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CeramicChef

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  1. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from lnarngr in Pork chop temp and time.   
    I pull pork off the grill between 135°-140° F. That's medium.
  2. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from sfisch in grill grates on the akorn   
    I love my Grill Grates! They are the best thing since pop tops on beer cans!
    I use them for high temp sears on steaks, chops, etc. as the final step in a Finney Method preparation. Wouldn't be without them.
    If you don't have Grill Grates, get some! Once you have them, you'll never be without them again.
    Just my 2 cents worth ...
  3. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Joe M. in What is crazing?   
    Austin is just like Boulder, CO! Both are little pieces of the United Soviet Socilaist Republike of California that didn't make it to the Left Coast! I've lived in both places ... maybe that explains a lot!
  4. Thanks
    CeramicChef got a reaction from JD Alien in Can't control temps on Akorn   
    Bhall7 - welcome aboard! Your problems are very common for new kamado owners and can serve as the basis for some instructive comments. Please understand that what follows is said with the best of intentions.
    Bhall7 it seems to me you've never let your Akorn be a kamado. Kamados are MUCH different than anything you've used before. Let the kamado be a kamado and forget trying to cook on it like you've cooked on everything else! You have to adjust to the equipment you have, not the other way around!
    Any frigging idiot with a heartbeat can get an electric smoker to work. You'll have flat, manufactured BBQ. If that's what you want, read no further. If you want great tasting BBQ that people rave about, that has real depth of flavor, that will be the best food you've eaten, read on.
    This is the simple fact: you don't know what you're doing. So stop flailing around and take systematic control of your kamado by working within its parameters. Take the time and learn what your kamado can and cannot do. You need to invest an afternoon and get to know your cooker. so go buy a 12er of your favorite malt-based adult beverage and a big bag of lump. Your task is to learn how to control your kamado's temp between 225°-450° in 25° increments and do it consistently. You'll need to take notes, so you'll also need paper and pencil. Also remember that you've got to stay ahead of your kamado and anticipate what is going to happen.
    Go fill up your kamado, fill it completely with lump. Light the charcoal in one single spot, and pop the top on your first tall cool one. Once the fire is established, not roaring, close the lid and make certain your vents are wide open. When your kamado's temp hits about 150°, shut your vents, both top and bottom, by about half. At 175°, shut them by half again. At 200° shut them by half again. You don't want to overshoot your target temp. You'll slowly come up to 225°. If you overshoot your temp, shut the vents by half again and let the temp stabilize. Take notes of vent settings and temps. You have to learn the response curve of your kamado. Take a sip of your favorite beverage. This is hot, hard work and you don't want to get dehydrated!
    After about 20-30 mins at 225° you'll want to move on to 250° open both vents just a small bit and see what happens. Take notes. Creep up on 250° and use small incremental steps. Take a sip and sit down and notice how your kamado responds to more air. Be patient, take time and let your kamado stabilize each time you change a vent setting. Take notes, heck take pics if that helps! Repeat this procedure for every 25° all the way up to 450°. You'll be tempted to putz around the yard, organize the workbench, do a quick project your wife has been on your ### for weeks to do ... YOU KEEP YOUR BUTT RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOUR KAMADO and don't do another dadgummed thing but pay attention to your kamado!
    Kamado cooking can be the single most rewarding culinary experience you and your family and friends have, but you have to be willing to learn how to do it properly and get to know your kamado. Like I said earlier, any frigging idiot on the planet can get an electric smoker to work. Also notice that I never referred to the numbers on your vents in the above discussion ... That's because you don't need numbers to dial in temps! If that we're necessary don't you think the manufacturer would have told you that top and bottom vent settings of 1/1 is going to get you 250° and 2/2 will get you 350°, etc? Vent numbers do you no good whatsoever! Invest the time in getting to know your kamado and the rewards will be great.
    Finally, the Akorn has some very well documented deficiencies! You may have air leaks that in your innocent state you know nothing about. Read the 17+ page thread in the Forum about all the Akorn's problems and solutions to overcome the manufacturer's lack of concern for quality control.
    I wish you well and nothing but great cooks and even better memories with family and friends!
  5. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Superman1 in Vision Professional S air leak solutions   
    First off, welcome to Kamado Guru, @doodie110.  
     
