come off the bone not fall off it. Even my wife gave kudos and she does not like ribs
     
  18. TCABM

    TCABM En-Route

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    ^^Those do too.
     
  19. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Those look good, Sac. When the end of the rib bones start poking out like hillbilly teeth they are pretty much done. And you should look for meat that pulls off the bone vs falls off. Nice!
     
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  20. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I think that mesquite charcoal burns a little botter than “regular” briquettes that are probably mostly hickory. Hickory and mesquite generally add the heat, and you’ll get some flavor, too. But using something like hickory chunks can add too much hickory smoke and it tends to get bitter. I don’t think I’ve ever used mesquite chunks for smoke, so I can’t say much to that.

    If you make the switch to mesquite briquettes, make sure to account for that difference in burning temp.

    If you want more smoke flavor, maybe try a fruitwood like apple or cherry, and a hardwood like oak.
     
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  21. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Welp. Going to have a nice adult beverage, then head to bed to catch a couple hours of sleep before I have to get the fires started. Butts go on first at 5am, then the brisket a couple hours later. Ribs and chicken at noon and later. Dinner is at 6. I also have poppers and sausage, and a few other odds and ends for snacks and lunch.

    My nephew’s girlfriend better say ‘yes’ or she isn’t going to see anything like this again.

    edit: don’t try to zoom in on that pill bottle in the background, that’s the cat’s arthritis meds.


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  22. GaryM

    GaryM Pattern Altitude

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    That'll be awesome. If your nephew is trying half as hard to impress her as you are, she's as good as his.
    A full KCBS Master's competition entry for a family dinner! Wow.

    Have you been watching BBQ USA? Michael Simon's new BBQ show, showing one major competition each week, and following four teams from prep work right through the awards ceremony. It's quite good. This coming Monday's episode was shot at the NJ KnoQ Out competition in April; fairly close to me. I probably would have been entered but I was traveling that weekend. The Monday after is the last episode of Season 1, shot at Memphis in May.
     
  23. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I’ve heard of that show, but haven’t seen it. There are too many “junk” contest shows to sort through to find a good one that I usually just ignore all of them. I’ll need to check that one out.
     
  24. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    24998FAB-757C-49C9-B514-80F8A575D094.jpeg

    It’s time.
     
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  25. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    96FCFBBD-AD29-4A04-9C65-C53820FADB69.jpeg 661A58A7-6081-46CC-B3E9-5D619287FEEF.jpeg

    I just put the ribs on. Chicken will go on in a couple hours. Brisket is up to 160F right now, coming along nicely. When I wrap the brisket I will check the pork butt temps.
     
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  26. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    FE9D8A3E-48E1-4C74-B105-675E306A5FD3.jpeg

    So properly, these should be smoked, but the country style pork shoulder short ribs can be grilled too. I mean I did the smoker last week. They have been marinating in teriyaki most of the day. So I plan to grill them.
     
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  27. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    03FBE382-1F5C-4592-AC43-E60CE3F6CB94.jpeg
    Well here we are right now.
     
  28. Sac Arrow

    Sac Arrow Touchdown! Greaser!

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    really good
     
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  29. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I just realized I forgot to post an “after” picture yesterday.

    D5F0E562-ABFD-4527-8555-E7157298E74F.jpeg
     
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  30. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    Here’s a TV show review: Someone told me about “BBQ USA” on the Food Network. I recorded last night’s episode (while watching “Better Call Saul”) and just finished watching it a few minutes ago.

    I really liked it. The show follows a few BBQ teams through a contest and gives you a pretty good feeling for what’s involved. Plus, unlike way too many of these kinds of shows, the folks being followed are actually likable and really are the kind of people you’ll find doing these contests.

    I looked at the episode list and saw that episode #2 was recorded at a contest where I judged. I need to find that episode and see if I’m in it anywhere. They did have a camera inside the judging tent.

    During the opening sequence of the show I recognized a few teams and competitors.

    Check it out.
     
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  31. Dave Anderson

    Dave Anderson Pre-takeoff checklist

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    That is 5 miles from my house. When you do your test batch, give me a call and I'll come over to try them. I'm based out of KHGR Is that at the Greencastle location?
     
  32. Dave Anderson

    Dave Anderson Pre-takeoff checklist

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    Damn, I missed it
     
  33. GaryM

    GaryM Pattern Altitude

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    Yes, the boot camps are at their Greencastle location. Highly recommended. The trick, apparently, to getting in is to buy a gift certificate for the boot camp around the first of the year. Gift Certificate holders get to register early, once they open up registrations for the new year. Much better odds of getting the boot camp and the date you want.

    I live about 4 hours away, so not in that neighborhood often, but I'm glad I made the trip for this.
     
  34. Dave Theisen

    Dave Theisen En-Route PoA Supporter

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    The streaming service I use has it, but since I don’t know what you look like, I can’t tell you if I saw you or not. :)
     
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  35. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    I was the good lookin’ fella.
     
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  36. Matthew

    Matthew Touchdown! Greaser!

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    That was the contest I was judging and sitting next to the new chef at one of the top rated Q restaurants in KC. Really nice guy, and has quite a story of how he came from England and ended up here. He wouldn’t promise any of us he could catch us a free meal, though.