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  • Location:
    Wake Forest, NC
  • Interests
    Cooking/Grilling/Smoke, Guitar, Christianity, other stuff
  • Grill
    Kamado Joe

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  1. Thanks all. I was also considering the KJ basket. I'm in no hurry in any case. I think I prefer the simplicity of the KAB design versus the OEM, but still could be swayed. I guess I'll go for one of these soon enough and not sweat the durability - it seems the current version is good enough to warrant a 3 year warranty in any case. Appreciate the advice. -Andrew
  2. 2.5" should be fine for reverse sear. I have done steaks around that thick (or even closer to 2") and it took closer to 45-60 min to hit 110 (though I have been shooting for 115 lately). Have you calibrated the thermometer for the dome of the cooker? How long did you sear them after they rested and you got the grill hot? The secret that helped me crack the reverse sear method was not to worry about the temperature after the initial smoking phase. Like I mentioned, I go to about 115 then pull them when I get the grill good and hot. Once we're in the ~550 range (very loosely... could be 500, 600 - just good and hot), I throw the steaks on for 1 minute per side (dome down). After that they come off - I DON'T CARE what the instant read thermometer says. When I used to care, I would get readings that seemed too low (factoring in some carry over - but not enough!), and I'd keep them on another minute or 2 or 3. Big mistake that resulted in overcooked steaks. And, yes, my instant read is a Thermapen that I have tested for accuracy very recently. Mine come out nice and medium rare now. If you only want to go to 110, maybe you need 90 seconds per side or so? I dunno - you can definitely play with the variables, but I the point is that it's very easy to overcook the steaks during the sear phase if you pay too much heed to temperature readings. -Andrew
  3. Thanks guy. Maybe I should switch to the toothpick test and start checking a lot earlier. I'll give it a go. -Andrew
  4. You can buy KABs on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/stores/Kick+Ash+Basket/page/B8E311D8-25B2-4CB3-BB55-18E77B9C9A0C?ref_=ast_bln https://www.amazon.com/Kick-Ash-Basket-Stainless-Diameter/dp/B079BYD9F5/ref=sr_1_9?crid=3QII5NXTS60UV&dchild=1&keywords=kick%2Bash%2Bbasket&qid=1594143542&sprefix=kick%2Bash%2Caps%2C168&sr=8-9&th=1 Fair enough - I am willing to accept that nothing lasts forever. My questions were about the stainless version versus previous versions in terms of durability, as many of the older reviews claim a very quick deterioration of the material, and I was curious if that was due to the pre-stainless version or if it the stainless version is just as likely to deteriorate quickly. Also was curious about the handles causing issues with the fire box ring when taking it out. -Andrew
  5. I use the "tear test" - if I can pull them apart easily, they are done. They never look close to done before 4+ hours when I do them at 225-250. If you are getting them done in 3-3.5 hours, what temp are cooking them at? How do you check for doneness? -Andrew
  6. I am thinking of biting the bullet and getting a Kick Ash Basket for my Big Joe II. The Amazon reviews show a lot of complaints about rusting. Does this still occur with the stainless steel version? Many of these reviews seem a little older, so I suspect it's the older steel basket. Alternatively, does anyone know when they switched over to the stainless steel design? Also, one review mentioned that the handles can accidentally dislodge the fire box ring when coming in an out. Can any address this issue? Is it true? If so, could I simply bend the handles in a bit to avoid the problem? -Andrew
  7. In addition to the obvious, I like the fact that I can get a lot of food on half of the D&C with the Big Joe, so I can, e.g., easily reverse sear or use a 2-zone setup without having to reconfigure grates or deflectors. You could do this on a Classic too, but you have a lot less space that you are now effectively cutting in half. -Andrew
  8. I have been using wired temp probes since April or so on my BG II with no issues at all. -Andrew
  9. I use the Big Joe II, and have not had issues with excessive movement when brushing. -Andrew
  10. Hi there folks. I've been using a Big Joe for a few months now. I've had tons of success with pork butt and reverse sear steaks and chops. Baby back ribs seem to be less than stellar. I've done them twice. Background - I used to do low/slow (225-250) baby backs rolled up vertically on my Weber Smokey Mountain. I never used to wrap them, and they always came out smokey, tender, and juicy. Can't do that on my Joe. Here are my 2 runs at them: First time: tried 3 half racks naked, and 3 half racks where I did the 3/2/1 method, with the 2 hour phase of the latter wrapped (meat down) with some liquid and then in sauce for the last hour. It was a comparative experiment. Wrapped ribs came out OK - tender and juicy, but not much smokiness or bark. The naked half racks were dry. I attributed this to the extended time on the smoker. Second time: 3 racks, laid out horizontally, dry rubbed. I did mop with liquid ever 30-45 minutes after the first 2 hours or so. I waited for them to be tender enough to tear easily, but after 5.5 hours they were still not too tender, but were clearly getting dry so I pulled them. I found they were OK for smoke flavor (not as much as with the WSM), but they were a bit dry. So I am trying to figure out how to get juicy, tender, and smokey on the Joe. Here are my ideas: - Maybe I should go rolled up horizontally? Any magic in that other than space saving? I didn't think so, but easy enough to try. - Should I use a water pan underneath as I did with the WSM? I keep reading how you don't need water with ceramic smokers because they are so tight, but my results show otherwise. - Did basting/mopping remove the smokiness? I could easily go back to spraying them. - Is the Kamado just better with the wrapping methods? 3/2/1 or 2/2/1? I don't want to lose the bark/smoke as I did last time, so maybe try it again but go bone side down when I wrap instead of meat side down? - Maybe cook them using the fast method (saw John's video recently) at 350? I've read the Raichlen's BBQ Bible and he does ribs like that. Would probably prevent drying, but would they get smokey enough and tender enough in 1.5-2 hours? - Something else? Would love to hear your thoughts if you've got a good method or thoughts about my suggestions. I can't quite figure out why it isn't the same basic method I was so successful with on the WSM. Note that I am not into sauced ribs nearly as much as non-sauced. I know my temps are correct with a calibrated dome thermometer and digital probe attached to dome thermometer. -Andrew
  11. Clever and cheap solution! I can't say I have a problem brushing the grates without this solution in place, but if it works for you, great. -Andrew
  12. It seems to me that if you watch Costco specials, you will regularly see the Classic II for $999 and the Big Joe II for $1599 (which is what I scored several months ago). I have also seen the KJ Big Block 4 x 20lb bags for $80 a couple of times. If you are patient, these seem to the correct current prices for these grills. You could, of course, pay list lots of places and at lots of times, but I'd bet these deals recur fairly regularly. I haven't seen Costco offer the IIIs yet, at least not on sale (and perhaps not at all). -Andrew
  13. Ha, no - my kid named her when she was into Greek mythology - Persephone ("Sephy"). I do love the java though. -Andrew
  14. Left/Right here, but I just like the symmetry of it. I never tried the other way. I do alternate which is the direct / indirect side though, only to wear the thing evenly. -Andrew
  15. Interesting idea, and more interesting that people are actually doing it! I've been roasting my own using a dog bowl and heat gun for years, but this is intriguing. -Andrew
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