I own The Hondo. It is a smoker with an offset fire box and I do pork butts. I have had it for ten years but I only started seriously using it about 6 years ago.
I dont own a smoker, but I do own a Weber Ranch Kettle which I use for both.
I smoke chickens, ribs, brisket, and fish.
I own 2 smokers.. A small one that cooks real slow (little cheif) and a big one that cooks fairly fast. Both are electric.. I typically smoke chicken or make beef or venison jerky.
How many of you own a smoker and what creations have you made?
Y’Know, we’ve had these discussions before about which is better etc etc. I like to check the EBAY ad’s under BBQ equipment now and then to see who’s selling the big trailer BBQ things. I guess we all have delusions of grandeur about something—the hot car, the better boat etc etc. Well I like to do the dream of a Big BBQ on a trailer…smoking my way around the country, with a trail of PigPickers and Foodies following along behind !!! The reality is that I use the Brinkman about 10 times a year. Normally for a small group of family 8-10 folks. Once or twice a year when we all get together (70 or so people) it really gets some work. With that in mind, I don’t see a major investment for one of the "better" cookers in my future. This does just fine for what we need. I say that not as a criticism of anyone’s choice for a cooker, but to say there is a lot more to choosing a cooker than the amount it will hold !
I can live with a 3-4 hour turnaround on the fuel…I have several CORDS of Hickory cut and ready to use when needed. when I get pissed at something I go out and break some of it into small fist-sized chunks which work well with the charcoal in the Brinkman. I guess my point is that I am happy being a casual cooker. I enjoy having the chance to get out and ‘play’ with my ‘Que as I do. AND I hope all of you find the balance that works for you. The thing to remember is that this is FUN..if it’s not you’re missing out on the best part of cookin’ out.!!
I own a Brinkmann, which I use for cold smoking (mostly turkeys & other birds) and a Klose, which is for barbecue, hot smoked fish & everything else. With the Klose, I do barbecue (pork shoulders & ribs) for about 120 people every year and once did smoke roasted prime rib & salmon for 60 for a wedding.
The Klose was made in Houston by David Klose. Check his site at http://www.bbqpits.com. Mine is the 20" x 42". He builds to last — mine weighs about 1,000 lbs.
Great photo, Al ! I’ve got both a Brinkman "stack" smoker as well as a Holland grill / smoker. It’s mostly smoked fish or chicken for me either smoked with alderwood or hickory — the chicken blessed by a dowsing of BBQ sauce from Extra Billy’s in Richmond, VA.
When we moved from an apartment to a house in the ‘burbs, one of the very first thing we bought was a Big Green Egg smoker. It is based on the design of the Japanese kamado ovens–it is ceramic and like the name says, egg-shaped. And green. It seems like it is sold everywhere down South, but I did find a place that sold them not too far from me in Clifton, NJ.
We are in love with it. It is faster than metal smokers, and the meat gets a subtle smoky flavor without being overpoweringly smoky. I use mesquite or hickory chips, mostly–sometimes applewood. I use it mainly for turkey or pork ribs, but a few months ago I smoked a brisket. I found several recipes–used a dry rub and a wet baste; it took about 9-10 hours on a very low temperature and had to be basted constantly, but was it ever worth it! Only regret is that I can’t get one of those huge slabs of brisket like you guys in Texas keep to yourselves–we can only get these postage-stamp size things that they call brisket.
I recommend the BGE to anyone in the market for a smoker–check out their website (www.biggreenegg.com).
I got a cheap electric smoker that most of you would not use.
I put on a few chickens this afternoon while the Titans were playing and they will be ready in about two hours.
I rubbed the chicken with all kinds of kinky spices, stuffed it with onions, peppers, tomatoes and spices.
Some says it doesn’t doe anything to add spices to the water, but I always do. Perhaps it is due to the olafactory excitement it adds, but at least I think it adds to the flavor. I always add BBQ sauce to the water plus orange marmalade, onions, peppers and some spices. It cannot hurt.
It is raining and cold in Knoxville and when I walk outside, it sure does smell good. I always have a cold body warmer with me.
Paul E. Smith
I personally have two Weber Smokey Mountains which are each loaded with four butts right now. I got a beautiful case of IBP butts at Sam’s on Friday.
But a friend of mine has the same smoker as you and asked me how to get a longer burn with his. I suggested that he purchase a WSM fire ring and put it inside the firebox of his smoker. He could then try using the Minion method with Kingsford. He says he got a 10 hour burn with very little adjustments necessary.
Just something to think about.
It will go about 3 hours the first load..then 2 or so on each smaller feeding as things go alone. That’s if I don’t open the lid like this to show off. I try to keep it at about 225 degrees or a little less. I do have to watch out that I don’t put a chunk of meat too close to where the boxws connect as that is the hottest part of the cooker. Shoulders do in 6-8 hours, and Brisket in 12-18 depending on thickness.
Stogie posted some good info on a prior thread about cookers and smokers. Do a search and see if you can find it on file here?? My little Aluminum Electric would not hold temp in any kind of cold/breezy weather. I used to put it in the garage and keep it in the inverted box that it came in for insulation and it still lost too much heat to be able to handle anything but the thinnest jerky. Here in the midwest it is to damp and cold for 1/2 the year to do the same with that little electric heating element. I would never use the Brinkman in a garage or any closed in room…CO would end my cooking hobby in a flash. I use it in the snow here , but it takes a lot more attention to keep things even at 225 internal temp.
That’s the slow smoker I’ve wanted to get – how long will it go one one stoking? What’s the temp in the big box while smoking? And finally, what exactly is it about your climate that interferes with the Little Chief’s smoking?
Them chunks sure do look invitin’! jm
Al, I assumed you had the lid open for the pic???
Sure looks good to me[:p][:p][:p]
Paul E. Smith
I used to use the Lil Chief electric for making Jerky, It did fine out in the SoCal Desert, especially in summer heat. But here in the damp-cold it just doesn’t do the job. So we tend to use the Brinkman Sidebox a lot these days. It was about $140 at WalMart 3 years ago when we got it. I use mixed charcoal and soaked wood chunks and do Brisket and Pork Butt more often than Ribs or Poultry. Here it is at work.
Those are two Pork Butts and a 14 lb. Brisket about finished in the photo[:p]
I own a Weber Smokey Mountain, known in the bbq community simply as the WSM. It makes fantastic bbq with little effort. I have done brisket, ribs, pulled pork, sausage, turkey and venison on it. If you really want to get wound up on making your own great bbq, check out: http://virtualweberbullet.com/
You must be logged in to reply to this topic.