La Caja China

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by cheech, Aug 30, 2007.

  1. cheech

    cheech Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Has anyone ever used a La Caja China before?

    http://www.lacajachina.com/

    My friend mentioned that he could get his hands on one for me fairly cheap.

    I know it is not a smoker but what are your thoughts.
     
  2. flagriller

    flagriller Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Never hear of them. How well built are they? How heavy? Cheap, how cheap?
     
  3. bilvo47

    bilvo47 Fire Starter

    I've heard of them - it's a traditional pig roasting box right?
     
  4. cheech

    cheech Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Yes they are a traditional box
     
  5. bbq bubba

    bbq bubba Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Pretty cool Cheech, you can do more than pig's in them. If the price is right it would be neat to have one, conversation piece at the least!!
     
  6. hawgheaven

    hawgheaven Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I know someone who knows someone that swears by them for roasting piggies... other than that, I know nothing. About a year ago, I looked at them on their website and thought it would be a neat addition to the arsenal...
     
  7. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Roberto Guerra is the creator of La Caja China, and he also happens to be the top chef of Cuban pork in Miami. I don't have any experience with it, but I do remember watching them stuff and insert a whole pig into it. After awhile, they used the special grate to flip it over. At no time did they add any additional fuel, at first they loaded it with a lot of charcoal. Roberto Guerra also manufactures La Caja China, and he sells them by special order. He makes about 650-750 of them a year. It is usually carried around by 2-4 persons.
     
  8. meowey

    meowey Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Watched Roberto Guerra and Bobby Flay use them on a TV Throwdown on FoodTV. Looked like a cool unit. It would be an acquisition of mine if I thought I could get away with it. Go for it if it's a good price!

    Take care, have fun, and do good!

    Regards,

    Meowey
     
  9. squeezy

    squeezy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Sounds like something to add to your stable ... [​IMG]
     
  10. deejaydebi

    deejaydebi Smoking Guru

    Sound interesting Cheech. Theres a few of those smoke bomb things around lately. Let us know how well it works.

    I hate to eat things while their watching me.
     
  11. cheech

    cheech Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I will take a look at the unit when I got to visit my friend down in Florida. This will have to be next summer.

    I may have to make an emergency trip down there earlier.
     
  12. I've got the smaller version. Cooks 8 chickens in under 45 minutes and ribs in about 2 hours. It's amazing really. The trick is the charcoal sits on top of the stainless steal box to which your meat goes in to. So with the heat on top and the box, the inside turns into to a scorching oven. Unfortunately, what happens is that no real charcoal flavor is imparted on the meat as coals are outside the box. I saw the Bobby Flay Throw Down and the inventor looks to have corrected that and has created a piece that does push smoke into the box. He also created a rotisserie for it so you can cook even more meat.

    I can tell you that I've only used it a couple of times because of the lack of flavor. If you're in a rush, it cooks faster than gas. So it's a good option in a pinch. Oh, and everything you need comes with it to include a stainless roasting pan, a grate that fits inside the pan, tongs, etc.

    Good luck.
     
  13. cheech

    cheech Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    That was my concern. I figured that with out the smoke that you really are not smoking it and that means really no flavor.

    Basicaly this unit is a pressure cooker
     
  14. coleysmokinbbq

    coleysmokinbbq Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    But!...You CAN have smoke while cooking with the 'La Caja China'!!...

    Check out the 'Smoke Pistol' !...[​IMG]

    Granted...it's not the traditional way to smoke...but it works!...

    Has possibilities for cold smoking too...


    Until later...
     
  15. deejaydebi

    deejaydebi Smoking Guru

    Maybe you could just pipe it in from top to bottom?
     
  16. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Coley, I've been using a SmokePistol for a little over 2 yrs. now. I have a bullet type Brinkmann and because I'm handicapped, cannot be taking the unit apart to add/change wood chips/packets, it's too dangeress with hot food and hot water pan. The SmokePistol works ok most of the time, one problem is that you have to have ac power to the unit, La Caja China doesn't. You'll get enough smoke from a bullet/cartidge for 3 hrs. plus based on how much smoke you control. Sometimes you'll have to tap on the cartridge to get the pellets to drop down, this happens if they are packed too tight. My concern with La Caja China is the thckness of the outside wall, the pipe where the SmokePistol emmits the smoke is not very long, intended for thinner walls like a Brinkmann. They don't offer a wood mix, but you can carefully remove the metal bottom of the cartridge and empty the pellets into a pile of different pellets, mix them up and carefully refill the cartidge, finally replacing the metal botttom. I hope this is of some help.
     
  17. blackhawk19

    blackhawk19 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Why are you asking the price, just send your car [​IMG]
     
  18. coleysmokinbbq

    coleysmokinbbq Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Hi Richoso!...

    For the thicker wall of the 'La Caja China' cookers the threaded fitting
    which attaches the unit to the Brinkmann, or other thin-walled units,
    must be replaced with a longer threaded fitting.

    While I'm not certain about this, I believe that the electrical pipe nipples
    used in lamp repair/lighting fixture repair, etc. is of the same thread
    diameter and pitch.

    These fittings are sold at hardware stores, home improvement outlets,
    electrical supply houses, and even at Wally-World.

    At the time I posted about the 'Smoke Pistol', I hadn't noticed the short
    fitting on the original unit.

    However...The unit on This Page of the 'La Caja China' website has the
    longer fitting installed already, and is ready to be mounted on the cooker.

    Here is a photo of the unit:

    [​IMG]


    Sorry for the confusion everyone!...Hope this will clear it all up!!...[​IMG]...

    Incidentally...There's a recipe for their 'Mojo Criollo Marinating Sauce'
    on the website, if anyone's interested...



    Until later...
     
  19. pperkins

    pperkins Fire Starter

  20. shooter1

    shooter1 Smoking Fanatic

    I have had a Caja China #2 for many years as we do a pig roast every year on Christmas Eve. It does basically work like an outdoor oven and you will not get any flavor from the fire. The flavor comes from the marinade and the slow roasting process. The traditional cuban style roasted pork marinade is called Mojo. Mojo is a combination of sour orange juice, garlic, onion, oregano, seaor kosher salt, pepper and other spices depending on how you were taught to make it. There is a commercial product sold called Mojo Criollo that can be used in a pinch but is no where near the same flavor. The Caja China website has a smoke generator that can be installed on the Caja China that I may try some day. Hopefully I have attached a few picture of the pig roast I did this past Christmas Eve.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
     

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