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Best first time smoked ribs/brisket recipe: https://amazingribs.com/tested-recipes/spice-rubs-and-pastes/big-bad-beef-rub-recipe

Chickens taste better when cooked whole. Pickles taste better cut. Sandwiches taste better cut and bitten from inside. Meat tastes better sliced against grain.


Definitely a smoker is a personal choice, and what is better depends on what you are looking for.  I say it's a balance of goals, between: (i) making good food, (ii) making authentic BBQ, (iii) having fun with the maaseh of smoking, and (iv) convenience.  Items (iii) and (iv) don't only conflict, they directly oppose each other.

I opted for items (i) and (iv) so went PBC.  I would say WSM is also mostly a (i) and (iv) choice, but it brings in extra elements of (ii) and (iii), at a slight cost to (iv).  Maybe WSM also better at (i)--I have no idea either way.

Further to the above:

If all you want is good food, get a sous vide.

If all you want is authentic BBQ, get a huge offset smoker that you feed with split logs.

If all you want is having fun with the maaseh of smoking, again, get a huge offset smoker.

If all you want is convenience, use your oven.


Henche's PBC review
https://forums.dansdeals.com/index.php?topic=43018.msg1439199#msg1439199
« Last edited by jj1000 on June 04, 2020, 10:13:19 AM »

Author Topic: Smoking Meats  (Read 156878 times)

Offline as2

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #720 on: May 07, 2017, 11:22:57 PM »
Nice. What did you smoke it on? What rub did you use?

Does anyone have any experience using the 3-2-1 method.


What meat did you buy? Trying to figure out what I need to look for or ask for with all the dumb names kosher stores use.
Cedar market has dinosaur rubs this week. Picture looks like individual boned s full short ribs.
Sometimes they sell flanken roast. Not sure if that would be a full rack of ribs.
It was called 3 rib flanken. Smoked with the 3-2-1 method. About 3 hours in the smoker with a rub at ~250. Flipped it face down and wrapped in foil on the oven for ~2 hours. Added BBQ sauce and seasoning and back in the oven face up unwrapped for about 1 hour.
Memories last forever, make them while you can.

Offline henche

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #721 on: May 07, 2017, 11:29:43 PM »

Ok, Henche's Pit Barrel Cooker review.

 

What is it?

Not exactly a smoker, certainly not a grill, and not like anything else.  Best analogy is a smoker, which is why I post in this thread, but if you're set on authenticity, this isn't your thing.

 

The genre is called an Ugly Drum Smoker, and it consists of a oil drum (30 gallons in this case) with a small intake hole in the bottom, and holes to hang the rebar on which you hang the hooks on which you hang the meat on top, a fire basket in the bottom, and a cover on top. See https://www.fix.com/blog/building-an-ugly-drum-smoker/.

 

Why an ugly drum smoker?

 

Because it's set and forget, using charcoal, and relatively cheap.   The air intake and outflow holes are precisely made so that it holds its temperature for 8 or more hours at a steady ~295.   The meat hanging method means no direct heat, so all heat is from the hot air circulation, which circulates nicely because of the shape.

 

Because it's idiot proof.  There are no settings to get right, no variable amounts of fuel and different ways of doing, nothing.  You put the meat in, and close the lid, and monitor the meat temp with a thermometer stuck in the meat. You don't monitor smoker temp because there is no way to change it anyway.

 

And it's charcoal, so you get a nice (almost) real smoke flavor.

 

Why a Pit Barrel Cooker? Can't I make my own for a third the price?

 

Two reasons.

1. They've gotten the tinkering down so that it works right as it should.

 

2. You know how to weld? You gonna do it? No. So go spend the 300 bucks.

 

Compare to other smokers

 

Ok, so before you buy a smoker, I recommend you go read a book called Franklin Barbecue, (link) Written by .  Then, no matter what you end up buying, you'll know you aren't being authentic because it isn't an offset wood burning smoker that you stoked with well seasoned wood (not that kiln dried garbage) and hovered over for 12 hours with a shovel in hand selecting the perfect next piece of wood that will keep the temp perfect and will set it up for the following piece of wood, etc.  Making sure that you never have a smoldering fire but also never too hot etc etc etc.  But, it helped me understand what I was trying to do.

