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Old 07-30-2009, 02:29 PM   #1
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Default A couple of grilling questions

I've decided I want to step up my grilling game. I've been using an old propane grill for burgers, dogs, chicken breast, and steaks. I want to start using charcoal and would like to try some small scale smoking. I'm looking at purchasing the Weber One Touch Gold. Is that going to be my best bet? I'm not trying to spend a ton of money. I'm also looking for a good grilling cookbook that will help a novice like myself become a better griller. Something with some good recipes, info on making rubs, and maybe even some smoking advice as well. Any suggestions???

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Old 07-30-2009, 02:49 PM   #2
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Any of the Weber charcoal grills are going to be great and you're mainly looking at a difference in size. I've had a weber charcoal for years and it's held up like a champ. I have to say that I don't use it all that much any more since getting a Genesis.

But a charcoal grill like the the one-touch will do a good job at getting started with smoking. The only thing I might consider is that if you're pretty much only going to be smoking with it, it could be worthwhile to actually buy a little smoker instead. They are designed for that and will be a little easier to manage. But if you're buying the grill to multitask and do some charcoal grilling as well as trying some smoking, that's a good bet.

For books, a good one that will cover a lot of the basics to get you started and provide some solid recipes is Amazon.com: The Barbecue! Bible (9780761149439): Steven Raichlen: Books

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Old 07-30-2009, 02:59 PM   #3
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+1 on the weber. I have 2 of them. The biggest faeture that adds versalitility is the hinged grate for adding more coals. Also grab a set of charcoal baskets, they help keep them in place on the sides for "low and slow" type cooking....

Here's a great article and video from one of the Chicago columnists about smoking on a weber...

Ribs on regular grill? It's no smoke, mirrors -- chicagotribune.com

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Old 07-30-2009, 03:02 PM   #4
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I've got a Weber Q series charcoal grill. It's compact but can still grill quite a bit, also the price (about $130) is decent. If you want to grill a ton of food at once, though, this is not the grill for you. I've got a picture of my grill in my photo gallery if you want to check it out.

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Old 07-30-2009, 03:14 PM   #5
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First consideration, is how much grill you need. I purchased a Charbroil grill with side smoke box and it's perfect for a good amount of food (20lbs of rib tips at one time), but it does take a lot of coal for a good session. Personally I'd like to have a gas for weekday stuff and then charcoal for leisure/smoking. My first smoker was one of those R2D2 looking things and that worked great for smaller batches (1 duck/chicken, with some smaller items next to it). I liked it's drip tray feature and the heat seemed very efficient. One bad thing about my Charbroil, is I can't seem to find a themometer for it, that is a must for the almighty slow and low. I think I spent like $180 at Menards and so far this is my 3rd season with it, but I do need to oil up some spots where the finish is getting worn. I like a grill I can put my protein, starch, and veggie on all at the same time, keeps the kitchen cleaner. Depends on the number of people you're cooking for I guess.

Amazon.com: Char Broil Silver Smoker: Home & Garden

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Old 07-30-2009, 03:23 PM   #6
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I don't really need a ton of grill space. It's just me and my wife, and the ocassional friends and family we might have over. I'm planning on keeping my propane grill for quick things. Just wanted to have the option to cook with charcoal if I have the time and to do some entry level smoking.

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Old 07-30-2009, 03:34 PM   #7
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For that, IMO your Weber Gold choice is exactly what you need....

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Old 07-31-2009, 03:37 PM   #8
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I have the classic weber and the weber performer. I would have to recommend the performer. It had a small propane burner (via a camping cylinder) that gets the coals lit. The grill is awesome! It has a nice counter and a storage bin for your coals and tools. Its a bit pricey, but makes charcoal grilling almost as easy gas grilling. I fire it up nightly. The classic weber will get the job done too though, just make sure you invest in a charcoal chimney.

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