    Secondly, the Vision is generally regarded as a really fine cooking machine.  I've not heard of the kinds of problems you're having.  Rest assured, they are not fatal, and most certainly not a deal killer.  Off the bat, I'd be talking with Home Depot and getting another Vision.  Tell them the unit is defective, which it certainly is. 
     
    Thirdly, forget you even have a chimney.  It will create more problems for you than you know.  Learn to light the lump in the fire bowl of your Vision.  I use a propane/MAPP torch.  Very cost effective.  Others here use starter cubes, oiled paper towels, alcohol soaked cotton balls, etc.  The thing here is that just aout everyone lights their fires in the fire bowl.  It's easier, more efficient, etc.
     
    Fourth, completely fill your fire bowl  for every cook.  If you get in the habit of partially filling your fire bowl, I promise it'll jump up and bite you where you sit.  No matter how small the cook, you'll always guess wrong on nom much lump to put in the fire bowl.  And there will be times when that means you'll ruin the cook.  Lump is cheap, cooks are dear.
     
    Fifth, know that the bottom vent is used for gross temperature control and the top vent is used for fine tuning temps.  Thus, you'll set your bottom vent for temps between 200-300° F and the top vent is used to dial in the fine temps, i.e. 225, 250, 275.  The same holds true for temps between 300-400, and 400-500.  Spend a weekend day learning your kamado's response curve to changes in vent setting.  Know exactly which vent settings yield which temps.  Once you have dialed in a specific temp, let your Vision dwell at that temps for about 30 minutes or so.  Finally, this is hot work, so have plenty of your favorite iced adult beverage near by!  
     
    Lastly, really push Home Depot to take back this Vision.  You mentioned a cockeyed ash pan.  Beat them over the head with this.  This shouldn't be the case.  You don't spend the kind of money you spent just to get a defective unit.  and this unit doesn't meet muster, at least in my opinion.
     
    I wish you well.
  6. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Blusmoke in KJ CI vs Grill Grates for Searing Steaks   
    And we're supposed to take serious advice from a gasser and a guy who gave away Grill Grates?  
     
    Note: this is supposed to be light hearted and is in no way meant to belittle any person, place, or thing.
  7. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from dh14ster in KJ CI vs Grill Grates for Searing Steaks   
    I personally have absolutely for Cast Iron grates and KJ CI grates are I different than any other CI grate.  They rust.  All cast iron will rust.  I have use Grill Grates for quite some time and i wouldn't trade for the,.  They're great.  Additionally, you can flip the Grill Grayes over and use the flat side as a griddle.  
  8. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Dogstar in Reverse sear steak problems   
    @reddog90 - too much smokey flavor is generally a direct function of too much smoke wood.  You don't need but maybe a chunk or two.  
     
    When I reverse sear I take my kamado to something like 250°F.  That allows for a gentle climb in temp.  When my steaks hit my target tep, generally 125° or so, I take the steaks off, and I don't wrap in foil.  That does nothing but keep the heat in the,steak and allow for carry over cooking.  You don't want that at all.  Carry over is when the temp continues to climb due to thermal momentum.  
     
    Rather, I remove the Starks and place them under a foil tent.  This allows the steaks to bleed temp off.  I then get my kamado up to 550°-600°F and put the steaks on the searing grill.  I test my temp with an instant read thermometer.  I'll pull the steaks at a temp of about 5°F below my target temp.  
     
    Hope this helps you on your next steak cook.
  9. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from hossra in Komodo Kamado owners advice needed.   
    Hi Gurus!
     
    Just got back in town from Houston.  I've got a major problem down there with an investment and it's gobbling up time.
     
    tinyfish - I have a Komodo Kamado Big Bad 32' grill and wouldn't trade anything for it.  It is the single finest cooker I've ever had, and that includes high end gassers, big time stick burners, a Weber Kettle, and Akron, a Large BGE, a medium BGE, two Primo XL Ovals, and the KK BB 32, aka TheBeast.  I'm so impressed with TheBeast that I'm in the process of ordering a smaller KK, the 19" High Cap.  There are less expensive cookers in the market, but none finer.  The competition has lower price, but remember, you get so much more than you pay for with the Komodo Kamado.  It is in a class by itself.  Those other cookers are good, don't get me wrong. You can can cook better food on the most inexpensive kamado than you could every dream of producing on any kettle, gasser, or stick burner.  TheBeast has made cooking so much more fun and the food really does rise to a level that must be experienced to understand.
     
