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-   -   BBQ is Just like Brewing (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f172/bbq-just-like-brewing-232851/)

cook1969 03-16-2011 08:55 PM

BBQ is Just like Brewing
Ive been surfing this site for some time and just now saw the meat smoking thread. TO make BBQ you can be every bit as meticulous as brewing beer. At minimum edible bbq should take the same amount of work as a partial mash extract brew.

When you are BBQ'ing just as with brewing, temprature is everything. Alot of people use a thermometer in their cooking chamber but this takes a reading at one point in the cooking chamber. A smoker can be tuned just like a brew rig can to give you much better performance. If you use a wal mart smoker or the like they usually have a giant variation in temps inside the cooking side. If you really want a good consistent cooker then make the top of your opening even with your smoke stack. Its easy to buy some of that hotwater heater exhaust stack at lowes and slide it on inside where the stack is and that way your stack is even with your food grate. If you dont have a way of making the opening to the firebox level with the food grate, at least stick a small loaf pan on the grate all the way to the side with the fire box on it. This will cause the heat to flow through the cooking side better and draw the smoke straight across the meat.
I have an infrared thermo and i can shoot the different spots in the cooking side and see where the temps are compare with what they read on your thermo on your lid or whatever. If you dont have one simply take one of your meat thermometers and stick it in a wine cork and sit on your food grate. This keeps the thermo from toucing the metal of the grate and will give you an accurate reading. This way you can move it aorund and learn/tune your cooker up. Make different adjustments and see how it affects your temp in different places.
The main rule is that any adjustment you make to your dampers, it will take 15 minutes to affect the temp in your cook side. Everytime you open the lid you extend your cook time by 15-20 minutes. So dont open the lid till its time to pull your meat out.
You DO NOT WANT HEAVY SMOKE EVER. Heavy smoke will build up creosote! At any given time you should have a slight blue plume coming out of your stack. So play around with with how much wood you need to get the heat you need and the smoke you need. Just as with your brew rig, play around before you actually get to going and learn how YOUR rig works. You dont need any more than about three sticks of wood in a wal mart type smoker, and only one if you have some charcoal in there.

BBQ, like brewing beer should take at least 6 or 8 hours if not more.

shoot for around 200 degrees and you will be fine because you will get dips and spikes.

Learn Temprature control.

jetmechG550 03-17-2011 03:29 AM

HAHA, BBQ is what got my interest in home brew going. I'm an Egghead and I've been told on many occasions by many different people that I have made some killer Q, so I thought why not add to some tasty eats with some of my own tasty beverages. I've got my first brew in the fermenter right now and I'm thinking I planned it perfect that it will be ready with a nice kick off to the outdoor season. I cook year round as long as there's not enough ice to keep from opening the lid on my Egg but we can't hang outdoors year round here.

cook1969 03-17-2011 03:37 AM

I have been to competitions and seen the green egg make some award winning Que. They are awesome. I've heard nasty stories of what happens when they are dropped though! Not a cheap mistake to make! Good luck on your brew and your que!

jetmechG550 03-17-2011 04:12 AM

Thank you and to you as well! My egg doesn't travel but I am thinking of getting a small for camping. This is my setup just before I finished it out.

Sawdustguy 03-18-2011 07:34 PM

We compete in BBQ for money. We can not afford fluctuating temperatures. We use a Spicewine insulated smoker, charcoal basket and a BBQ Guru. We expect our temperatures to be within a half of a degree for whatever we need. We cook the Brisket and Butt at 230*, Ribs at 275* and Chicken at 350*. The only time we open the cooker is to baste the Brisket and Butt, or to layer the flavors on the Ribs and Chicken. Remember if you're lookin, you ain't cookin. We use Cherry and Apple wood chunks. In the picture below notice the is no visable smoke, just sweet blue almost invisible smoke.





jetmechG550 03-18-2011 11:36 PM

I use the Stoker for all my low and slows, lid doesn't open until the alarm goes off at target temp.

Sawdustguy 03-18-2011 11:42 PM

Nothing wrong with the stoker. I like the idea of wireless networking one to a laptop.


Originally Posted by jetmechG550 (Post 2750702)
lid doesn't open until the alarm goes off at target temp.

Brilliant minds think alike.:mug:

jetmechG550 03-18-2011 11:50 PM

It's so nice not to worry about anything but drinking a beer while the stoker/guru slaves away right? :)

Stokerlog by Amir is pretty nice, much more than the interface with the Stoker, especially so you can take a look back and see what happened while you were sleeping.

dfess1 03-30-2011 07:47 PM

I'll be procuring a Stoker shortly. In the process of designing (and next month fabricating) a Stumps clone (little larger than a stretch) mounted on a trailer. Looking to also make a single tier brew stand double as a 3 burner stove when being carted about. trying to figure out now how to mount it to the trailer so that it is easily removable.

cook1969 03-30-2011 08:55 PM

I actually set my single tier stand up to be used as a 3 burner stove for BBQ as well. I made my burners on tracks So I could slide them with the idea I could move two close together and put a big flat griddle on them and use the other for beans. I bought a bracket for the march pump so I can pull it off when the rig is being used for BBQ.

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