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MartyDevereux

Temp spikes when opening lid

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Hi,

 

Debut post so a very special moment.  Recently migrated from a Weber Kettle to a Kamado Joe Classic II.  Love it.  During the low and slow cooks I have run into temp spikes when I have opened the lid to wrap or boat the meat.  For example I will have the dome temp running consistently at 250F and then will open the lid for maybe 10 seconds to remove the brisket / short rib to wrap etc.  I have not been closing the lower vent when I do this which may be the issue.  Once I place the meat back on the temp has been increasing to 320 - 340F which leads me to taking the meat off until I can bring the temp back down.  Any ideas?

 

Marty

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1 hour ago, MartyDevereux said:

Hi,

 

Debut post so a very special moment.  Recently migrated from a Weber Kettle to a Kamado Joe Classic II.  Love it.  During the low and slow cooks I have run into temp spikes when I have opened the lid to wrap or boat the meat.  For example I will have the dome temp running consistently at 250F and then will open the lid for maybe 10 seconds to remove the brisket / short rib to wrap etc.  I have not been closing the lower vent when I do this which may be the issue.  Once I place the meat back on the temp has been increasing to 320 - 340F which leads me to taking the meat off until I can bring the temp back down.  Any ideas?

 

Marty

 

 Sounds to me like your initial fire is too big. Start with a smaller fire- does not mean less lump. If you allow the Joe to come up to ttemp slower and lit in maybe one or two places- it is always easier to control. When doing ribs last Friday, my temp would drop when the Joe was opened. After closing, it would come back to temp within a couple of minutes and probably far less time. I could and did at times leave it open for a minute or more without it blazing.

 

The second thing I run into is if the lump contains a lot of smaller pieces, little chips and possibly even dust. That stuff is like kindling really and blazes easily. Hope this helps

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Great advice, thank you.  Looking back at the two incidents I would have brought the dome up to temp quickly as opposed to gradually.  Also contributing to this would be the nature of the lump.  There would have been plenty of small pieces amounting to kindling.  Thanks again.

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If you left it alone and didn't worry about the temperature spike  (don't touch the vents) it would have come back down on it's own. 

 

You let in oxygen the coals flared up. Once you burned up the extra oxygen it would have leveled back out. Even if you were up towards 300* when it leveled back out you're meat (and you) wouldn't have noticed a difference. 

 

Eventually you'll go with the zen of the cook. You'll stop playing with the vents and worrying about the little stuff. At that point you'll start having stress free cooks. 

 

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Yes, due to the style of cooking with a ceramic a lot of it is instinctive. Luckily most people pick it up pretty quickly. 

 

Don't sweat the little stuff like playing around with vents when you need to open the lid. Get in, get out quickly and you'll be fine. 

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I'd worry about a temperature spike to that extent. I definitely recommend John's videos on the YouTube KJ Cooking channel. Watching a variety of their recipes and how they prep the grill for different temps really helped me along.

 

People tend to point out that the kamado is hard to lower the temp on once you've overshot your target but the same needs to be said about your fire. You can't get the coals raging hot to bring the grill up to temp then expect to rein them in quick enough to just hold temperature. For a low and slow, light your charcoal in one place and once a coal or two is going ease it up to temp making sure the ceramic slowly heating up keeps pace with your thermometer temp. 

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17 minutes ago, SeaBrisket said:

... You can't get the coals raging hot to bring the grill up to temp ...

Unless you want raging hot Kamado. My new mantra is: build a smaller fire... build a smaller fire... build a smaller fire... 

 

I'll let you know when it sinks in.

 

Frank

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10 hours ago, fbov said:

Unless you want raging hot Kamado. My new mantra is: build a smaller fire... build a smaller fire... build a smaller fire... 

 

I'll let you know when it sinks in.

 

Frank

 

Don't worry it will eventually sink in. Now this doesn't mean use less lump (always fill it up to start out). This means only let a little bit catch fire. The slower you bring it up to temperature the easier it will be. Once you learn your kamado really well you'll have success bringing it up to temperature faster. 

 

 

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I certainly have had temp spikes. Lighting a lot of lump as has been said is a problem. 

 

So can lighting a fire and opening to baste at 15 minute intervals or cooking at 300.

If you have a small bed of coals and you open the dome not much will happen.

If there is a big bed of coals just simmering then opening the dome can turn them on from idle to roaring.

If this happens-- from my experience then you have to tighten the air. Once the coals take off they can pull more air through the same vent settings and hijack the temp.

 

I do cook different. Take ribs. I cook them at 300 direct for 1 hour 45 on the extension rack. Then I baste with apple, soy, and bourbon at 15 minute intervals.

I do not want a temp spike that will blacken the high sugar rub. Even pulling the ribs and basting and then putting them back on can create a spike. I have learned to work with it.

If you see a whole bed of glowing coals then you are going to have to take a tight approach to the temp.

I manage to get  very good results and have my ribs off in under three hours. The basting gives a deep flavor and IMO is worth it.

 

However a spike to 400 has made the sugar in the rub go black. With a high sugar rub i do not want above 325 but 350 briefly can work.

 

Cooking indirect at 225-250 or 275 with the diffuser in place to slow air flow is a whole different thing. In that case then leaving the vents alone will bring things back down. This is the way most people do it and it assures success.

 

Different set ups and cooking temps do  IMO have an affect.

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