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About El_Norteno60

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location:
    Ottawa, Canada
  • Interests
    Music, espresso-based coffee, exceptional whisky, languages, travel, great food
  • Grill
    Kamado Joe
  1. As long as we're sharing Joe Junior cooks... I came home to do my second one tonight. Was dreaming of doing boneless chicken breast stuffed with feta and spinach, but we were out of spinach Quick lateral thinking, and I stuffed 'em with blue cheese and oregano, tied 'em up and dusted 'em liberally with a rub that I concocted for salmon. It actually only took about 15-20 minutes to get up to 375F today, and 20 minutes on each side, and they were wonderful and juicy: The gooey puddle on the bottom is a combination of roast chicken juices and volcanic blue cheese filling . The verdict was "worth doing again." We're both really impressed with this little grill.
  2. So far (after one cook!), I would have to agree. I haven't noticed that it's any faster to get going than my Big Joe, but maybe I need to alter my lighting method, as further up this thread someone claimed they get it grill ready in 15 minutes. I HAVE noticed that it cools in literally a quarter the time that the Big Joe takes, and I like that. I am looking forward to many hours of fun and smokey goodness with this baby. Thanks again for the advice.
  3. Panchango, you're inspiring me with this kind of cook! You got these results on the Joe Junior again? Well done (for a medium rare)!
  4. You guys are all a bad influence... Got myself a decent deal on a Joe Junior yesterday and did a hickory smoked spatchy on it tonight. I've actually been trying to get a crisper skin on it with the kamado, but until tonight, I hadn't found the solution. I've been smoking at 275F for about an hour and a half and getting the juiciest, most delicious results of my life, but my wife likes her chicken better done, and I was losing the kamado cooking argument because of that. Tonight, I smoked it for about 45 minutes at 350F, then gave it a 15-minute blast at 400F to finish it off. It obviously wasn't as juicy, but it was every bit as flavourful, and I proved that I could kamado cook a chicken that we would both love. We both agree that the Joe Junior is likely to see a lot more use than the Big Joe, with just the two of us most nights. Thanks for your advice, folks!
  5. I'm not a pro chef, just a foodie and a fan of quality in anything I buy. Thanks; I'll check out the chefknives forum.
  6. I'm fascinated by high quality knives that both feel great to use and keep their edge well. I had never heard of the Miyabi line before this thread, but they look gorgeous, and to read all your comments, they're a real pleasure to cook with. But with so many flavours on offer, how do you decide what you want? Obviously, hand feel is huge, but in terms of materials/crafting, I'm a real neophyte. When people start referring to Rockwell hardness, etc., they lose me... Those of you who own premium knives, what do you look for in terms of the materials, forging techniques, etc.?
  7. Smokey1 says he got his at soapstoneproducts.com; you might want to see if they've got one the size you want. Thanks to you and Panchango for your perspectives and the benefit of your experience.
  8. Soapstone is pretty heavy; you may want to consider that in the equation, too. Mine is only 3/4" thick, and I am an average size guy with an average physique. It's not a strain to move the stone in and out of the house between cooks, but I personally wouldn't want anything bigger/heavier than what I've got. I assume that you are correct in that a thicker stone will need more time to heat up, but it will also likely retain the heat longer. Given that my BJ already takes four to five hours to cool down, I don't see any advantage to a stone that takes longer than that to be able to handle comfortably. Thicker may be more durable (I don't even know if that's the case or not), but there will be trade-offs, and I've had my stone at 550F with no discernible damage. Not sure I'd want to sear with soapstone, but more experienced kamado chefs may like to weigh in on that. That's the only time I could foresee needing to go higher than 550F.
  9. I've got a Big Joe and am beginning to think that a Joe Junior might suit me better for most cooks (it's just two of us now)... yeah, it doesn't take long for "the addiction" and the toy collecting to start . Do you find that the Joe Junior's quicker to get up to temp, given there's less lump to heat and a smaller internal area? I also assume that your lump consumption goes WAY down, which is one of the things motivating me to think about going small. The other thing I'm wondering about is the top vent... I imagine you can't cook when it rains, given that the daisy wheel on top has to be open at least a little. What's your experience on all these things?
  10. Tell me if you don't love it after you've used it a few times. I've thought about the handiness of a soapstone halfmoon, but for the price difference, not having to buy an additional pizza stone, etc., I'm sold. Enjoy, Smokey!
  11. Never too early to start knocking things off your bucket list. Good for you!
  12. I've never heard of that, but it does make sense. The longer/darker you roast the beans, the more you reduce their moisture. Therefore, a darker bean with less humidity/water content would be lighter than a lighter bean that has retained more of its moisture. It follows that a pound of dark coffee weighs the same as a pound of light coffee (remember the old joke, "what weighs more, a ton of bricks or a ton of feathers?"); therefore there would be more beans in a pound of dark roast than in a lighter roast. As a side issue (little known and almost useless fact), the caffeine in coffee beans is also related to the water content. People sometimes confuse the intensity of flavour in a very dark coffee with its "strength"/caffeine content. Many people think that a stronger tasting coffee is higher in caffeine, but in reality, as we've just discussed, the darker the bean, the lower the level of humidity, and therefore the lower the caffeine content. When you roast beans, you evaporate the caffeine with the water in the bean. The result is more intense flavour with less caffeine in your cup. Who'da thunk, right?
  13. Your chicken looks gorgeous. Good one!
  14. Those beans look wonderful. I tried roasting my own a number of times on the stovetop, as I've got a friend who's been doing this for years with great success. Mine, I'm afraid, were less than spectacular, and I went back to buying them. I'm strictly an espresso drinker, and for me, it's all about getting quality fresh beans and using a reliable burr grinder (you can't produce drinkable espresso with anything less). I have also found that the best and freshest beans are locally roasted beans, and I don't care what logo's on the package; I look at the "roasted on" date, not the "best before" date and make sure I've got something that's been roasted within the last few days. As a result, I drink what I consider to be superb espresso with beans that cost me C$17 a kilo. For about four years now, my days have started with two heavenly black doppios from this baby: Anyone who's into kamado cooking understands that you get what you pay for in equipment, and sometimes you need to invest a little $$$ to get the pleasure you're looking for. The cost of an espresso setup is not negligible, but neither is a good kamado, so you're likely already on that wavelength... Can't recommend an espresso machine and great burr grinder enough. But remember, the GRINDER is the star of the show, NOT the espresso machine. Ask anyone who knows about espresso equipment, and they'll tell you to start off with a budget that puts at least 50% of your money into the grinder. Cheers, fellow coffee fans!
  15. Yes indeed. Fun place with way too many tempting toys and good advice on many styles of BBQ cooking and equipment. You got one out west, too?