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    • DerHusker

      The Challenges are Back!   05/08/2017

      Join in on the fun and take this month's "Crack Pot Challenge"     We encourage everyone to challenge yourself to have fun and learn by participating in these "Challenges".    We encourage everyone to challenge yourself to have fun and learn by participating in these "Challenges".   

dh14ster

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About dh14ster

  • Birthday 10/08/1958

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location:
    Wiesbaden-Sonnenberg, Germany
  • Interests
    Cooking better food than I can get at the local bbq places and enjoying myself while I make smiles for family and friends.
  • Grill
    Akorn
  1. Tonight the weather screamed for me to cook something on the Akorn. I haven't made one of our favorites, Caribbean Chicken in a while, so I decided to do it today with some variations. I marinated some chicken breasts in KC Masterpiece Caribbean Jerk marinade with onions and red, yellow, and green peppers. Next i fired up the Akorn, and when I got it to approx. 225*, I threw in a chunk of apple wood and loaded the chicken and vegetables in my grill basket over indirect heat for approx. 45 minutes to give it a kiss of smoke. In the meantime I threw some pineapple slices into the leftover marinade for later. Meanwhile, I added some finely chopped red and yellow peppers, mango, and pineapple to Zatarain's Caribbean Rice mix and set it to cooking. After about 45 minutes, I pulled the chicken and vegetables off the Akorn, opened it wide open and got ready to put everything back on to char it/crisp it up some, one might say a reverse sear. Once the chicken was done, on went the pineapple slices to the grill grates . The result was a nice celebration in Germany of the summer days to come.
  2. Over the weekend I made ground lamb kebabs with Turkish hot peppers and onion relish based on a recipe in Steven Raichlen's Planet Barbecue. I served it with a side of couscous and lavash (Turkish bread) brushed with olive oil and grilled on the Akorn. I live in Germany and there are excellent Turkish restaurants all over, but this is still one of my favorites. These guys are little flavor bombs. If you are looking for something off the beaten path, I highly recommend this recipe.
  3. You got me thinking. I enjoy making traditional American barbecue on my Akorn, but also recipes from other parts of the world. I have made Moroccan lamb, Turkish kebab, Middle Eastern ground lamb, Jamaican jerk chicken, and others, but it never occurred to me to do an Indian cook. Thanks for the post and the idea.
  4. New England Akorn, When I cook steaks, I usually do a reverse sear and it has worked great for me. I try to get a steak as thick as possible, 1.5-2" thick, then treat it like a piece of meat I'm going to smoke. I put the steak in the Akorn at 225 degrees for about 45 minutes, or until the internal temp is approx 110-115*. Then I take them off, open the vents, and remove the top grate and the heat diffuser. I then lay Grill grates (https://www.grillgrate.com/) on the grate the diffuser was on. Sorry if this sounds confusing. When the temp is up to approx 600-700*, on go the steaks, which I flip every couple of minutes to get great grill marks. When done, these are the best steaks I have ever had. Alternatively, and I have done this, too, you can use the Grillgrates to sear the steaks on a gasser if you still have one. v/r Dave
  5. Nice cook from a beautiful piece of meat. Makes me want to throw some on this weekend!
  6. ckreef, it was a lot of work, but you know as well as anyone that the smiles it brings to friends and loved ones makes the effort totally worth it. I promised I'd do it again once the weather gets better. It's been a couple of years since I did anything like this-- I used to when I was back in the States for family events, but they're all back there. Sometimes I almost get a craving to do a big cook, but it's tough with just mama and me in the house. This gave me a good excuse to immerse myself in clattering metal, charcoal dust, smoke and fire.
  7. Thanks, wilpark. I've used the oven, too, and it can really help out. I had read about this method and was curious to try it. A party like this probably not the best time to experiment, but things came out really well in the end, everyone was happy.
  8. Thanks, dsarcher, we did. Folks went through the line a 2d and 3d time, to me that's the biggest compliment one can pay the chef.
  9. TKOBBQ: Thanks for your compliment. It was, and the tournament was a blast! We're already looking for an excuse to have another barbecue, the guys liked it so much. It is definitely a great way to bring people together as well as to bring a little American culinary tradition to some folks who might never experience it unless they came to the States.
  10. This is always such a good meal, not sure what form I like best, but tacos are certainly near the top of the list. As always, well done.
  11. Greetings from Germany! Last week my hockey team, which is a mix of about half American military and civilians, but also Germans, Czechs, Finns, a Brit, an Aussie, a Mexican, and various other East and Central Europeans, traveled to Garmisch-Partenkirchen in Bavaria for a 4 day hockey tournament on the 1936 Olympic ice. The team is appropriately named the Wiesbaden Vikings, so what better way to build camaraderie and team spirit than with smoked meat and lots of [German] beer? The problem was, I have an Akorn, and I was going to smoke around 50 lbs. of meat for approximately 30 people for Saturday night (11 February). This was going to be my greatest cooking challenge so far! Here's what I wound up doing: Most of our European teammates had never had anything like American barbecue, nor could they even imagine it. I wound up cooking 18 lbs. of pulled pork, 18 lbs. of brisket, 5 lbs. of pulled