 

Compared to pellet:

You can't afford a pellet.

 

Compared to gas:

With gas, even an expensive one, you'll be adding wood chips and refilling water pan, and having to run out in the middle of a cook for more propane. Also, you get a smokier flavor with charcoal, I think.  Also, temp control.

 

Compared to most charcoal (e.g. cabinet style):

Temp control.  You don't need to open and close dampers, etc.  Ok, I know the snake method works pretty good.

 

Compared to electric:

Don't need to be refilling chips and water pan.

 

Compared to the authentic thing, a wood fired offset smoker:

You aren't going to get one, and if you do, you're never going to use it. It's way too much work.

 

The cons:

Price $300 and unlikely to find on sale.  Steep for a started smoker, but if you're serious you'll end up spending that much eventually anyway.

 

Authenticity.  You will need to get over everything you've ever learned about smoking.  This does not cook "low and slow"; it's about 300 degrees. But it tastes good, so deal with it. You'll never tell your guests that you smoked this brisket for 12 hours, because you'll be done in 8.

 

Fun.  Adding wood chips and monitoring temps and adding water, etc, is all fun.  It isn't fun to just stick it in at 8PM, wrap at 12 and stick in oven at 225 set to turn off at 400AM.

 

I'm henche and I love my PBC. AMA


 

Bumping this.  One year later, here are my updated thoughts.

 

There are two parts to smoking: Food and Fun.  PBC makes great food, but is not as much fun as y'all are having tending your smokers. But it's what works for me, because I never have time to stand over a smoker: I can come home at 8, clean the ashes, start the fire, rub my chickens, load them in by 830, get back on my computer for 3 hours, and then go take my chickens off without ever having touched it in between, and make great food every time.  I've made a few briskets: my method is in the PBC for 5-6 hours, then wrap in foil and stick in oven at 225 until hits 203 (once it's wrapped, it's not getting smoke anyway)--and no tending to anything.  In the trade off of time versus Fun, I have no time for Fun.

 

My current lineup of items I like to make is:

 

Chickens: I use 5 lb chickens. Rub with Memphis Dust, and salt.  Hang for 3 hours.  Carve like a turkey, and serve with bbq sauce.

 

Chicken wings: Toss with Memphis Dust. On grate 45 mins, then baste with mix of honey and hot sauce, and another 45 mins with flipping.

 

Brisket: Rub with Big Bad Beef Rub.  Hang until 160 (roughly 6 hours for a 12 lb brisket, wrap in oven at 225 until 203. I've been very loosey on that timing with still excellent results--on purim night, I just left it in overnight and let the coals burn out, then wrapped and put in oven in morning.

 

Salmon.  Brine for a day with this recipe http://www.smoker-cooking.com/brineforsmokedsalmon.html but I leave it a full day.  Put on cedar board, with enough room on sides to avoid dripping.  Cover with thick layer of brown sugar, and smoke for 45 mins.

 

Ribs: I like ribs, but they're budget busters, and I like brisket better. I don't make too often, but if I do, it's rub, hang for couple hours, then baste with bbq sauce and rehang for 45 mins.

 

 

Offline rs242

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #722 on: May 08, 2017, 12:02:38 AM »
From my understand (from what I read from meathead ) the great advantage of pbc is that u are cooking on top of your coals and your meat is dripping directly on your coals. These drippings are putting 1)smoke 2)moister into the air almost so that u don't need wood to create smoke, it suppose to do wonders to the meat. But I am a simple man I smoke on electric. Just bought a kettle so will start smoking there

Offline noturbizniss

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #723 on: May 08, 2017, 12:04:34 AM »
From my understand (from what I read from meathead ) the great advantage of pbc is that u are cooking on top of your coals and your meat is dripping directly on your coals. These drippings are putting 1)smoke 2)moister into the air almost so that u don't need wood to create smoke, it suppose to do wonders to the meat. But I am a simple man I smoke on electric. Just bought a kettle so will start smoking there
If ur kettle smoking, everything I read says get the slow n sear
READ THE DARN WIKI!!!!

