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+++Enter At Your Own Risk+++ At the gentle nudging (I said gentle y'all) of a few friends, I have started these blogs in order to share my culinary goings-on and daily misadventures through my own brand of humor (ok, sarcasm). I just write about stuff! At 50, I have learned that living has gotten in the way of life - and I am going to blaze my own personal trail to fun (hopefully)! If it is feminine, great. If it is not, so much the better! Hopefully fun that does not land me in jail............

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Puff - Puff - Give aka., A Follow-Up on Smoking

Let me start by saying – OH MY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Between the eight hour brine and then smoking, the turkey breasts were great.

Now I need to recap the highlights and lowlights of my virgin smoking extravaganza. Ok, I was not smoking virgins… You know what I am talking about.

Stop laughing.

Picking up where I left off in the brining article…

What I had planned:
  • Get moving at 9am
  • Soak wood chunks and chips
  • Uncover smoker
  • Start fire in the Weber chimney
  • Dump coals in fire box and get smoker up to temp
  • Start smoking those meats
It was smoking

What really happened:   
  • Only finished brine soak at 4pm 
  • I only had 2 chunks of fruit wood to smoke. Not nearly enough. 
  • Had to google how to start fire in Weber Chimney 
  • Had to raid one of those outdoor ‘property for rent paper’ boxes for newspaper 
  • It took 4 tries to get coals fired properly 
  • The grill had not been cleaned from its maiden voyage last month so it was growing things 
  • I could not get the grill up to temp so I had to start another load of charcoal (which went easily I might add) 
  • I had to drop charcoal and chips on the fire every 20 minutes to keep heat up.
Chimney Fire

What I learned: 
  • I need more charcoal 
  • I need more wood chunks 
  • I need to have a store of newspaper handy 
Proof that the fire made it to the firebox

The meats:
  • The slab of bacon was a waste of energy. It did not add much to it.
  • The bologna is always good smoked. I have a small line of people waiting for the next smoking event. 
  • The turkeys turned out great, but there was a surprising event. I wrapped one in aluminum foil and left one exposed. The assumption was the wrapped one would be juicier and slightly less intense. What I got was a dryer and more “well done” breast from the aluminum wrapping and a super juicy breast out of the one that was left exposed in the smoker. After talking to a friend who is well versed in smoking meats, I learned that he was not surprised that the wrapped one cooked faster because the foil and heat cause the breast to sort of steam itself. However, he was surprised that the exposed breast was juicier. He stated that meant I had the temp just right and the breast crusted over and sealed in the juices. Pretty funny since I was SUPPOSED to have the smoker at a constant 250°F but could barely keep it at even 200°F. 
Bottom line:
I will do this again – WITH a cohort in crime. The outcome was well worth the work, but isn’t it always more fun to have a smoking buddy?  Just say'n...

And I did not take a photo of the finished product... Doh..

My grubby hands

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