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Observations for the new folks - Page 3

post #41 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by PigBark View Post
 

Good post, I went to a cook off a couple years ago.. Have you guys had it before? its way over the top for me, way to sweet or way to spicey, or way to salty or way to much vinegar or way to much of this and that and this and that didn't go to good together lol... just give me some good home style Que and im good to go... any good coach will tell you, when your struggling, go back to the basics ... now we have them listed 1 through 10

 

I agree with your "way over the top" comment.  I don't like my BBQ too sweet or too salty and that seems to be the "norm" for some styles of que.  Personally I like to go "old school"....... bbq where you can actually taste the meat .  In watching some of these bbq shows it make the hair on the back of my neck stand up when I see just how much brown sugar is put on the meat YIKES!!! makes my teeth hurt lol...I am learning new stuff every time I smoke something - that's what I love about this smoking adventure we're all on :-)

We are going to a bbq competition this weekend - it's my first one.  Can't wait to see how the Pitmaster's do  their thing and sample some que.....

 

Josie

post #42 of 57
Quote:
  One other suggestion i would have for beginners is keep a smoking journal. Writing down recipes...temps...cook times and anything else 

I concur.  This has assisted me greatly.  Except when your excel spreadsheet gets corrupted and you have to start over.  Now I am back to the ol' pen n paper.

post #43 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hagisan View Post
 

I concur.  This has assisted me greatly.  Except when your excel spreadsheet gets corrupted and you have to start over.  Now I am back to the ol' pen n paper.

 

That's a great idea and also something to pass on to the kids if they wish to pursue the Q..

post #44 of 57

I am a newbie.  Thank you for the good advice.  It is supposed to be enjoyable after all!!  Smoke some meat watch some football and have an adult beverage!

post #45 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye smokerz View Post
 

I am a newbie.  Thank you for the good advice.  It is supposed to be enjoyable after all!!  Smoke some meat watch some football and have an adult beverage!

 

YUP watch some football - smoke some meat - and have SEVERAL adult beverages.....the only way to go!!!

 

Josie - SmokinVegasBaby!

post #46 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye smokerz View Post

I am a newbie.  Thank you for the good advice.  It is supposed to be enjoyable after all!!  Smoke some meat watch some football and have an adult beverage!


Hey, Buckeye, from a fellow Buckeye, welcome. Now, as to your smoked meat and adult beveraged football game, what time should I be there?
yahoo.gif
post #47 of 57

Smokeit,

 

Sorry for the delay.  Trying to get my new phone working properly.  Thanks for the welcome. Good week for a bye week for the Bucks since I am going to be smoking a bunch this weekend and won't be near a tv. 

post #48 of 57
Nicely said bama, I always enjoy reading your thoughts and opinions.
post #49 of 57

As a bbq noob, this is great and welcomed advice! TU

post #50 of 57
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by SmokeItIfUGotIt View Post


Hey, Buckeye, from a fellow Buckeye, welcome. Now, as to your smoked meat and adult beveraged football game, what time should I be there?
yahoo.gif

 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Buckeye smokerz View Post
 

Smokeit,

 

Sorry for the delay.  Trying to get my new phone working properly.  Thanks for the welcome. Good week for a bye week for the Bucks since I am going to be smoking a bunch this weekend and won't be near a tv.

 

 

:hijack:  LOL

post #51 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bama BBQ View Post
 

I see a lot of new folks around and would like to add a few simple observations in no particular order that may help our new friends.  This is not to sound preachy, just helpful observations.  Most of my posts have this theme in there somewhere.  Feel free to add others as you see fit.

 

1. You will get conflicting advice from people on TV, in cookbooks, on the internet, etc.  BBQing is a craft, and craftsmen often have differing opinions on the best way to do things.

 

2. Your own common sense is probably pretty good. Trust it. You'll find what works for you over a short time as you become a craftsman.

 

3. It's actually fairly difficult to ruin BBQ, so don't worry about it too much.  If craftsmen over hundreds of years have done it, you can, too.

 

4. BBQ cooking temp is a range.  Control your pit temp but really, anywhere plus or minus 25* is fine.  Don't chase temps.  Close enough is good enough.

 

5. Have patience. Give it the time it needs to cook without you watching, mopping, spritzing, etc every five minutes.

 

6. There are a bazillion gadgets and gizmos on the market.  Though they're fun to play with, very few are actually required to produce great BBQ.  A long lasting, clean burning fire and good technique is more important than expensive equipment.  Famous Dave started by cooking in a trash can.

