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AugustusRooster

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  • Location:
    Raleigh, NC
  • Grill
    Akorn
  1. Patio, you deserve to be complimented for your honesty in this matter. Way too many people misuse or neglect their cookers and then go online to lambaste the manufacturer rather than admit their own culpability. Tip of the cap to you and welcome aboard! You'll probably need to replace the top vent O-ring as well as the gaskets. Hopefully that will get your cooker back in service. Keep us posted!
  2. I do not like the taste that regular briqs (such as the ubiquitous Kingsford blue bag) impart to food during a lower/slower cook. I have used all natural briqs (such as Kingsford Competition) in the Akorn with good results. Whatever charcoal/wood combo use use, remember that poultry seems to absorb smoke flavors more so than other meats. So make sure your fire is settled in before adding the bird, and go easy on the smoke wood.
  3. speaking of low and slow...

    I've used Kingsford Competition briqs (they are all natural) with no problems with ash accumulation.
  4. jlb, you're on the right track in a couple of ways. You've already learned that the chimney is a no-go for low and slow temps. And you're smart to take the time and effort to learn how to master temp control. Ceramic Chef would be proud I don't have any pictures to share but can offer this advice. Whether you use the "hole in the middle" or the "divot in the top of the pile" method, always try to make your initial fire as small as possible. Stick by your cooker and observe as the temp starts to slowly climb. About every 25 degrees I'll close both vents a notch. When I'm about 25 degrees short of my target I'll move both vents down to the 1 position. That usually allows my cooker to settle in, but of course your mileage may vary. If you need to make small adjustments then just move the top vent a tiny amount. One more thing. Get away from the thought process of using just the right amount of charcoal. Always fill it up with enough fuel for the cook and then some. Your temp is governed by your lighting method and vent settings, not the amount of charcoal. No reason to risk having to remove everything to add more fuel during a cook. Unless your cooker is defective, closing the vents after the cook will snuff your fire and allow you to reuse the unburned coal in the firebox. Hopefully someone can add some illustrative pics for you.
  5. third party fireboxes

    I believe this is mainly a misunderstanding of semantics. When I think of the "firebox" in a ceramic I think of a smaller bowl shaped piece that sits low in the cooker. Look at pictures of the bge for examples. The "firebox" in the akorn is a much longer removable metal shell that hangs on clips not far below the cooking grate. For the life of me I can't see how those two pieces would be interchangeable between the two types of cookers. But then again I don't have much experience with ceramic cookers.
  6. beer can chick

    I believe those posts were referencing the smaller Akorn Jr model but maybe others can chime in to clarify. At any rate, beer can chicken was a fad IMO, spatchcocking is a much better way to go. Here's Meathead's take on beer can chicken: http://amazingribs.com/tips_and_technique/debunking_beer_can_chicken.html
  7. The interior of the Akorn (and most charcoal grills I know of) is porcelain coated, not painted. As long as you don't have a pile of nuclear hot coals directly touching the interior of the grill you should be fine. As the picture above shows, your fire will still be contained in the firebox.
  8. Would you eat cooked beef left out overnight?

    I'm not a doctor so take this with the requisite grain of salt, but here's my understanding: The live organisms in meat like Ecoli can be killed by cooking. The toxins released by meat spoilage cannot be cooked away. So if the meat spent time in the danger zone the risk can't be reheated away. So it seems it's a matter risk tolerance.
  9. Beer in Water Pan?

    Here's a good recipe that incorporates beer. http://www.thewolfepit.com/2009/10/pepper-stout-beef.html
  10. Question About Bark On Boston Butt

    I'm a North Carolinian so you had me at "vinegar" and sealed the deal with "bark". I'm a big fan of ENC vinegar/pepper sauce. Is that what you use in your mop, or are there other ingredients?
  11. Question About Bark On Boston Butt

    Todd I skimmed over the original post and didn't catch that you were cooking on a Jr. My bad. I'll offer up an idea here and we'll see what the Akorn Jr gurus think: Place a large drip pan on the cooking grate. Use a small metal rack, rolled up foil bumpers, whatever under the drip pan so it's not sitting directly on the cooking grate. If you have a roast/rib rack place the butt on that and set it in the drip pan. By raising the butt up a little bit you should be able to expose it to a little more smoke. Raising it out of the pan will keep it from braising in its own juices and getting mushy on the bottom. And hopefully you'll have edible drippings to add back into the meat if needed. One last thought: the cook is always his own harshest critic. I'll bet your family and friends are delighted with your new hobby
  12. Question About Bark On Boston Butt

    -I love bark too which is why I don't foil during the cook. If you're running behind time-wise just ramp up the heat a little bit. -You've got to learn to resist the notion of pulling slow-cooked meats off at a certain temp. Pull it off when it's probe tender. -I'm assuming you're using a drip pan, right? And raising it up off your deflector so your drippings aren't scorching? If you feel the meat isn't juicy enough you can always add some of you drippings back in as you pull the meat.
  13. Trial Cook and First Cook

    Welcome to the addiction. Judging by those pictures you're off to a great start! Don't try to guesstimate how much charcoal you'll need, just fill 'er up. Some people are under the impression (not saying this is you) that more charcoal = higher temps. But if you use proper lighting and vent management techniques you can easily control temps with a full fuel load without worrying about running out of charcoal. And as previously mentioned, shutting down the vents will leave plenty of unburned coal for reuse, so there's no worries about wastage. Think about it as an automotive analogy. Filling your car with gas before a trip doesn't mean you're going to go flying down the road and get a speeding ticket. Just means you don't have to pull over and get more gas
  14. -I too have found that meats tend to cook faster in a kamado than on other cookers. -I trim the fat cap prior to rubbing. It's too thick to render down into something edible if left on. Trimming gives you another large surface of meat to get the magic combo of rub, smoke and bark. -195 may be a tad early to pull a butt. Certainly check it at that temp but let probe tenderness be your guide. -Your bark was mushy because it steamed off while the meat was wrapped. I personally don't see the need to foil a butt while cooking, but to each his own. And I understand that goes out the window when you need to hold temp afterwards for food safety purposes. On the positive side, it seems you've got your rig dialed in nicely. And you learned to go light on the salt. I'm betting you nail the next one.
  15. How I reconcile the Akorn Jr.

    If you set the pan on the stone make sure it's raised up off the stone a little. Otherwise the drippings will scorch.
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