Hi, I'm Laura from California. Brand new to smoking and VERY excited about it. I've been getting Jeff's Smoking Meat emails for a couple years now and dreaming about the day I get a smoker.
OK, I had a charcoal smoker that I used a couple times with good results but made a huge mess and I had trouble keeping the heat steady (never really used charcoal before...) When we moved my hubby begged me to leave it behind, so I did. Then we said we'd get an electric one but we plan on moving again in 1 to 3 years and he was hoping to hold me off until then.
However... we're both on an elimination diet for food allergies and one of the items on the diet is to have grass fed beef instead of corn fed (something about corn being the allergen) So off I went to the "grass fed beef" butcher shop to stock up and the very helpful man told me "cook grass fed steaks low and slow" -- all I heard was SMOKER time!
So I told hubby -- we need that smoker now! 3 days later a 40" masterbuilt electric smoker arrived with some apple wood chips. I put it together last night, seasoned it this morning, and cooked some beef and chicken in it tonight. Hubby is not as into smoke flavor as I am but he will come around, I am confident.
My steaks only came out so so in that the meat thermometer said they were done when they clearly were not. I should have just trusted myself with the finger press test, one of them was pretty raw inside (I like medium rare). The chicken is really good.
I want to smoke a turkey, salmon and trout, beef ribs and some bigger beef cuts, for example I've never made a brisket.
I want to smoke everything!
I am interested if anyone here has experience with smoking grass fed beef compared to corn fed. Do you guys smoke steaks successfully or is smoking mostly for bigger cuts?
I am also interested in which wood chips are good with which meats.
Also, if you smoke something big and have a lot of left overs any tips on reheating w/out drying stuff out?
Nice to meet all of you!