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Old 12-26-2012, 02:29 PM   #1
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Default New smoker, what to smoke?!

Just got my first smoker from the parents for christmas
Its a Brinkmann electric standup from there gourmet series. Cant find the exact model but it says on the box it can be converted a waist high grill.

My step father is a huge griller and hes helping me start up and get all the supplies i need.
My question is what is all of your favorite woods or procedures that make the best meat in you opinion. What cuts of meat should i start of with first. Im a huge carnvour and open to just about anything. Briskets my favorite but with a 12 hour smoke as my first i think i wanna make sure i dial the new system in before making a 5 pound briquet.

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Old 12-26-2012, 02:32 PM   #2
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I'd go with brisket, but of course I'm from Texas. Long, slow, and low for hours--the brisket, not the Texan.

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Old 12-26-2012, 02:33 PM   #3
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Start with a ham. Very easy to do and tasty. I smoke them until they reach 145. Then go for a Boston butt. They are kinda hard to screw up.

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Old 12-26-2012, 04:06 PM   #4
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Spare ribs are easy and pretty fast. Use the 3-2-1 method and give them some cherry and apple for smoke. Then as mentioned, do a butt for pulled pork.

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Old 12-26-2012, 04:12 PM   #5
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I would NOT tackle brisket 1st up.

Ribs are easy enough. I would actually say chicken wings. Very forgiving, GREAT smoked. Easy to handle. CHEAP if you smurf them up.

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Old 12-26-2012, 05:14 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by NivekD View Post
Spare ribs are easy and pretty fast. Use the 3-2-1 method and give them some cherry and apple for smoke. Then as mentioned, do a butt for pulled pork.
can you explain this 3-2-1 method?

sounds good guys thx! think ill be doing some chicken wings and ribs
Is a boston butt the cut they make pulled pork from?
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:22 PM   #7
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Quote:
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can you explain this 3-2-1 method?

sounds good guys thx! think ill be doing some chicken wings and ribs
Is a boston butt the cut they make pulled pork from?
3-2-1 means 3 hours in the smoker with smoke, then wrap in foil with a bit of apple juice for 2 hours in the smoker and then out of the foil for the last hour in the smoker. Keep the smoker temp at about 225-250.

Yes, pulled pork is best made with a Boston butt, some places simply call it a pork shoulder.

Chicken can be a little tricky based on how you want your skin, chicken skin tends to get a bit rubbery if smoked low and slow so hot and fast works best if you want crispy skin which limits the amount of smoke it can take on.
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Old 12-26-2012, 05:43 PM   #8
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Well if you're well versed in the internets and forums and whatnot I'd suggest checking out http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/

It doesn't seem to have the activity of this site but I got answer when I first got started. As for what to do I'd do ribs or chicken. Both are easy enough.

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Old 12-26-2012, 05:49 PM   #9
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I'll tell you what was intended to be in a smoker.....

Salmon!

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Old 12-26-2012, 06:11 PM   #10
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1) Chicken quarters. Very cheap and pretty easy, and all dark meat which is easier to get perfect than white. The skin will end up rubbery, but what I usually do is smoke 8 of 'em, well seasoned with rub, toss the finished product in a pan, get some gloves on, and pull the chicken. The rubbery, spicy, fatty skin gets in good contact with the meat while pulling.

For bonus points, brine the quarters the night before. I like water, salt, brown sugar, and a bit of apple cider vinegar.

Lessons to learn while smoking quarters: how to hit doneness without going too far, how low vs. high temp changes the outcome, how water in the water pan (or omitting water) changes the outcome, how to make edible skin. Chicken is cheap and somewhat quick, and it really exhibits the temp / moisture changes well- so easy to see the differences.

2) Pork Tenderloin. In my opinion, the easiest cut to smoke. Almost impossible to screw up. Cook to doneness using a thermometer.

3) Chicken Wings. Marinate and smoke until done. Hit with a light coat of your favorite sauce. Arrange on sheet tray, pop in the oven for a few minutes to crisp up a bit. Hit with the main volume of sauce. Enjoy.

4) Bacon. Get real bacon cut from the slab. Smoke. Enjoy. Do this while smoking other things.

4.1) Sausages. Get real sausage from a meat market, not the store-brand stuff. Smoke 'em while other stuff is on there taking forever.

5) Ribs. Not the hardest, not the easiest either. Develop your own method- membrane on, scored, or pulled off? How to cut the side of ribs? Brine 'em? Baste 'em? Dry rub? Mop? "Cooking to tenderness" is the important lesson with ribs. Once you nail that skill, you can call yourself an ace. (This would be the time to develop your own brine, rub, mop sauce, etc and pick a perfect wood to compliment it)

6) Brisket. In my opinion it's the hardest to get perfect. My dad and a buddy are both great, so I don't bother with brisket. The bark is the key!


"Salmon" says .45/70, who is from Washington, and probably snacks on salmon smoked on Alder all the time! Lucky fellow! (A friend says Red Alder charcoal makes great blackpowder, and it sure is good for fish)

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