    I can't add one single word to what @5698K or WilburPan have already written.  If you are serious about wanting to investigate a KK purchase, call Dennis Linkletter.  He has the lightest touch.  He won't pressure you because he knows that his product sells itself.  Dennis knows that the legion KK owners out there will tell you that it is the single finest cooker on the market, not just by a little, but by orders of magnitude.
     
    Don't worry about your wife.  When she see the beautiful KK in your backyard, she'll wonder why you took so long to order it. The KK line of cookers  are the most stunning thing you can put in your backyard.  It becomes the focal point of every summer party you throw!  When she tastes the food that you, and she, if you're smart, cook on that grill, she'll wrap her arms around you and tell you that it's so wonderful she'll let you do all the cooking from now on!  The other thing you need to know is that the KK will convince you to sell your other kamados.  They will become just so much surplus BBQ equipment.  I loved my Primo XL, but after seeing and cooking on TheBeast, I gave the Primo to a friend.
     
    So, my friend, call Dennis.  Give him our best.  You've heard stories about KJ customer service, right?  It's good.  It doesn't even come close to what Dennis offers for support to his customers.  I deal directly with Dennis every single time.  So does WIlburPan and 5698K.  When you buy KK you get Dennis Linkletter thrown in for free.  No other company selling kamados can say that.
     