 

7. Cook easy stuff first.  Try other's recipes before modifying them until you gain confidence.  Then feel free to experiment based on principles you've learned.

 

8. Backyard BBQ for your friends and family is not competition "one bite" BBQ.  You would not want a whole meal of competition BBQ.  Careful which recipe you use that you saw on Pitmasters.

 

9. Have fun.  Relax.  It's just cooking.  It's not suppose to be stressful.

 

10.  Cook to your family and friends preferences.  If they like fall off the bone ribs, cook them that way. If they like what you cook, you'll be asked to cook more.

Hate to resurrect an old thread but I ran across this link in another thread and read through what BamaBBQ had to say  and realized it was exactly what I needed to hear.  I've been doing my version of smoking on gas grills for a long time, got my first dedicated smoker in January, a gasser Smoke Vault 24.  Well, I started reading and trying stuff, bought a few gadgets and things and while my cooks were turning out good, they weren't as great as before on the gas grill.  I knew I had the smoker temp dialed in, no issue there and it does a great job of producing TBS.  My problem was I had given up my "gut" instincts on cooking that I had figured out over the years and was trying to mimic everything I was reading and learning from others.  So, I took a step back, got me a slab of ribs, just one, and set out to make some killer ribs in the smoker.  No special gadgets except the smoker, wood chunks, the Maverick, a simple rub and patience.  Then I applied a nice relaxing no-stress attitude and did what I already knew how to do, cook them ribs.  Well, they just came out great!  I was so happy and the lack of stress was amazing, the way it's supposed to be when you're doing something you love.  Since that step back I've been trying to keep it simple, low key, still trying things but also keeping in mind the things I know that work well already, at least for us in our house because all the advice from BamaBBQ in this post is great but the most important part is as long as the family and friends love it, it was a success.  Well, that's my ramble for today ........

post #52 of 57
Good list. I've always told folks it takes a lot of beer and patience.
post #53 of 57

7. Cook easy stuff first.  Try other's recipes before modifying them until you gain confidence.  Then feel free to experiment based on principles you've learned.

 

This has been my approach.  One of the things I really enjoy smoking is meatloaf!  Found a solid recipe that I have tweaked over time to my taste.  For example, the particular recipe I have calls for the addition of blue cheese.  I found that must of the cheese melted out of the meatloaf during the smoking process so I've substituted other cheeses that stand up to heat a bit better (love cheese in my meatloaf).

post #54 of 57
That sounds great! How long did you smoke your meatloaf? I just had an idea......
post #55 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bama BBQ View Post
 

9. Have fun.  Relax.  It's just cooking.  It's not suppose to be stressful.

In Homebrewing we have a saying "RDWHAHB" - Relax, Don't Worry, Have a Home Brew! This is true for newcomers as well as oldtimers preparing for competitions. For me, hobbies and activities are for me and mine to enjoy and are not the end all, be all of our lives. So definitely, Relax, Don't Worry, Have a BBQ!

post #56 of 57

I would add, if you're a complete newbie, try learning one thing at a time.

 

 

 

Never cooked a butt or a slab of ribs before? Consider getting to know those meats simply by roasting in an oven, to learn the best time/temp combinations for the results you prefer. You can also learn what rubs and sauces you like best.

 

Never smoked before, maybe got a brand-new smoker? Don't be afraid to cook a batch of nothing once or twice, just to learn the rig. If you know that you prefer ribs that have cooked at X temperature for X time, then learn how to get your rig to comply with that goal before you try smoking food in it.

post #57 of 57

Amen to keeping it simple. I started doing this to relax and have fun. To take my mind off all the BS that is thrown to me on a continual basis. To smell the sweet smoke of the Q. I like to experiment, but I have learned to start simple.

 

7. Cook easy stuff first.  Try other's recipes before modifying them until you gain confidence.  Then feel free to experiment based on principles you've learned.

 

I read quite a bit before I even started. I used a gas grill for years and decided to go back to charcoal that I learned a lot from by watching my old man when he used that Weber kettle grill. A lot of his stuff tasted good, but was usually dry. I'm trying to improve and have my stuff moist and juicy.

 

I have learned quite a bit in just the few months I've had my KJ. Looking forward to the July 4th weekend. A good weekend to do some smokin' in the Q. This weekend it's kabobs.

 

Keep the Q goin'

 

Gator Navy

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