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Everything posted by jark87

  1. Be sure to check out SmokingMeatForums, too. https://www.smokingmeatforums.com/forums/ The Smoked-Meat forum mentioned above also looks good. Activity on it appears to be similar to this site. SmokingMeat seems to be more active. My observations are based on perusing threads and looking at activity of recent posts. Of course, if Mike can find John a way to continue KG, this site has it going on!
  2. Out of curiosity, what’s your own brand? Man Cave Meals? I’ve seen some of the YT videos and see that the link at the bottom of your message is a FB page. Anything else out there? I avoid FB but will subscribe to your YT channel (if I haven’t already.)
  3. Same here. I hadn’t tried in a couple of weeks because I couldn’t get on. Yesterday, I was able to get on, but not log in. All is working fine today. There are some subtle differences that I’m noticing, like quoting your post above. When I chose to quote, a small pop up window came up, which is new, at least for me. The site has been quirky for several months, where the side panel of current posts resides. It sometimes would display and other times not. Sometimes, I could turn my iPad from landscape to vertical and then it would appear and remain when going back to landscape mode, but usually it just wouldn’t display. Gremlins.
  4. Maybe the subject matter is too narrow, but that’s what attracted me. Too bad, as I’ll miss the site. There are a number of non-Facebook forums that seem to be doing well, but their focus is much broader so they have much more activity (Golfwrx, Trouble Free Pools, Early Retirement, etc.) Even though I only found this site a little over a year ago, the Guru had become my go-to resource for kamado cooking and I enjoyed the exchanges with other kamado enthusiasts. Like several others, I just don’t do FB, so I’ll have to find another site. @philpom, I was browsing a DIY teardrop site recently and saw some of your posts. If I can remember it, I’ll try to follow your build there! If you read this, send me a PM with the site name so I can find it easier. @Jack., thanks for your many inspiring seafood cooks! I’m much more comfortable with seafood now and that’s in large part due to some of your posts. @Boater, thanks for the on-line seafood recommendations. I still haven’t used them, but I’m glad this site finally came back up as I have them saved in a message for future use. @MikeRobinson, thanks for all of the reminders to use thermometers in building a consistent and repeatable process for successful cooks. @Alan Yves, I hope the KJ cart worked out for you. It was nice meeting a fellow Guru member in person. @A.O., I think I came across some of your posts on Trouble Free Pools. There’s a smoking/grilling thread on that site that’s pretty active. Join in! And of course, thanks to @John Setzlerfor the site! The true value of sites like these is in the members themselves. If any you have recommendations for another site, please post it here before the Guru signs off for good. I may end up opting for the Amazing Ribs forum. I use the site often for recipe and thoughtful, scientific research.
  5. That’s odd. It’s hard to dry out a pork butt because there’s so much fat in them. I cook at a higher temp - usually at 300° - and I cook to an internal temp of 205°, or whenever the blade bone moves easily. I don’t use a water pan and rarely wrap, except to put it in the cooler once pulled off the KJ. Given all of that, seems like your cook would be even juicier than mine. I do mop with an apple cider vinegar sauce, but I just started doing that for the past few pork butt cooks. I don’t think I’ve ever had a pork butt dry out on me. The cooking definitely continues in the cooler, but I can’t imagine that’s what’s causing it to get dry, as juices also tend to reabsorb during the rest period. I’d suggest that you check your dome thermometer, but it looks like you had a meat probe in during the cook and only cooked to 195°. If your fire was actually hotter than 250°, you would have hit 195° much sooner than 12 hours. I can get to 205° in about 6 hours when cooking at 300°. The only other thing I can think of is the placement of your deflectors. You say you have them on the middle part of the D&C. I usually use the SloRoller for any cooks below 400°, but when I do use the deflectors, I place the accessory rack at the lowest level and then place the deflectors on top of that. I think that would put the deflectors lower than what you described and might cut down on the hot air circulation. But since your cooking temp was 250°, I don’t know that it would solve the problem. Head scratcher.
  6. From what I’ve read, the parts most at risk with high heat are the gaskets. As long as those are in good shape and sealing well, I’m sure your KJ is fine. I need to do a high heat burn in my KJ, but I wasn’t thinking about that when I built the covered kitchen. We kept the cover low for aesthetics, but now I have a really nice wood ceiling that’s only about 4’ above my cooker. On cooks 350° and lower, the heat doesn’t reach the ceiling, but I worry about a 600°+ clean burn. I’ll have to do it at some point!
  7. I’ve often wondered about slow cooking burgers. Assuming the patties are thick enough, the reverse sear technique could be used to firm them up and get a bit of a crust. I tend to cook burgers medium well, so there would be less of a concern over overcooking the center, like there is with a medium rare steak. Nice post as we head into prime slow cooking season!
  8. Yeah, Amazing Ribs is my go-to resource for technique/process. I love the scientific explanations that support their recommendations, which for me, separates them from the pack of all of the backyard grillers with a YouTube channel. As much as I love his Memphis Dust recipe, that Simon and Garfunkel rub just doesn’t do it for me, though.
  9. When all of our kids, nieces and nephews were still at home, my sister would provide the turkey and I’d cook a brisket or ribs. Now, only my son and his wife live locally and the only protein she eats is poultry, so turkey it is. It’s usually the only time I cook turkey and I do enjoy the cook. I’ll have to look into Cornish hens. Never had them before.
  10. The story seems to have legs, pun intended. When prices crashed back in ‘19, turkey producers scaled down. Then the pandemic hit, causing even more decline in production. Avian flu has killed over 7m turkeys so far and continues to spread. All of that adds up to fewer turkeys. I haven’t tried to order one yet from our butcher, but am prepped for sticker shock. Might have to just go with the best I can find in a grocery store.
  11. Grilled up some Oklahoma onion burgers yesterday. Sliced the onions paper thin on the mandolin slicer and then salted them to draw out the water. Let them sit in a strainer over a bowl for a couple of hours and then squeezed out even more water. Getting my them as dry as possible helps to grill them instead of steaming them. Rolled up 3oz balls of ground beef and got the cast iron griddles up to 600° on the gasser. Put the balls of beef on the griddle, topped them with a healthy helping of onions, smashed them flat and seasoned them with salt, pepper and garlic. Cook for a minute or 2 on each side. Top 1 patty with cheese and serve as double patty burgers. Delicious!
  12. ^ This. I like to get my fire going before adding wood chunks. And after adding chunks to the hottest part of the fire, I wait until I see them combust before putting deflectors or SloRoller in. This ensures a clean burning fire that puts out great smoke flavor with no bitterness or overpowering smoke. I used to bury the wood chunks at the bottom of the charcoal basket, but too often found them smoldering instead of burning cleanly.
  13. I don’t know that I ever officially made it onto the pizza train, but I also go long periods between pizza cooks. Could be that we have some very good pizza shops nearby.
  14. No idea. Duck has quite a bit of fat, so it may not be necessary, but I can’t imagine that it would hurt. I’ve only cooked duck a couple of times, so I’m no expert. Sounds like some good eating!
  15. jark87

