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Old 06-24-2011, 01:29 PM   #41
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The most southern contest we have ever competed in is the New Holland Summerfest in New Holland, PA. We cook alot in New England in NEBS (New England BBQ Society) land. We have done Harpoon (Harpoon Brewery) in Vermont, Rock and Ribfest at Budweiser in Merrimac, New Hampshire, The Hudson Valley Ribfest in New Paltz, New York etc. We were going to compete at Dover Downs this year but it was cancelled. This year is a light year for us only cooking three contests. In previous years we cooked 6 to 8 contests. We are looking forward to Battle of the BBQ Brethren held here in Manorville, NY in August. We won Reserve Grand Champion the first year this contest was held when it was in Sayville, NY. We have always cooked KCBS Sanctioned Contests but next year want to try our hand in an MBN contest with onsite and blind judging. Best of luck when you start competing. We jumped right in when we started and have been hooked ever since. If you ever have questions just shoot me a PM.

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Old 06-24-2011, 10:22 PM   #42
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So why would you buy a sack of wood chunks when you could buy a stack of wood? Do you burn wood chunks in your fireplace?
A $150 smoker is not going to maintain 225 for more than an hour and a half.

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Old 06-25-2011, 01:56 PM   #43
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So why would you buy a sack of wood chunks when you could buy a stack of wood? Do you burn wood chunks in your fireplace?
A $150 smoker is not going to maintain 225 for more than an hour and a half.
Easier to deal with and store and works just as well.
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Old 06-26-2011, 02:14 AM   #44
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Picked up today. I'm hoping to get it put together and seasoned this week so I can start cooking next weekend.

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Old 06-26-2011, 07:58 PM   #45
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So why would you buy a sack of wood chunks when you could buy a stack of wood? Do you burn wood chunks in your fireplace?
A $150 smoker is not going to maintain 225 for more than an hour and a half.
I don't think those $150 smokers are meant for logs. I think it will melt the flimsy metal on those cheap cookers.
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:20 AM   #46
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Put it together today. It definitely is a flimsy thing, and will only sate my appetite for so long. I'll probably upgrade next year once I get the hang of this or move to a bigger house.

Quick question. Tomorrow I am going to season it. Is there any reason why I shouldn't smoke some grains while I do this?

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Old 07-01-2011, 12:38 PM   #47
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Put it together today. It definitely is a flimsy thing, and will only sate my appetite for so long. I'll probably upgrade next year once I get the hang of this or move to a bigger house.

Quick question. Tomorrow I am going to season it. Is there any reason why I shouldn't smoke some grains while I do this?
Yes. When you season it, it's not at a smoking temperature. It should be pretty hot (as long as you can get it that hot and maintain it). I hose mine down in vegtable oil and bring it up to 350 for 4-5 hours. That would give you a nice roast, but not much smoke! Good luck with it! My best piece of advice would be to start with a pork butt. It's pretty forgiving cut of meat, and if you have trouble maintaining temp after a while, you can always foil it and throw it in the oven at a low temp to finish it off. As long as you get some smoke penetration in the beginning of the cook, you'll be good for a backyard bbq! Now, a real compitition, well I would assume most likely not But what do I know?
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Old 07-01-2011, 12:46 PM   #48
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I second what Dfess1 says. Pork butts are very forgiving. I would highly recommend you get yourself a good meat thermometer. You want to make sure you get that butt above 160*. I know the new rule is 140* but I think it is better to be safe. Uncooked pork is dangerous. You optimumly want the pork butt to get up to about 195* to 200* internal.

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Old 07-01-2011, 02:00 PM   #49
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Last night I bought a chimney starter, meat thermometer, mop and grilling wok. Can't wait to get started.

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Old 07-01-2011, 02:06 PM   #50
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nice, sounds like you are on your way to a great weekend! Smoking is alot like brewing. "Relax have a beer", or in your case "Relex, have a homebrew". The main thing you need to do is hit your food temp. That's pretty much it. Unlike beer it isn't totally about sanitation. Yeah, don't roll it around in the ash, or do other unseemly things to your food. But you don't have to be as anal about it like you do in beer. When I first started, i cooked to time. I realize now, that you should cook to temp. However long it took to get there is how long it took to get there. Lastly, if you're doing this for a party this weekend, especially with a butt (sometimes you'll get a "stall"), leave at least 4 more hours than you were planning on in the first place. Again, the cut is forgiving, so if it does stall, you can work with it. If it doesn't stall, just foil it, wrap it in towels (not the fancy ones, just the crappy ones. Don't need to piss off SWMBO) and put in a cooler, and it'll still be just as hot 4 hours later.

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