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Offline rs242

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #724 on: May 08, 2017, 12:07:11 AM »
If ur kettle smoking, everything I read says get the slow n sear
I don't know I'm not crazy for it. To be honest  I mostly smoke brisket and/or chicken. For the chicken i need 2 hours for the brisket maybe 5-6 before I wrap. So what do I need this gadget that costs almost as much as the grill so I can smoke for 10 hours at a time.

Offline noturbizniss

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #725 on: May 08, 2017, 12:12:01 AM »
I don't know I'm not crazy for it. To be honest  I mostly smoke brisket and/or chicken. For the chicken i need 2 hours for the brisket maybe 5-6 before I wrap. So what do I need this gadget that costs almost as much as the grill so I can smoke for 10 hours at a time.
That's your call, but you quoted meathead who loved this. Lengthens cook time possibilities,less fuel, better sear.
READ THE DARN WIKI!!!!

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Offline rs242

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #726 on: May 08, 2017, 12:14:25 AM »
That's your call, but you quoted meathead who loved this. Lengthens cook time possibilities,less fuel, better sear.
I believe it was invented by someone that works for amazingribs.com so I took everything he said about it with a grain of salt.

Offline noturbizniss

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #727 on: May 08, 2017, 12:23:28 AM »
I believe it was invented by someone that works for amazingribs.com so I took everything he said about it with a grain of salt.
Then why do u trust anything meathead writes? After all he wants u to buy his book and click his links. Seems like the means justifying the ends here.
READ THE DARN WIKI!!!!

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Offline rs242

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #728 on: May 08, 2017, 12:26:10 AM »
Then why do u trust anything meathead writes? After all he wants u to buy his book and click his links. Seems like the means justifying the ends here.
I agree but I felt like this was too close to home, it just didn't sound like I needed it and I was being sold.

Offline noturbizniss

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #729 on: May 08, 2017, 12:29:12 AM »
I agree but I felt like this was too close to home, it just didn't sound like I needed it and I was being sold.
Makes sense. Worth a go without it see how it goes and then make a decision if u need it. Amazon has great reviews on it too.
READ THE DARN WIKI!!!!

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Offline rs242

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Smoking Meats
« Reply #730 on: May 08, 2017, 12:31:10 AM »
Makes sense. Worth a go without it see how it goes and then make a decision if u need it. Amazon has great reviews on it too.
i think I did ok my first time out but I didn't smoke just offset cook

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #731 on: May 08, 2017, 10:34:36 AM »
Seems from my minimal reading that either a pbc or a quality smoker with some dry runs will quickly teach you how to maintain the temp u want

I have done the reading. However in a low quality offset smoker it is very difficult (maybe even impossible) to maintain 8 hours of temp... promise.

Anyway I am not going to try again until I get a real smoker. It hurts waiting brisket:)

Offline henche

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #732 on: May 08, 2017, 10:36:29 AM »
I have done the reading. However in a low quality offset smoker it is very difficult (maybe even impossible) to maintain 8 hours of temp... promise.

Anyway I am not going to try again until I get a real smoker. It hurts waiting brisket:)

Yah, no low quality anything.  You can get an offset smoker, but need to spend the big bucks on it. And the real bbq joints literally have a guy tending the fire all night. 

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #733 on: May 08, 2017, 11:04:03 AM »
I have done the reading. However in a low quality offset smoker it is very difficult (maybe even impossible) to maintain 8 hours of temp... promise.

Anyway I am not going to try again until I get a real smoker. It hurts waiting brisket:)
Try a kettle
Just because things turned out a certain way doesn't mean you were right.

Offline aygart

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Re: Smoking Meats
« Reply #734 on: May 08, 2017, 11:07:07 AM »
If ur kettle smoking, everything I read says get the slow n sear
-1
Just snake it with a pan of water. I see zero value in the slow and sear. There are plenty of charcoal holders for a fraction of the price of you really want.
Just because things turned out a certain way doesn't mean you were right.