So I was given a brand new LP smoker from the inlaws.
It has a huge burner on the bottom with a cast iron woodchip box right above it and a big bowl of water that sits right above the woodxhip box.
After that is the 4 racks for cooking.
I'm going to break her in this week but I just gotta know: does a propane smoker pass the ar15.com test?
Are these things a waste of time or is this LP smoker the best thing to happen to smokers?
What's the skinny?
It is what I'm going to buy next week.
Makes more sense to me than an electric smoker. The only problem I see is that propane releases some moisture when burned.
From what I'm seeing moisture is needed anyways to counterbalance the smoke.
There is a huge bowl that sits right above the chip box that is made for alot of water.
That water burns off while you cook and just like the chip box, it will need to be filled back up if it goes empty while cooking.
Looks like on my model, that huge water bowl also will catch the drippings so I recommend lining it with foil each time.
Guess I'm one of the few that has even heard about these or uses one?
The 'brine' solution ( mixture ) and process is just as important as the 'smoking' process.
I have an electric smoker ( no water pan ) and have never had an issue w/ anything getting dried out unless I simply smoked it too long.
My smoker has hot spots so I know what area to either rotate or place the thickest cuts.
Its all about practice and experimentation.
Nothing beats properly smoked salmon, some sharp cheddar cheese, nice crackers and a cold micro-brew.
as long as it can control the temp and smoulder wood chunks it's a good as anything else.
I have the Mountain House LP smoker from Walmart. It kicks ass. The temp gague on the front works very well. I have done pork, beef, fish chicken turkey and wild boar in the smoker. All were great. Except I overcooked the wild boar.
Check out this link: www.smoking-meat.com
I have one. The propane last for a pretty good while, I can get about 4 smoke cookings done.
Your main problem will be heat control vs cook time. Lower heat longer cooking.
Briskets seem to give me the most fits. But the way I cook brisket is to smoke for the first 10 hours and finsh cooking in the oven at a higher temp for about 2 hours. Your meat will only absorb the smoke flavor in the first hour or so.
When cooking, stack your meat with the main meat on the bottom rack. Say you are going to cook brisket/turkey, ham, ribs and sausage. Put the brisket/turkey on the lowest rack, ham next then ribs and sausage. The drippings season the lower racks. Put wine or beer in the bowl and drink what is not put in while the smoker is going.
Also experiment with different types of wood. I like hickory and mesquite for my meats.
Once you start smoking your meats your bank account will go down and your waste line will expand.
Some of the smokers can hold a lot of meat, mine will do around 50 lbs. Cook for the whole week.
I have a SmokinTek, basically a copy of the Cookshack electric smoker oven.
Electric is the way to go, I just set it outside, plug it in and let it go.
FAT CAP………ALWAYS UP
Lather it in you favorite rub.
Smoke it at 225-250 until the internal hits around 145. Fat Cap Up !!!!! Hard for me to do, especially during cooler months (go for 130 to 135, then wrap in Aluminum foil)
Re-rub it and double wrap with foil, fat cap always up.
Cook it until you hit 195 internal. Best to wrap in foil with atleast 2 to 2 ½ hours to go. The temperature will rise quickly once in the foil. We pulled it at 180 degrees and was very tender.
Pull it off the smoker and let it sit in a cooler for an hour.
Pull it outta the cooler and let it sit out for 45 min or so to cool a bit. Maybe 15 to 30 minutes tops. Didn’t even do that last time.
Reserve the juices in the foil.
Pull all the meat by hand and with a fork.
Pour the reserved juices back over the meat and if ya want sprinkle some more rub around.
Some other things you can do is to score the outside before cooking 3/4 inchvdeep cross-hatched like a ham. This will produce more outside surface and more flavor of the rub. The meat will look black when cooked; this is all good. That black is called "Mrs. Brown" and is the flavoring for the pulled pork.
Cook time should be around 1.5 hours per pound, but the temp is the tell-tail. Give yourself up to 10 hours.
Hickory and Mesquite (strong flavoring woods) are best. The smoke won't penetrate too much, so using a heavy flavor is all good.
Make sure when you use the thermometer that you don't hit the bone. It will give you a false reading and the meat won't be done. I usually hit it from the top at a 45* angle.
3 Hours uncovered at around 200 degrees
2 Hours rapped tightly in Aluminum foil (you can baste with hickory sauce or favorite mop)
1 Hour unwrapped to slightly dry out the meat some (Baste very lightly with sauce to avoid burning)
If doing Babyback Ribs, only go for 5 hours, they just don’t need as much time. Breakdown as such 2 ½ - 2 - ½ to start
Also, there is one guy on the board that is affiliated with Texas Hot Pepper Jelly... Good stuff to use for basting that last hour.
When doing any kind of poultry, make sure to brine overnight first.
I use this recipe with a few changes: (depending what I have available)
2 Gal Water
2 Cups Kosher Salt
3 Cups Sugar
1/4 Cup Zatarains Liquid Crab Boil
4 TBS Black Pepper
1 TBS Dried Rosemary
1 TBS Thyme
1/4 Cup Molasses
1/4 Cup White Wine (not Cooking Wine)
1/4 Cup Worcestershire
Shoot, you guys rock.
Thanks for the replies!!!
I have the mountian house as well and it has 2 dampers on the sides and one on the top so I don't think I'll have any issues with heat control other then finding the right burner and damper settings for each given climate.
I guess the burner works so good my father-in-law's brother uses it to cook in his cast iron pan so the smoker can take the place of the BBQ when cooking outdoors with a cast iron pan.
I found the link: www.texaspepperjelly.com/
They used to have a 10% discount to ARFCOM members. The code was ARFCOM.
photokirk was the guy who posted it. He has some great smoking posts.
I have the Mountain House LP smoker from Walmart. It kicks ass. The temp gague on the front works very well. I have done pork, beef, fish chicken turkey and wild boar in the smoker. All were great.
I like mine. Had electric one before that really wasn't suited to my liking.
Q3131A thanks for all your help.
I already have a leg up now due to you, thx.
Anytime. Now get a smokin!
I looked again and I actually have the "smokey monuntian" series.
The legs are kind of cheap but I'm going to brace them with wood and put casters on the wood so I can wheel it around.
I have to break this sonofabitch in a few times first, then I'll get to cooking.
I'm going to see if I can find a few people I know to go in on a huge bag of mesquite to keep the cost down, don't want to be buying that stuff in small numbers.
I'm sure a few of the inlaws even would.
www.rbjb.com/rbjb/rbjbboard/index.html (be sure to follow the links to recipies also!!).
Dry rub briskets and pork.
I have a gas smoker (Sam's club), stick burner (Silver Smoker), and an electric smoker (Big Chief). They all turn out a fairly good product--getting use to them is the key. I use the electric rarely, but it does an excellent job on smoked cheese (when the weather is cold). The large gas smoker is nice for convenience.
The stick burner turns out the best pork/beef products--but I have been using it more than the other smokers, so that has a good bit to do with it (however, it is harder to maintain a good, consistent temp than the gas smoker.
Don't sweat they type of smoker you have--once you learn how to do a good, consistent product (and begin to slowly improve) in it, you will probably upgrade to something else. Maintaining a constant temp in the smoker is the hardest part for newbies.