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JDEaston

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  • Location:
    Kentucky
  • Grill
    Akorn

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  1. JDEaston

    Western Brand Lump Charcoal

    I've done a few cooks with this so far and for the price I really like it. Its not too smokey, I didn't notice any sparking and the price is right. Like GaryB said it did take me a little longer to get the temps up, but once up to temp it holds steady. From looking at my firebox after a 9lb pork shoulder cook it seems to be more efficient than Royal Oak, which I would guess means it's more dense, which is also why it takes longer to get it up to temp. All in all I like it, but I'm not a lump snob by any means, so everyone hereay not have the same opinion of the Western brand lump as I do.
  2. The smoking stone will handle 700+ without any issues, just don't put it in the grill wet and also let it come up to temp in somewhat of a correlation of the grill. In other words don't prehead the Akorn to 600-700 degrees then toss the smoking stone in if it's been sitting at room temp. However like ckreef said, unless you're making or purchasing your own dough for high temp cooks, you're going to ruin a store bought pizza if you shoot for 600+ temps.
  3. JDEaston

    Wireless thermometer help

    I went through the same issue with probes with my Maverick units. Had thermoworks not released the smoke right around the time I was going to buy my third set of probes in three years I would have stuck with Maverick. I knew thermoworks made a great product and even though it was essentially double the price of my 733, I figured at the rate I was going through probes it may be cheaper in the long run to get the smoke. That said, both are great thermometers, but having used a couple of Mavericks as well as the smoke I can honestly say that the Smoke is hands down a better product.
  4. The article I read did not give a lot of information on the sale other the than there would be up to $100 off on select grills.
  5. JDEaston

    Wireless thermometer help

    Thermoworks occasionally puts the smoke on sale for 10-15% off, but you'll likely not catch a deal on it that will bring it down to the price of the 732. If cost is the reason for choosing the Maverick I would look into the Maverick 733. It has a bit better interface than the 732 as well as better range. If I remember correctly it comes with the high temp probes as well. The probes are still a liability but otherwise it's a great thermometer.
  6. JDEaston

    Wireless thermometer help

    I've had two Mavericks (732 and the 733et) and while I liked them I kept having to replace probes and the interface was a pain to use. When Thermoworks released the smoke I jumped on it and love it. For me, it's a much better product than the Mavericks.
  7. I gotta ask, what are you doing eating soap and pine needles?
  8. JDEaston

    Was does no one do lamb?

    I love rack of lamb and believe it would turn out great on a Kamado. It's just hard to find in my area to be honest, otherwise I would cook it on a regular basis. At my local markets/butcher shops you're typically limited to beef, pork, chicken, or seafood if you're looking for fresh protein. Being in Kentucky I'm lucky that I can get fresh seafood, but there is a shop about 15 minutes from me that has it flown in fresh a few times a week.
  9. I'm pretty much in agreement with your theory. I'll add that some wood, such as cherry will actually change the color of certain meats. I love using cherry chunks when cooking ribs because it gives the right smoke profile for me but also adds a nice mahogany color.
  10. JDEaston

    Western Brand Lump Charcoal

    I ended up picking up a bag of this yesterday and out an 8lb shoulder on a little before ten this morning. I didn't plan on changing out the RO lump that was left in my firebox for this cook but that happened by accident. When I went to stir and shake the ash out of the firebox somehow I flipped the charcoal grate and lost most of what was left, so I ended up dumping it all into a bucket and started this cook with a full load of Western lump. Initial observations are that it doesn't burn as hot as RO and it took me a while to get up to temp. Once I had it in the 225-250 range I noticed that after it hit 250 it started dropping quickly, as in the fire was trying to go out. So I had to adjust the bottom damper to keep it from dropping below 225. It's still early in the cook and this is the first time I've used this lump so I'm not writing it off just yet. As of a few minutes ago I have everything stable at 240.
  11. As long as the smoking stone is dry when you do the burn off it can handle higher temps than the actual Akorn can before any damage is done and the Akorn can handle 700 degrees. Cleaning the stone with soap and water will damage it more than the high temp burn off.
  12. It sounds like you're on the right track. There is a learning curve with kamado's as far as temperature control goes but it's a short learning curve and once you have it figured out you'll have the vent settings for whatever temps you want to hold embedded in your brain. For a low and slow cook I always suggest pork shoulder (pork butt) for the first cook. They are really forgiving as far as temperature goes so even if you overshoot your target grilling temp a bit you'll still have good results. One thing to remember, particularly on long low and slow cooks though, is don't get too carried away about holding your target temperature and start messing with the vents prematurely. Once you start messing with the vents during a long cook you're going to be chasing temps the rest of the cook. For instance, if you're target temp for a shoulder is 250 and you had the grill settled in around there prior to putting it on, don't even think about messing with the vents unless you're +/- 25 degrees of your target temp. Even then I would personally wait it out a few more degrees to see if it starts to correct itself.
  13. Bought a bag today to give it a try. There were two pallets and most of the bags on top of the two were taped up so I moved some around and grabbed a bag that hadn't been through the ringer. Haven't opened it yet but I'll fill up the fire box with it tomorrow morning for a pork shoulder cook.
  14. Did you start with a full load of lump? From the picture and knowing how little fuel the Akorn consumes it doesn't look like you did. If you didn't I would suspect that would haveore to do with your fire going out as opposed to the wind direction or any leaks. Anytime you plan on doing long cooks you should start with a full load of lump.
  15. JDEaston

    Reducing Bark on Pulled Pork

    People that like bark typically shy away from wrapping their butts/briskets to help preserve the bark. So I would imagine your plan of wrapping early would certainly work. Just remember that you will also get less of a smoke flavor, so if you do like the smoked flavor you may want to use something like hickory or dare I say mesquite for the few hours you'll be smoking the meat.
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