    RV build

    Looks fantastic! What’s that hatch in the rear? Storage?
  16. Good luck on your turkey cook! I’ll see if I can get the dressing recipe from my wife. I don’t know how much is written down vs. just in her head.
  17. Speaking of stuffing, being from the south, our tradition is cornbread dressing. My wife has a multigenerational recipe that she has perfected over the years. It takes a couple of days to make it - smoke the chicken, cook the cornbread (homemade of course), mix all the ingredients together and let them marry overnight. If there’s no frozen chicken stock available, add a day for making that. Then bake on Thanksgiving day. By far my favorite dish of the day. I’m already salivating!
  18. I was planning to dry brine and then I remembered the buttermilk brine. Since I had already started the dry brine, I didn’t add any salt to the buttermilk brine. That buttermilk brine is exquisite! I got it from the Salt Fat Acid Heat book. Even though it got up to 90° here in DFW yesterday, overnight temps are low enough to feel fall creeping in. Looking forward to getting my turkey on for Thanksgiving!
  19. Perfect fall weather in Texas for a spatchcock chicken. Did a quick dry brine (only an hour) followed by 20 hour buttermilk brine that included maple syrup, onion and garlic powder. I made my own buttermilk using whole milk and white vinegar. Seasoned with Malcom Reed’s The BBQ Rub, Lane’s Scorpion Rub and Salt Lick’s Dry Rub. Cooked indirect at 350° for about an hour. When I used the instant read probe, juice squirted out like from a squirt gun! Skin is nice a crisp. Can’t wait to dig in!
  20. That looks outstanding! A perfect cook for cooler fall weather. I’m trying to piece together your process. Looks like you smoked the shank, shredded the beef and then cooked the beef and veggies before adding them into the pie crust. What’s that beef and veggie cook part all about? If not for the pictures, I would have thought baking the pie would have been sufficient for the beef and vegetables. I’m always on the lookout for interesting cooks like this. Well done!
  21. After owning and cooking on almost every type of grill/smoker, including an inexpensive but solidly built offset, I’ve come to the conclusion that the smoker itself has very little to do with the end result. While I had some good times with my offset, as you note above, babysitting the fire becomes tiresome. There was a time when I really enjoyed the process, but holiday meals, like turkey, became more of a chore than a passion. But I appreciate that many still enjoy it. When a good cut of meat is properly seasoned and cooked, I’ve found I can produce the same results regardless of smoker, be it offset, Weber Kettle, drum smoker, pellet grill or kamado, with ceramics having a bit of an advantage with moisture retention. For me, it’s more about convenience. The kamado provides a very similar “set it and forget it” experience as a pellet grill without worrying about when the electronics will fail. If you want to try to achieve a higher combustion rate on your kamado, check out @Smokingdadbbq’s double indirect method. He uses the Kamado Joe with the SloRoller plus deflector plates, allowing for a hotter and thus cleaner burning fire. I’m not familiar with the Akorn, but I assume you could do something similar with multiple sets of deflector plates.
  22. I can’t believe I forgot to take a picture! I smoked the cream cheese using cherry wood chips in a pellet tube, so temp never registered on the dome thermometer. I used what I had on hand for the sauce, so I substituted fig preserves and a jalapeño pepper and cut the bourbon to 1/8 cup because my jar of preserves was small, but kept the rest of the recipe intact. Turned out superb - received a number of compliments! Thanks for the recipe, John. It’s a simple but fantastic appetizer for a party.
  23. jark87

    RV build

    @philpom - any update on your project? Wife and I are hitting the road in a couple of weeks heading to Santa Fe, Moab, Zion and Grand Canyon. We’re staying in hotels, but when planning the trip, I started craving the camping scene again and thought of your build out.
  24. I have a tailgate party coming up this weekend and have limited time to make anything. I think you just gave me the answer! I love the presentation in the cast iron skillet, too!
  25. That is a fine looking tomahawk! Great job with the reverse sear - edge to edge perfection! Reverse sear is the only way to cook steak, IMO.
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