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Old 06-20-2011, 10:34 AM   #1
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Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

Who here Smokes food? I am learning and would love tips/tricks/recipes etc!

I have been messing around with a cheap vertical propane smoker~ 150.00 works well for the price point. Temps do good at 225-250... cant get it hotter than that with wood/water in it... might be my tank.

Ive smoked some ribs, chicken, steaks etc and learning all the time but here is what I did yesterday.

Applied rub and let sit over night as follows:
Mustard to get rub to stick (coat on ribs)
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup paprika
2 1/2 tablespoons ground black pepper
2 1/2 tablespoons salt
1 tablespoon mustard powder
1 1/2 tablespoons chili powder
1 1/2 tablespoons garlic powder
1 1/2 tablespoons onion powder
1 teaspoons cayenne

I used Hickory wood chips, burned up quick though.. even after soaking 30+ min in water... only real down side is smokes good but not long enough.

Its a bit sweet I have another rub from a friend that I may try again next time. I did a rack of spare ribs and a rack of baby backs. the baby backs needed a little more time to tender up. I wrapped them in foil the last hour but they needed a bit more time~ I will know next time. The spare ribs might have been a little to long but not bad. Internal temps were 130 before the last hour in foil.

I cooked them at 225 for 5 hours using Hickory for wood, replacing the wood regularly to keep the smoke going. Smoke ring turned out good.

end result:
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Old 06-20-2011, 10:52 AM   #2
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

I have that exact same smoker and it's awesome. I've done all sorts of ribs, steaks, briskets, chickens, and even Christmas turkey! Turkey I brined over night. Try mixing woods... yesterday we did a brisket with half hickory and half apple wood. The thing about smokers is most of the smoke flavor happens early on in the cooking process so even if the smoke stops later it's ok. Also, that temp is perfect for the low-and-slow cooking method. I can get mine up to over 400 if I close off all the vents and it's not TOO cold outside, which is great if I don't have a lot of time to wait.

Love that this thing is basically set-it and forget-it. We put the brisket in yesterday, ran a bunch of errands and went to the movies... came home and it was ready. I did a dry rub this time instead of the marinating in Claudes I usually do. Most important thing is don't let the water pan go dry.
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:11 AM   #3
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I'm coming over to Brandon's house now. Want company? Hahaha.
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:30 AM   #4
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

I have a vetical charcoal smoker. I use it about 2-3 times a month. Planning on doing a brisket with a secret rub my dad gave me. Love smoked food.
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:34 AM   #5
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

We have a charcoal grlle and a smoker. We have used the smoker a few times and I love smoked food. Those ribs look tasty.
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:34 AM   #6
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg687 View Post
I have that exact same smoker and it's awesome. I've done all sorts of ribs, steaks, briskets, chickens, and even Christmas turkey! Turkey I brined over night. Try mixing woods... yesterday we did a brisket with half hickory and half apple wood. The thing about smokers is most of the smoke flavor happens early on in the cooking process so even if the smoke stops later it's ok. Also, that temp is perfect for the low-and-slow cooking method. I can get mine up to over 400 if I close off all the vents and it's not TOO cold outside, which is great if I don't have a lot of time to wait.

Love that this thing is basically set-it and forget-it. We put the brisket in yesterday, ran a bunch of errands and went to the movies... came home and it was ready. I did a dry rub this time instead of the marinating in Claudes I usually do. Most important thing is don't let the water pan go dry.
thanks for the info, temps are fine its just I have to turn it up full blast to get it to about 250 and it takes a while to get there. Fine for now but when its colder... I worry about temp. Since yours gets hotter its wither the burner, regulator, or tank. I will see....

I generally dont cook any hotter than 250 but I want to be able to get there lol. I have mixed apple wood and hickory, I just didnt on ribs. Any other tips you can give me? I kept the bottom side vents about 20% open and the top 100% open. I used 3 boxes full of wood, replaced every hour or longer~ once smoke fully stopped.

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I'm coming over to Brandon's house now. Want company? Hahaha.
give me a few more goes at it to iron out some details, but I am slowly getting there
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Old 06-20-2011, 11:56 AM   #7
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If you want a good marinade for ribs try orange juice,ginger ale,salt,pepper,garlic. Let it sit over night. Once those ribs are cooked the bone will fall right out of them.
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Old 06-20-2011, 02:17 PM   #8
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

i want to do another beer can chicken, but change it up this time
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Old 06-20-2011, 06:48 PM   #9
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Try keeping your top vent more closed or shut all the way to keep heat in. Also closing the side vents more will control how long it takes to burn your wood. So far I haven't made anything bad on this thing lol! I keep experimenting and it turns out great. Bbq sauce works well here too as it doesn't char at the lower temps (unlike on a grill) and you get that great caramelization!
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Old 06-20-2011, 06:49 PM   #10
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Try amrinades with acidic content... vinegar lemon/lime juice to help tenderize.
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Old 06-20-2011, 07:27 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg687
Try keeping your top vent more closed or shut all the way to keep heat in. Also closing the side vents more will control how long it takes to burn your wood. So far I haven't made anything bad on this thing lol! I keep experimenting and it turns out great. Bbq sauce works well here too as it doesn't char at the lower temps (unlike on a grill) and you get that great caramelization!
Mmmmmmmm you guys are making me hungry.
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Old 06-20-2011, 07:43 PM   #12
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

Dr.pepper ribs......soak em over night!
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:41 AM   #13
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

Regular Coke works well too. Just don't use diet.
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Old 06-21-2011, 09:55 AM   #14
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg687 View Post
Try keeping your top vent more closed or shut all the way to keep heat in. Also closing the side vents more will control how long it takes to burn your wood. So far I haven't made anything bad on this thing lol! I keep experimenting and it turns out great. Bbq sauce works well here too as it doesn't char at the lower temps (unlike on a grill) and you get that great caramelization!
by opening/closing the side vents you control the wood burning time, can you expand on that more as to what effects it and how? also do the side vents modify temps?

Ive always read keep the top vent fully open when smoking to keep the food from getting bitter from to much smoke~
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Old 06-21-2011, 11:20 AM   #15
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

By closing the side vents you limit the ventilation to the wood box. Incomplete combustion=smoldering=smoke.

I've never had a bitter taste from the smoke, so I can't expand on that. I just know that by opening the "chimney" you are letting the heat rise out and cool air comes in from the bottom which would lower the temps.

Easy to experiment with this and you don't even have to waste any meat. Just fire it up and see how hot it can get with the vents open or closed... at the worst you waste some propane

In case you wonder where I get this info, I am a fire investigator... fire science is my job. It also comes from lots of experimenting with my setup. Give yours a try and post back what happens
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:08 PM   #16
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

I will give it a try for sure next go around and see how it goes, with no water in there I can get it up to 300 but when I put water in it it cools it down a lot as well
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:15 PM   #17
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

also... I smoked 4 serloin steaks the other day, turned out good just ate one. I believe I like it better smoked about an hour then grilled to finish cuz the smoker doesnt get the meat hot enough to get the fat out of it.
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Old 06-21-2011, 12:56 PM   #18
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

If you go lower temp and longer cook time you can render out some more fat. Though on steaks I like the smoke flavor and the grill char Your 2-part cook is probably the best way to go there.
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Old 06-22-2011, 06:55 AM   #19
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

I'm going to have to watch this one...i've been wanting to pick up a smoker for a long time.
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Old 06-22-2011, 08:11 AM   #20
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Re: Smoked some Ribs yesterday (smoking discussion inside)

ate the last of my ribs last night, going to try the chicken today
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