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SmallBBQr last won the day on March 27 2019

SmallBBQr had the most liked content!

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    Big Steel Keg

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  1. Similar function, I just took delivery of some SumoSprings for my truck...will be installing as soon as weather permits.
  2. That's my go-to method now as well. No more getting up in the middle of the night or baby-sitting the fire. Much easier to time and results are very consistent if you have a fatty enough cut.
  3. I've done picanha (rump cap here) numerous few times now at home, and also had it a few time as part of the menu at pretty good Brazilian steakhouses in different cities, and to be honest, I really do NOT get what everyone loves about this cut, particularly when cooked the way it is traditionally done. I mean it's good, but not crazy good (at least for the price they want). To be honest, I also find most Brazilian steakhouses a little overrated in general too though... To me, it just needs more in preparation. A couple months back we saw it again at a local butcher and picked it up to try again with a different approach. I dry brined it for 24 hours with a heavier than usual amount of rock salt, then dropped it in the sous vide for six hours at 130 - purposely trying to break it down a bit more than usual. Then on to a 600 degree blazing grill for a fast sear and crisp up. All I can say is try it and compare...we enjoyed it much more.
  4. After using my Keg for many years, this is the process I have come to use and works perfectly every time. The keg is extremely finicky as it is too well insulated and hard to get a perfect smoke going. When I want low/slow smoke for ribs, brisket etc, I place 5-6 wood chunks, roughly the size of golf balls, spaced out and spread around, but on the very BOTTOM of the pit. I then stack up the lump all over top of the wood chunks, making sure the bury them well. As mentioned, this seems to make any smoke they produce to have to rise up through the lump and get a secondary burn. I then start a VERY small fire in the middle of the lump using a torch, and let the Keg come up to temp over a VERY long time (over an hour), keeping the oxygen level very low the entire time, and then reducing the vents to my "coast" setting when I hit the desired temp. The fire "creeps" down towards the oxygen source (where the wood chunks are) over time and then starts to spread, which gives me hours of nice clean smoke.
  5. They are insulated, but it's inner metal wall / insulation (not much) / outside metal wall. The heat dissipates very quickly if a fire is not burning - there just is not enough mass to hold it. I think most of the cooking comes DIRECTLY from the heat / fire, unlike a "real" wood fired oven where the stone soaks the heat and radiates it back. All these portable/small ovens are a bit of a cheat... But you can't take your 1500 pound stone oven with you to the campground or park either.
  6. Ceramic is like stone....1000 tiny little taps and you can cut a huge stone in half. Every tiny little impact makes microscopic cracks....and if there was a defect in there somewhere, it would amplify it quickly... Cook looks delicious though!!
  7. I've got the Ooni Pro and love it. Though it's certainly heavier and less portable than I would like...though I've lugged it around a few times. I've made a couple mods to it over the last couple years as well. I added a deflector plate to prevent the crust closest to the fire from scorching so fast (you can see it behind the chicken in the one photo...rippled metal edge). I use it a lot for other grilling too...steak, chicken etc. I use charcoal, wood, and I have the gas burner. Tried the pellets and gave up on that SH!T fast...PITA. For pizza, I detect no real difference between gas and wood/charcoal. 90 seconds in and out it just doesn't have time to pick up flavor IMO...so I use gas now most often for pizza...it's fast, more stable and I don't have to fire tend. Also, hardwood is a bit hard to come by around here, so I save it for the longer cooks. To be honest, for what I use it for now, I would probably get the Karu, though I do love the larger space as well....tough decision. For the $$, and if you are using primarily pizza...I would do the Karu. If you want a SEMI-portable option, which has more capability of a full blown wood fired oven (placing multiple dishes, moving some items close, some further away), the Pro gives you a bit more flexibilty. You can see below the two Ooni sizzer pans, side by side, with even more room if needed. And more vertical space (that is two half-chickens on them).
  8. Wow all...some very beautiful setups. Mine just sits by the garage...I'm too embarrassed to post a photo!! haha.
  9. Basically for the price (it says use half a bottle?!?) it's hard to say...what does it cost? At the local wine making store, I get a KILO of citric acid powder for less that $15...I can probably make about 50 gallons of descaling solution with it...it literally lasts years. I use 2-3 tablespoons per litre (quart) of water....
  10. Not sure if you have a wine or beer making shop or something similar where you are, but you can get bulk citric acid powder very cheap there. Been descaling espresso machines for years with it...
  11. As @DerHusker mentioned in his post, I also have a set of Henckel knives purchases over 25 years ago (Henckel Pro I think...don't remember the exact type at the moment) which are heavily used and other than some slight wear on the edge from numerous sharpenings over the years, are still in amazing condition. They will outlive me for sure. I've easily spent over $1000 on them. I too have a Ken Onion and picked up extra belts for it and love it. The one thing I will say though, is that if I was starting over, my recommendation would be to me - DO NOT SPEND MORE THAN $5 ON A KNIFE! Why.....? In my case, I purchased a small RV/trailer last year and wanted 3-4 knives to throw in it. I happened to be in the thrift shop down the road and they had HUNDREDS of knives hanging there. I picked up a few at about $2 -$3 each, threw them on the Ken Onion for a bit, and they take an edge are every bit as sharp as my $200 knives. Now, will they hold an edge as long...probably not. Are they as "beautiful" as a piece of Japanese steel - NOPE! But I've been experimenting on one with daily use and came to the conclusion that unless you a "pro" level chef chopping non-stop for hours daily, the end result is not much different on the board. So take careful inventory of your end goals....if you want a "showcase" set of knives (that are functional too) and invoke knife envy, then go spend the $$ and love them for years to come, but if you really think spending $500 on knives is going to make chopping the daily, onion, garlic etc. much different...nope (IMO).