chicken, and 5 lbs. of beef short ribs. It was a huge hit to say the least. But my problem was how do I smoke 50 lbs. of meat on an Akorn (20" cooking surface and an upper rack) and have it ready when people start showing up at 4 pm Saturday? Oh, and I was going to make about 5 dozen ABTs for appetizers. As luck would have it, my neighbor, and teammate, is Czech, but lived in KC for 4 years and fell in love with barbecue. When I mentioned what I was doing, he offered to smoke the chicken and the beef ribs on his rig, along with about 1/2 of the ABTs. So that left me with 3x 6 lb. pork butts and 2x beef briskets to smoke. I decided to employ a modified version of The Wozniak Method (http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_technique/cook_today_serve_tomorrow.html). I figured the pulled pork is probably more forgiving, so I started it Friday at 10 am and smoked it until about 7 pm at 225 until they hit 190* internal. Then I wrapped them in foiled and hit them with ice before putting them in the fridge for overnight. I shut down the Akorn, to clear the ash bin and recharge the charcoal, then fired it back up around 1030 pm. I let it stabilize then at midnight on go the briskets. This guy goes to bed and gets up around 0715. I had the Maverick 732 on the night stand in alarm mode. At around 10 am the butts go in the oven at 225, and at 1300 the briskets hit 203. They went much faster than I expected, so I didn't bother to foil them until I put them in the faux cambro. Then the butts go (wrapped) back on the Akorn because they are not heating up as quickly as I had hoped. By 1600, I was able to take the butts out of the foil and put them back in the smoker to firm up the bark. Guests started arriving as I was putting the butts in the cooler with the briskets to do the faux cambro magic. On went the ABTs, and as folks noshed on ABTS, chips, guac, salsa, magic was taking place. I served the 4 different types of 'cue with KC Classic, Grownup SC Mustard, NC Vinegar, and Texas Barbecue Juice. In the end there was barely enough meat to fill a 1 gallon freezer bag. Our goalie, from the depths of his meat coma, said, "I can't wait to be hungry again."
  12. Oh, man, that looks good! Pizza is one of my favorites on the kamado, and that looks just right!
  13. Unclebergs, "I have a 15" pizza stone in mine for a diffuser. I put the bottom vent on the left side of the 1 opening,and I control the temp with the top vent. Usually just the half moon will keep me at 250 for as long as I want. Low and slow doesn't mean you have to be at 225. I keep a full firebox and light one side,and have no problems." I agree with Larry here, although I use a 15" pizza pan covered with foil and I have not had a problem with airflow as a result. I keep my bottom open to the right edge of the first screw so it is about 1/2 and a half moon on top for steady 225. When I have problems with the fire going out, it is usually after doing multiple cooks with the same charcoal and as the pieces get smaller, they clog the grate and cut off the air supply. You may have that problem-- "2. Are my small pieces of lump part of the problem? (Small like the size of wood chips)." Try cleaning out the small pieces and using some fresh lump and see if that helps. I hope everyone has a great Fourth, I'm looking forward to the posts. dh
  14. Flypops, I've been in this exact situation many times and over time I've come up with a solution that works pretty well for me. I find that breasts don't lend themselves much for pulling, but if you are going to attempt pulling them, I would advise brining them for at least a few hours first. Here is a pretty good recipe: http://www.smoking-meat.com/may-9-2013-smoked-pulled-chicken The first few times I did this I used about 5 lbs. of thighs and maybe 2 lbs. of breasts prepared as described in this recipe. That was pretty good and every one loved it, but I found the breasts hard to pull and they wound up kind of chunky compared to the thigh meat that pulled virtually like pork butt. In fact the first time I gave some to my father-in-law, he couldn't believe it was not pork. I played around with it some and here is what I came up with: I take strictly thighs (3-7 lbs., you can't make too much b/c it goes fast). I rub it the night before just like pork butt. I put it on the kamado at 225 for 1.5-2 hours with a couple of chunks of apple wood, and spritz with apple juice a couple of times. At 2 hours it has soaked up about all the smoke it's going to take, then it goes into an aluminum pan with apple juice and whatever else you want to put in there with it, maybe a sprinkling of rub, and I cover it with foil and it goes either back on the kamado or in the oven for a couple more hours (still at 225). Then I take it out, wrap it in towels and into the cooler, a faux cambro, just like you would a butt. Let it rest, and when you are ready to feast, spritz it some more, splash some sauce on it, pull it like you would pork, and it will be some of the best chicken you've ever had and most people won't know or care that it is not breast meat. This is a barbecue, after all. If folks still need breast meat, then i would suggest marinating some breasts the night before and after the thighs come off, crank the kamado up some and grill them. That's never a bad option, either. Bottom line: Even my picky eaters really enjoy the pulled chicken. Good luck, and I hope you have a great cook! dh
  15. Maxhawk, When I saw your post, it made me go out and buy some of these. I lucked out, Harris Teeter had a pack on the shelf with a deep mark down. Smoked 'em up a couple of weekends aqo, and man, were they good! I hadn't made them in awhile, but your post got me thinking... The first time I made them, my father-in-law took one bite and said, "Son, I think I just died and went to heaven!" They are little smoky flavor bombs that aren't terribly well-known, and I'm not sure why not. Thanks for the post. dh