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Rookie Smoker from CT

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Hi everyone,


I may be new to owning a smoker, but I am far from a rookie at cooking.  I am 30 years old and I live in Southeastern Connecticut.  I worked in my fathers restaurant between the ages of 14 and 20.  Joined the Navy as a submarine cook and served for 8 years.  Afterwards, I spent two years in Culinary School learning classic French cooking.  Currently, I am using my military benefits and going to school full time at the University of Connecticut, working towards a BA in Economics.  I am not cooking professionally at this time, but I do ALL of the cooking at home for my wife and friends.  I have standards that my wife just doesn't understand (but she is not complaining either).  I make everything from scratch.  On Mondays, I'm breaking down chickens, Tuesdays there is always a huge stock pot simmering, I bake bread over the weekend and I'm churning ice cream whenever I get that sudden paranoia that I might run out.  My kitchen aid helps me pump out sausages, and a million other things too.  Lets just say that I spend at least as much time cooking as I do working and studying combined :)  Its a good thing I learned the art of kitchen multi tasking at an early age.


I finally broke down and purchased my first smoker about a month ago.  I own the Napoleon brand Apollo AS300K.  It took me a long time to decide to purchase this over the Weber Smokey Mountain cooker.  It was the tiny additional features that pushed me to the Canadian side of the fence.  As of now, I've only managed to smoke a couple pork shoulders.  Low and slow for 13 hours and they came out great.  I'm looking forward to learning a lot about smoking from you folks here.  I can tell that this is a great community and I really can't wait to dig in and get to know everyone.  I have a loooooong list of "to-dos" with my smoker.  Here are my short term goals:


1) More Pork shoulder

2) brined and smoked pork loin (going on today after brining for a couple days in the fridge)

3) Keilbasa

4) Pastrami

5) Bacon (waiting for the colder months so I can cold smoke)

6) Smoked Cheeses (ditto)


That's about it.  thanks for reading!



post #2 of 5

welcome1.gifto SMF!  We are so glad you joined us! Would you mind updating your profile to show the other SMF members where you are located?  Might meet a few neighbors!  Thank you very much for your Service! :usa:


We love to see pictures of what you are cooking (or what we call q-views here at SMF).  To "upload the q-views" just follow the directions here and it will be easier. If you are using a cell phone, an IPad or a kindle, go to the main SMF page and click the Mobile button. Will make the uploads a bit faster too.


If you didn't read the "Terms of Service" notes.....please do.  There are a few things that everyone should know about those pesky little rules before plunging into the forums and some guidelines of how to interact within the forums. Off site links are not allowed here at SMF per Jeff. Not that you have done anything wrong....just a little bit of FYI for new members!


If you need any help roaming around the forums....just holler!  Happy to help out!



post #3 of 5
Hi Ben! welcome1.gif to SMF!!! We're happy you found us! You've come to the right place, we have over 50,000 members who just love to share their experience and over 1,000,000 posts describing it! Yea that’s right over 1,000,000!

The search bar at the top can be your best friend when you are trying to find answers to your questions but you can still ask too if you want!

We have an ”Articles” section that is full of great information about smoking to include a lot of recipes and instructionals. Check it out there is a lot to learn in there!

You might want to check out ”Jeff's Free 5 day E-Course”, it will teach you all the basics plus a whole lot more!
post #4 of 5

Welcome to the forums, Ben!  This is the best place I know for sharing ideas on smoking, grilling, curing, etc.  There are plenty of friendly, knowledgeable folks who really enjoy helping one another.  Looking forward to your input here, and just ask when you need anything...someone here will surely have the answer.



post #5 of 5

Ben :welcome1: and thank you for your service!

Glad you joined the group. The search bar at the top of any page is your best friend.
About anything you wanna know about smoking/grilling/curing/brining/cutting or slicing
and the list goes on has probably been posted. Remember to post a QVIEW of your smokes.
We are all smoke junkies here and we have to get our fix. If you have questions Post it
and you will probably get 10 replies with 11 different answers. That is because their
are so many different ways to make great Q We all have our own taste.

Happy smoken.


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