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How do I handle temp drop when meat is added?


Scott F
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So I am 3 cooks into my KJBJ, cooked some ribs today at 250-275 dome temp using a 2.5/1.5/.5 process. My question for the group is what to do after the temp drop due to adding meat. It dropped from 270 to 230 and I ended up playing with the settings, after having it dialed in at 270. This caused a spike to 290, which I recovered from and returned to 260. Wondering what everyone does here?  Leave it and it returns to temp?  Fiddle with it and you learn over time?  Later in the cook it returned to temp no issues. 
 

Note: the ribs were exceptional!

 

Scott

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Leave it alone as it will recover. Time spent chasing your temp is better spent relaxing and enjoying

a cold one. An analogy would be presetting your oven temp to - say 350 per some recipe - then

adding what your cooking and then adjusting the oven temp. It's not normally done. The Kamado's are

basically extended range outdoor ovens. Also, the temp range for just about all BBQ cooks can cover

a fairly wide range and the 'Q will turn out great. Have fun  and glad your ribs turned out great.

Oh, Yeah - Welcome to the Forum. Glad to have you on board.

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5 hours ago, Scott F said:

... the ribs were exceptional!

This is the important lesson: it's hard to screw up the flavor. Keep trying things! There's very little downside. 

Frank, who pasteurized 2 slabs of bacon and cooked 2 racks of ribs this afternoon. Great tool, these.

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Thx for the advice all, after I messed with the temp I thought to myself ‘should have let it be’.  I will experiment with more salt, smoke and not wrapping them. Just wanted to do something I knew I could deliver without fail. I ended up adjusting to those timings because of where my ribs were at the time. The true test for ready is 3 parts for me: bark looks good, bend test and the way my instant read goes in the meat to read ~200. Breaking the cook up like that just let me pay closer attention to the ribs for my first time on a Kamado. 

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15 hours ago, CentralTexBBQ said:

+1 for everything said above.

 

Also, 290° was not a bad place to be either except for the fact that you were committed to one of those ungodly formulas. I hate those things... :-D:-D:-D

 

 


Any tips or recommendations to get me away from that formula?  Point me to some videos/discussions as I have lots of room to learn. I like the low and slow multi stage process because they are very tender. Just wondering how you keep them tender and moist. I know the Kamados retain more moisture so that alone might help. 

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36 minutes ago, Scott F said:


Any tips or recommendations to get me away from that formula?  Point me to some videos/discussions as I have lots of room to learn. I like the low and slow multi stage process because they are very tender. Just wondering how you keep them tender and moist. I know the Kamados retain more moisture so that alone might help. 

 

Yep. Just cook ‘em until they are done. No need for a temp probe or wrapping with ribs unless they are very lean.

 

I tend to just look at a raw rack and then just judge 3, 4 or 5 hours depending on the amount of meat and fat on them, then just shut the lid and walk away. I don’t do any wrapping, spritzing, basting or mopping. Just some rub before they go on, then make up a killer BBQ sauce to serve on the side.

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If the ribs were exceptional then you don't need help.. The temp drop is caused by a couple of things ! the cool mass of the meat (not really much mass in a single slab og ribs) 2 time you had dome open think of the blast of air when you open an oven door. This is a double edged sword on the one hand the hot air is out of the grill being replaced by the cooler outside air and dropping the dome temp down, on the other hand the longer the dome is open the larger the fire will grow this could lead to a temp spike and cause you to have to close the vents somewhat. I just pop the dome and quickly slap on the ribs and wait at least 30 to 45 min to see what the grill is doing..I don't usually foil, i go by a tooth pick to test if it feels like butter their done. Check out the rib recipes in John's video recipe collection.

 

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7 hours ago, Scott F said:


Any tips or recommendations to get me away from that formula?  Point me to some videos/discussions as I have lots of room to learn. I like the low and slow multi stage process because they are very tender. Just wondering how you keep them tender and moist. I know the Kamados retain more moisture so that alone might help. 

 

I probably need to remember that I have been cooking for years and some things come with experience but, you have to learn to cook to doneness, even when using a formula or for that matter, a meat therm. Start noticing the texture, color, flexibility, etc. of the meat when you pull it. Compare between cooks- ala, these felt stiffer than last cook but were not as tender, etc. Because, the problem comes with what to do when

 

  1. the formula fails or,
  2. the meat therm hits my target temp but the end product seems over or under cooked or,
  3. grill temps rising throw a wrench into the plans or,
  4. as in my case on Labor Day, the ribs have too inconsistent a thickness.

 

After buying 3 slabs of St. Louis style ribs from Costco, I noticed Slab 1 was very consistent in its thickness. Slab 2 had a much thinner section in the middle. Slab 3 was even thinner on one end. (I ascribe this to COVID related meat packing. Coming across chickens with more feathers, bone-in ribeyes with little, if any bone, etc.)

 

Anyway, cooking these three ribs to a formula would certainly have ruined the majority of two slabs. So, I cut off the end section of Slab 3 more than an hour before the thickest ribs were pulled and cut out the middle section of the Slab 2 about 45 minutes or so before Slab 1 was finished. End result- thinnest and thickest ribs perfectly done. But, it required my knowing not just when a slab might be done but, a portion of a slab. It's very easy to make jerky out of the thinnest sections trying to get the thicker sections done... Feel like I'm rambling now- hope this helps...

 

Edited by CentralTexBBQ
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Make sure you grill is heat soaked.  A Kamado takes a little time to heat the ceramics.  Once your grill is at your cooking temp leave it there for 30 minutes. Then when you the meat on you will still see a temp drop, but it will recover much quicker since your ceramics are providing heat as well as the fire.  This was a big learning point for me when I first got my KJ.  As a rule if I am doing a low and slow, I start my grill at least 60 minutes before I plan to put the meat on.

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Team pc has it correct on the Kamado prep. When it comes to bbq their is really no formula. More a general guide of Technics. Each piece of meat is in charge of the cook when it comes to doneness,or tenderness. Central is correct about the Covid meat processing, fewer slice and dicers and same amount of meat coming out of the plants means lack of quality butchery and strange looking cuts of meat. 

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