    If you ever have any other questions, post here, PM 5690k, WilburPan, or myself.  If you want, leave that freeze up there and come on down to some pretty good winter weather here in OKC, OK and well fire up TheBeast and you can cook anything you want for as long as you want to stay.  I've got a spare bedroom and you're always welcome.  
  10. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from hossra in Accessories   
    Freddyj - many of us KK owners use a second charcoal basket as a means of quickly, cleanly, and easily changing out different types/brands of lump. For instance, I use one basket for KK Extruded Coconut Charcoal and one for my FOGO lump. The Coconut Lump is used exclusively for low-n-slow cooks whereas FOGO is used for all other cooks.
  11. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from JeffieBoy in Covered Patio Question   
    Phish - I try not to have an operating kamado under or near any flammable surface. I've seen one house burned to the foundation by a kamado that was forgotten after a cook. The guy was doing a high temp burn and the family went out for icecream only to come home to every fire truck in 20 square miles and no home!
    I'd never put a kamado under anything flammable or next to any flammable surface. Never put your kamado under the soffits of your home or under an enclosed porch overhang. Sooner or later you'll get a big scare at the very least. It only takes one time and you're in trouble! I keep my Primo under a gazebo that I keep anchored on the patio. There are simply too many options to ever make me want to have a kamado under a flammable ceiling near my home. This is especially true when I'm throwing a party and I can get easily get distracted from tending my cook.
  12. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from loki in The random pictures thread...   
  13. Haha
    CeramicChef got a reaction from mr-future in Can't control temps on Akorn   
    Bhall7 - welcome aboard! Your problems are very common for new kamado owners and can serve as the basis for some instructive comments. Please understand that what follows is said with the best of intentions.
    Bhall7 it seems to me you've never let your Akorn be a kamado. Kamados are MUCH different than anything you've used before. Let the kamado be a kamado and forget trying to cook on it like you've cooked on everything else! You have to adjust to the equipment you have, not the other way around!
    Any frigging idiot with a heartbeat can get an electric smoker to work. You'll have flat, manufactured BBQ. If that's what you want, read no further. If you want great tasting BBQ that people rave about, that has real depth of flavor, that will be the best food you've eaten, read on.
    This is the simple fact: you don't know what you're doing. So stop flailing around and take systematic control of your kamado by working within its parameters. Take the time and learn what your kamado can and cannot do. You need to invest an afternoon and get to know your cooker. so go buy a 12er of your favorite malt-based adult beverage and a big bag of lump. Your task is to learn how to control your kamado's temp between 225°-450° in 25° increments and do it consistently. You'll need to take notes, so you'll also need paper and pencil. Also remember that you've got to stay ahead of your kamado and anticipate what is going to happen.
    Go fill up your kamado, fill it completely with lump. Light the charcoal in one single spot, and pop the top on your first tall cool one. Once the fire is established, not roaring, close the lid and make certain your vents are wide open. When your kamado's temp hits about 150°, shut your vents, both top and bottom, by about half. At 175°, shut them by half again. At 200° shut them by half again. You don't want to overshoot your target temp. You'll slowly come up to 225°. If you overshoot your temp, shut the vents by half again and let the temp stabilize. Take notes of vent settings and temps. You have to learn the response curve of your kamado. Take a sip of your favorite beverage. This is hot, hard work and you don't want to get dehydrated!
    After about 20-30 mins at 225° you'll want to move on to 250° open both vents just a small bit and see what happens. Take notes. Creep up on 250° and use small incremental steps. Take a sip and sit down and notice how your kamado responds to more air. Be patient, take time and let your kamado stabilize each time you change a vent setting. Take notes, heck take pics if that helps! Repeat this procedure for every 25° all the way up to 450°. You'll be tempted to putz around the yard, organize the workbench, do a quick project your wife has been on your ### for weeks to do ... YOU KEEP YOUR BUTT RIGHT IN FRONT OF YOUR KAMADO and don't do another dadgummed thing but pay attention to your kamado!
    Kamado cooking can be the single most rewarding culinary experience you and your family and friends have, but you have to be willing to learn how to do it properly and get to know your kamado. Like I said earlier, any frigging idiot on the planet can get an electric smoker to work. Also notice that I never referred to the numbers on your vents in the above discussion ... That's because you don't need numbers to dial in temps! If that we're necessary don't you think the manufacturer would have told you that top and bottom vent settings of 1/1 is going to get you 250° and 2/2 will get you 350°, etc? Vent numbers do you no good whatsoever! Invest the time in getting to know your kamado and the rewards will be great.
    Finally, the Akorn has some very well documented deficiencies! You may have air leaks that in your innocent state you know nothing about. Read the 17+ page thread in the Forum about all the Akorn's problems and solutions to overcome the manufacturer's lack of concern for quality control.
    I wish you well and nothing but great cooks and even better memories with family and friends!
  14. Thanks
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Dave Brown in Can't control temps on Akorn   
    Matt - please, please, PLEASE FORGET you ever saw that video. The Ring of Fire technique is used in drafty stick burners, kettles, etc. Further, I don't remember if there were briquettes used, but like the Ring of Fire, briquettes are entirely inappropriate in kamados. They product too much ash and don't burn very hot.
    You're suffering from a lack of knowledge. We all started where you are now and we made all the same mistakes. I'm going to put this as kindly as I can. Spend time getting to know your Akorn. You need to fill the fire bowl to the tabs with lump, light it in a single spot, and adjust your vents so that you can hit 225°. Ther are a ton of thread here telling you how,to do exactly that. Hit 225° and hold it for half an hour. Then open your top vent a bit and hit 250°. Hold that for 30 minutes. The increase temp by 25° each half hour. Make note of the vent settings. They will not change for as long as you own that Akorn. Go all the way to 450°, hold that for half an hour, and then open it wide and get to 550-600 and sear some steak.
    That Ring of Fire technique is entirely inappropriate to a kamado. Think of it this way. Suppose you had an old junker auto that had a 4 on the floor transmission. That car dies on you and you go buy a new car. It has an automatic 6 speed transmission. Do you really think you'll still be driving that new car with its new automatic transmission by shifting gears like you did in your old junker? Heck no!
    You've got to do your homework. Kamados don't work like kettles, stick burners, or gassers. If you let your Akorn cook like a kamado, you'll be surprised at how much better your cooks taste. I've said it before and I'm saying it again ... I wish the YouTube video you've embedde would die, die, DIE!
    Please stop by the Imtroductions Sections and tell us about yourself. Thanks! We look forward to your posts, especially those with pics of the food you cook on your Akorn!
  15. Haha
    CeramicChef got a reaction from lnarngr in Bad Byron's Butt Rub vs The BBQ Rub   
    Why the heck would anyone buy Bad Byron's Butt Rub? Seriously? Why?
    I can't imagine a single Guru's kitchen that doesn't have every single ingredient in Bad Byron's Butt Rub. I have salt, black pepper, granulated onion, granulated garlic, paprika, and chipolte pepper. Who needs the microcrystalline cellulose? That's just to keep the spices from coagulating. Who among us doesn't have those spices?
    I'd like to hear why anyone would buy more than a single bottle of that stuff. Buy one, replicate the flavor and make your own!
    Bad Byron is laughing all the way to the bank! I can hear my Father now ... "Son, a fool and his money are soon parted!"
  16. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Lydia in Do you clean your top vent? KJ Classic II   
    @fotomatt1 - if you're using Cast Iron, don't use it for high temp cooks, sears, etc..  You'll strip the seasoning right off in a big hurry.  Then you've got to deal with rust and that's no fun.  Been there done that.
  17. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Kamado Draggin' in For CeramicChef.....a question about smoke   
    Howdy Gurus! 
     
