Anyone here into slow smoking meats? (no pun intended)

Discussion in 'BS Forum' started by Cman60, Jan 25, 2013.

  1. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    Was wondering... Wifey got me a Masterbuilt 40" Electric Smoker for Christmas and I've been all about it ever since. I've done Duck, Chicken, a Brisket and several racks of Ribs all with mixed results.

    What I have to get used to is not having to "tend the grill" like you would with charcoal or propane. I did a pork shoulder that took 13hrs to complete. Actually went to a christmas party in New Jersey, came home and still had another 7 hrs cook time in front of me. :)

    I can tell you that when I pulled that shoulder out of the smoker, the internal temp was 203F and I wrapped it in foil for another 3 hrs off the grill. The result was a pulled pork that rivaled the best I've had at a lot of bbq joints. For the Superbowl, I'm doing a 10lb. whole brisket and plan to make "burnt ends" as well. I'm also thinking of my friends that do eat pork and perhaps doing a 8lb. Boston Butt Pork Roast for pulled pork. Both pieces take between 10-15hrs to cook to completion.

    The unit I have doesn't do a great job on Poultry because I can't get the temps above 275F which means the skin isn't crispy. I could finish the birds in the oven and maybe for this upcoming Turkey day, that's a plan.

    I've even done homecured Bacon. Funny, but when you're black and ask for a Pork Belly, everybody wants to sell you chitlins. Go Figure :lol:

    So far, I've had great success making my own bacon. Takes about a week to cure and then smoke for several hours. I'm also saving cash as the pork belly usually is about $1-3 per pound cheaper than store brands. Fortunately, I've found some Mennonite meat markets that are a more sophisticated and provided great cuts of meat. One of the perks of living in South Central Pa.

    Anyway, anybody out there with any experience in this area? I would welcome any advice or shared experiences.
     
    #1 Cman60, Jan 25, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 25, 2013
  2. Bellows1

    Bellows1 Well-Known Member

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    That sounds so good, I may give it a try myself.

    I know you're big into fishing as well, ever tried smoking fish?

    What kinds of wood have you tried?

    A local store here has a large smoke house, they do meats, hams, pepperoni, bacon... good stuff.
     
  3. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    I'm using Applewood for my pulled pork. I use Hickory for the briskets and burnt ends. I have several more experiments on my to do list. First of which is smoked sausage which I love followed by smoked salmon. I'm not sure what wood to use on fish as I don't wanna oversmoke it.

    Around Wednesday this week, I'll be taking the bacon out of the brine, drying it in the fridge and then cold smoking it for a few hours for flavor. I should have 5-8 pounds or so of bacon at a cost of roughly $2.60/lb. the flavor of home cured bacon beats anything you can buy in a regular store.

    Bellows, if you get the opportunity give smoking meats a try. Electric smokers are the best for newbies like me as you set the temp, the time, load the wood chips, then go find something else to do. :)

    Once you start, you'll have a hard time going to a BBQ joint again. Trust me on that one! :up:
     
    #3 Cman60, Jan 27, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2013
  4. blackssmagic

    blackssmagic Member

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    Cman,

    What is it you would like to discuss, I really didnt smoke much until I got stationed in Texas. After being there and going to all the different competitions and talking to people I really enjoy it.
     
  5. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    Generally, just wanted to trade info on techniques and such. I'm new to using a smoker and I'm finding that timing is everything.

    So far, the 3-2-1 method has worked out real good. It makes great fall off the bone Ribs. I'm gonna try cutting the initial smoke time to 2hrs instead of 3 just to see the result.

    I'm also interested in different "Rubs". I got a few recipies but I'm always open for new ones. :)
     
  6. Barry the Baptist

    Barry the Baptist SeƱor Ding Dong of Mods
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    My buddy in Salt Lake does a huge brisket and ribs every Memorial Day Weekend. We were outside in the sleet last year smoking that brisket. I'm not sure what he uses but it was unreal. He likes to go to the competitions and talk to the guys and get ideas from them.

    Just thought I'd mention that I was at a local grocery store in Vegas that has some different things that you wouldn't find at your normal grocery store and they had Tur Duck Hen in the freezer. I am going to kick the idea around of making one of them this year and see how that goes.
     
  7. stinkyB

    stinkyB 2009 Best Avatar Award Winner

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    I love smoked fish, but it's best with oilier varieties (bluefish, mackerels, salmon, etc.....) which is good, because fish like blues, and king mack are less desirable than alot of others......

    Best woods are orange, and apple. I also add stuff to the water dish (juice, spices, fruit, etc)

    The key is the brine. Make sure it's saturated enough with the kosher salt & brown sugar, but get creative with other spices / seasonings. Let it brine overnight, then rinse and pat dry and let the glaze develop in the fridge.
    It only takes around 2hrs on the smoker. comes out delicious, but also great for making smoked fish dip

    As far as other meats, I smoked a 12lb turkey for the games last weekend. Put it on the smoker @ 11am, so it was ready at 5. :beer:
     
  8. RuJFan

    RuJFan Well-Known Member

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    Try deer shoulder.
    If you're not a hunter, find a local butcher. It's actually deer season, so there are a lot of hunters who bring deer for cleaning & cutting. I guarantee the butcher will have good pieces.