  12. Hey all, Just a tip for any instant pot owners out there that are into pizza/bread making and warm proofing. Note...your instant pot must have the yogurt setting for this to work. There are lots of places (i.e. YouTube) to look up the process in more detail and get additional detail, but just an FYI that your Instant Pot is a great dough proofer using the yogurt setting on it's lowest temp setting. One important caution....DO NOT use the pressure sealing lid while proofing...the dough can rise enough to hit the internal button to depress, locking the lid on. Use a slow cooker glass lid if you have one, or just throw a plate on the top.
  13. I know, right? Right, smack in the middle of beef country and prices are ridiculous. This year, I purchased a smaller (2 bone) prime rib, froze it solid and insulated it well, and shipped it off to a friend in New Brunswick as a Xmas gift (along with some wife's baking). They loved it!! So Alberta!
  14. We had an early Xmas dinner this year for a few reasons, but bottom line is I got asked to do the turkey. A beautiful 21 pound bird. I've had so much success with spatchcock chicken, I did a little research on doing this with turkey, and much to the horror of my wife, decided to give it a go (and the results were spectacular). I followed the general procedure shown in the YouTube video below for the cooking - placing the spatchcocked bird on a wire rack over top aromatics, but I also did half the bird in the Keg, on top of aromatics in my 17" cast iron pan. 450 degrees for about 5 minutes per pound, until the breast was 150. The timing was almost perfect for both the oven and Keg. (Please ignore the ugly dissected bird in parts - I was originally going to cook dark pieces on one tray and white on another before deciding to go 50% kamado) Instead of the video prep process of boiling water/dry brine, I used a full water brine for the bird. Thinking I would not get too many drippings, I also spatchcocked the bird a day early, and used the back, neck, and parts (roasted well with veggies etc) to make a huge pot of turkey stock and gravy the day before we ate. That was nice relaxed process and took away any stress in making about a gallon of gravy the day of... The nicest part...I put the turkey halves in the brine at about 8:00am the day of the cook, took them out at around 2:00pm, dried off the turkey and let it rest at room temp until 4:00pm. Got the Keg heated up to 550 (knowing it would drop putting in a huge cast iron pan and bird) and oven pre-heated to 450. At 4:00pm, put in the turkey in both Keg and oven. Almost exactly to schedule, the breasts were 150 degrees just over 1.5 hours later. It was quite amusing and everyone was in shock (especially the "old" people) as they came in and saw the raw turkey on the counter as 4:00 approached. Many said we would not be eating until midnight!! Took both cooked halves out to rest around 5:30 (yes, 21 pound turkey cooked in 1.5 hours!!), and just got all the sides ready over the next 1.5 hours as we chatted, drank, ate appies etc....complete low stress cooking. I moved the turkey from the cast iron pan to rest, gave it a rough scrape, and then left it in the kamado at 400 degrees or so. I had pre-chopped 2 pounds of brussel sprouts, onions, garlic, shallots etc and sauteed them all in there just before eating. Nice little charring, a big hit. We ate at 7:00pm and the turkey was still too hot inside to use bare hands to pull apart (resting always concerns my wife as she thinks it will get cold!) amazingly moist and tender. Dark meat just pulled easily off the bones. I keep telling her that resting meat stays quite hot, but at serving time does NOT need to be hot out of the oven...as long as the gravy is piping hot....she still can't seem to get that. Breast meat was perfect - so moist and tender. General notes: I think I converted at least 10 people to spatchcock cooking and slow cooker stuffing. There was a "fight" over the charred veggies from under the bird (carrots, celery, onion and aromatic herbs) - next time I'm going to add even more, and serve them as a additional side...they were fantastic!! There was very few dripping from the turkey...the aromatic veggies soaked up some and what little there was left (maybe a cup), I added to the gravy. Don't expect much if you go this route. I didn't add any smoking chunks to the kamado half, and the taste difference between oven and kamado was hardly noticeable. Might add some smoke next time to get some greater variance. Skin was super crisp and rendered even without the boiling water treatment shown in the video...I would not bother as I don't see how it could be any better than it was. We made a slow-cooker stuffing instead of in the bird. Pork sausage, cubes, brown sugar, turkey/chick broth, onions, etc. etc. Came out great. Another "wife" concern the stuffing would not be as good...but it was. It was a bit drier by the recipe, but we added some extra stock (made the day before) to get it nice and moist the way she liked it. Had great "in bird" flavor. Also had many people asking for that recipe. Overall process - making gravy the day ahead etc, takes so much stress out of a normally crazy day. Unless you want the "presentation" part of a traditionally cooked bird, I would never do it another way again. Here's the general video I took the cooking process from....
  15. If you have not done one of these sous vide yet...do it. Wow. I took the bone-in pork loin roast, gave it a generous coating of olive oil, kosher salt, black pepper, and herbs de Provence. Into the vacuum bag and souse vide for 7 hours at 140 degrees. Put it into the 600 degree kamado afterwards for 7-8 minutes to crisp up the outside. Incredibly tender and juicy! Wife said it was probably the best pork roast ever eaten, and she is a harsh critic (she knows I prefer honest feedback on everything I cook).
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