    Before I ran off to Dallas for the weekend, I had done a cook with the smoke pot above.  I was smoking a small corned beef for pastrami that turned out quite tasty.  I used coffee wood as shown in the last picture.  
     
    Here is what you get at the end of every smoke.
     

     
    I just dump the charcoal back into the firebox for the next cook.  There are not very many volatiles left so it makes good fuel.  Waste not, want not.
     
    I hope everyone had a wonderful, blessed, and happy Easter!
  18. Haha
    CeramicChef got a reaction from TexasBlues in ckreef's Sunday Night Pizza Thread   
    Charles - did you hear that?  That ripping sound?  That was the seams on my khakis finally giving up the ghost.  That pizza just ruined my diet and it's all your fault.  KILLER cook!  great money shot.    
  19. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from New_England_Akorn in Replacement thermometer ideas?   
    Mike - I don't know of a single good dome thermometer, not one. Don't throw your money away. If you're serious about good BBQ, please get a good dual probe electronic thermometer with temp alarms! I don't know of very many kamado cooks that ever trust their dome thermometers.
    Oh, btw, if you insist on using bimetallics, you do know you should calibrate that thermometer, right? There's a sticky on how to calibrate you should be able to find using the search function.
  20. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from New_England_Akorn in Replacement thermometer ideas?   
    Forget rlacing your bimetallic dome thermometer. Use it for a paper weight! Do yourself a huge favor and get a dual probe electronic thermometer with temperature alarms. Bimetallics are useless in my humble opinion!
  21. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Bred in Temperature Control by Vision Company Owner   
    The essence of the above post is you've got to know the response curve of your kamado. Spend an afternoon learning how to hit 225, 250, 275, 300, 325, 350, 375, 400, 425, & 450. These are the most common temps you'll be using. Keep notes as to vent settings.
    Like everything else in life, mastery requires practice. Spend an afternoon mastering your kamado and you'll never regret it.
  22. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Blusmoke in The random pictures thread...   
    This was this past Spring here at ChezChef.
     

     
    God bless America!
  23. Thanks
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Dub in New vs. old cast iron   
    pkinetics - I don't think you'd get the same results and here's why.
    Flaxseed oil creates its nonstick surface by what we chemical engineers call a heat catalyzed polymerization reaction. Bonds are actually created not only across layers, but BETWEEN layers in this case. Thus you have 3 dimensional stability in the seasoning. :D
    Bacon grease simply is a homogeneous mixture of different compounds that have different physical properties. Thus you'll have different compounds trying to link at different temperatures and that generlly will lead to structural instability between layers. :(
    As for the author's assertion that only organic lfaxseed should be used, I don't know. The only place I buy my flaxseed oil is at the local health mart and the only reason for that is because it is closer than the local supermarket! :D
    But I can tell you that since I learned about flaxseed oil and its properties from a former girlfriend (a classically trained chef) my cast iron is absolutely the envy of all my friend's wives! Everything I own has a beautiful black, high gloss finish! :D
  24. Like
    CeramicChef got a reaction from EZ smoke in Top vent rain mod ideas?   
    @mrzippy - you are worried about a non issue.  I live on the Guld Coast for years, kept my kamados in the open, exposed to rain during many cooks, and never once worried about rain.  Remember, water and oil/grease don't mix.  You're not losing any lubrication and the amount of rain going through the top vent is deminimus.  All these rain vent contraptions are merely a solution in search of a problem.  Just stop being so anal and cook on!  Save the money and but some great meat.  Enjoy.
  25. Haha
    CeramicChef got a reaction from Dub in Salt in Diet   
    Recent publications from the Framingham Research Study seem to indicate that people who eat less than 2300 mg of salt have higher mortality and higher blood pressure than those who eat something at or above 4000 mg.  Salt is salt.  All the rest is nothing but different minerals that are regionally dependent.
     
    Salt, it turns out is NOT the enemy.  Same with eggs and cholesterol.  
     
    Just live moderately and enjoy life.  In the end, we're all dead.
     
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