    Before cooking, soak the meat in water for about an hour -- it'll remove excess of blood and help get rid of "gamy" taste. After soaking the meat should be light red color.
     
  9. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    Thanks Stinky. I have a freezer full of bluefish from a very successful Belmar trip last year so I will definitely smoke perhaps a pound or two of my choice, trimmed bluefish fillets. :beer:
     
  10. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    I know of a few butcher shops out in Adams county that probably have deer. I'm curious, does it cook up like Brisket? Do you slice or pull it? How long per pound of meat do you leave it on the smoke? 1.5hrs/lb seems to be the rule of thumb. You mentioned soaking the meat. Do you brine it as well?
     
  11. RuJFan

    RuJFan Well-Known Member

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    With deer I prefer stakes, haven't smoked myself. I tried though -- a guy at work brings deer over this time of year, I'll ask him.
     
  12. stinkyB

    stinkyB 2009 Best Avatar Award Winner

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    Good snack for SB sunday...... if you make a dip, use a cream cheese base (not mayo) "fat free" actually is better to use as it's easier to mix/blend due to it's thinner consistency. (the healthier factor is just a bonus)

    also another tip is to combine your shredded smoked fish with milk in a separate bowl before combining your ingredients.... also helps everything mix together better/blend flavors. google some recipes, and put your own spin on it, but a few things I like to include: celery, red bell pepper, jalapeno, red onion and of course spices & seasonings, and maybe a touch of hot sauce to taste......

    I'm assuming that the fillets are skinned. you may want to lay some foil underneath (with some holes poked through, for smoke flavor) to hold it together....... after growing up in LI you realize how spoiled you get living here when you see "choice, trimmed bluefish fillets", when here you only keep bluefish when you're not catching anything else. :wink:

    maybe I'll try to go fishing this week.
     
    #12 stinkyB, Jan 28, 2013
    Last edited: Jan 28, 2013
  13. tcrock

    tcrock Well-Known Member

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    I attempted this process many times over the summer with a propane grill (with a wood chip box).......found it difficult with the grill but it was still fun to try. (the smoker box didn't hold enough chips, and it was difficult to add more as cooking went on. also was difficult to get the chips to smoke when temp was too low on the grill

    I did ok with ribs and chicken, and did a pork shoulder that was ok.........I tried brisket twice and failed miserably both times........still not sure if it was underdone or overdone as it was tough....it definitely failed the pull test.
     
  14. DemoIsland

    DemoIsland Member

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    Smoking requires the double P. Practice and patience. I am not a big fan of electric smokers though. Charcoal provides much better flavor. Because I use charcoal, I don't start the smoking process until I am half way into the cooking process. Smoking incorrectly can easily turn a good meat into something disgustingly bitter. Low and Slow, best way to go!
     
  15. zace

    zace Well-Known Member

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    I had a smoker I used to use. I loved it, o love that taste that you get with a charcoal smoker over an electric one. Pork is especially good when done right.

    Sent from my SGH-T989 using Tapatalk 2
     
  16. stinkyB

    stinkyB 2009 Best Avatar Award Winner

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    actually you should try it the other way...... the meat absorbs the smoke more intially. I'll give it the more smoke initially, then let it ease back and simmer over the warm coals...... but I guess it depends on what you're cooking

    I use the basic R2D2 looking charcoal smoker, with natural charcoal, occ oak logs
     
  17. DemoIsland

    DemoIsland Member

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    Will definitely try it out this way this week and let you know my thoughts. Thanks.
     
  18. stinkyB

    stinkyB 2009 Best Avatar Award Winner

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    Like searing the meat on the grill initially, then letting the insides cook slowly......
     
  19. Cman60

    Cman60 The Dark Admin

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    Ok.. I gotta Pork belly in the smoker that I just brined for the last 7 days. Right now, I'm thinking a 7 hour smoke and then put it into the fridge for 24hrs before I slice and cook. I'm using hickory only so I'll know if the smoke took. I'll know by Friday if I've wasted $16 and a lot of time. Bacon anyone?
     
  20. Demosthenes9

    Demosthenes9 Well-Known Member

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    Man, that sounds delicious.

    If you haven't done a Hickory smoked Prime Rib yet, you really really really ought to give it a shot. Just be sure not to hit it with too much smoke.

    Saw your post about the ribs and the 3-2-1 method. I generally use the 2-1-1 myself as I prefer my ribs to be a bit firmer. If I'm not in a hurry, I'll pass on the foil completely and just give them more time, perhaps 6 hours overall for St. Louis style spare ribs. Less time for baby backs.

    How did the brisket and the Butt turn out ? BTW, if you didn't know it before, be careful when stacking one meat above a different one as flavors of the one on top will drip down onto the other. Found this out the hard way when a turkey came out tasting like a pork roast :)
     

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