Given my BBQ consumption, love of my Weber kettle grill and general lack of assistance in the kitchen, my wife thought a 22" WSM would be the perfect birthday gift. I couldn't agree more! It's now assembled. Picked up a 40# bag of Nature-Glo this morning.
Talked to my local butcher and he set aside a 10# brisket (that would be "great for smoking") that I'll pick up after work today. Contemplating also getting a boston butt / pork shoulder to throw on at the same time. Given the fuel and considerable time for a low and slow smoke, figure why not smoke 2 meats instead of one. Planning to attempt the Minion method. But I'm brand new to smoking, so if you think I'm stupid for going "all in" on my first smoke, tell me. If you think it's reasonably achievable, I'm game. Also, if I go with a pork shoulder, any recommended size?
One thing I've determined I don't want to fool around with is the kitchen (in particular, the oven). Since I've proven to be generally unhelpful in the kitchen, I don't want to make it look like I have any idea what's going on in there. Obviously some prep and finishing will require my kitchen counter, but want 100% of the cook to be on the WSM.
Was going to do a commercial / pre-made rub for both (Chicago Spice House, here I come!). Also some mustard slathered on the pork shoulder.
What do you think on start time -- fire things up tonight with meat? The Buccos are playing on the west coast, so I'm planning to stay up later anyway! Or is there value in doing a "prep smoke" tonight with no meat tonight to start to get familiar with the WSM, see how well it retains temp, etc. I have some cheap charcoal that I'm fine burning for the sense of burning just to break things in a bit -- then do the actual meat smoke on Saturday into Sunday. Seems like I should budget at least 15 hrs of smoking (10# x 1.5 hrs per #). And then a few hours of wrapped "cool down" in a cooler? Boy, my OCD & ADHD may be problematic!
On the smoking meat part, I picked up a 4 pack of metal thermometers. I've read and heard loud and clear -- DON'T BE TEMPTED OPEN THE SMOKER IF YOU DON'T HAVE TO. Can I just leave the metal thermometers in the meat while it's smoking? Also, I hold off on putting the meat on once I reach 225 deg, right?
I'm sure a bunch of these topics have been discussed before, but if someone thinks there's a particularly good thread, let me know.