Hi folks, I just posted the below thread in the New England group and then I saw the private message encouraging me to post in the Roll Call forum. Here's a copy of what I wrote below:
Hello all, this is my first post and I am quite excited to be here. I recently received a very generous Christmas gift from my parents of a Weber Smoky Mountain Cooker (18.5" with the water pan, like this http://www.amazon.com/Weber-721001-Smokey-Mountain-Charcoal/dp/B001I8ZTJ0). I am a lover of all things food and am especially a lover of creating things on my own. I fell in love with charcuterie a couple of years ago and have been curing all sorts of meats with nothing but success (even with the more complicated stuff like salami and coppa). I am also a homebrewer and have 20+ batches of ale under my belt (some strike outs in those 20 though). I also make my mozzarella, pasta, breads, lquers, etc., etc. So, like most of you folks, I am passionate about the food and drink that I consume and that I make. Smoking was the next logical step.
Enough with the biography, I have some questions for you all and would very much appreciate your guidance.
1.) What do you recommend as a quality cook book for a veteran of home cooking, but new to smoking?
I bought Weber's Smoke (http://www.amazon.com/Webers-Smoke-Guide-Cooking-Everyone/dp/0376020679/ref=pd_sim_lg_3) and like very much what I see, however, many of the recipes are not for the type of smoker I have. I'd like one that focuses more on foods that are best prepared in my aforementioned contraption. Any suggestions?
2.) Any recipes for pulled pork where the pork butt isn't so large?
First of all, full disclosure, I am not going to start by smoking a pork butt. I want to get a feel fro this thing and am going to start with something else (like a bone-in pork chop, so if you've got any quality recipes there, I'd love to see them). Second, I know, I know, if you're going to do pork butt you may as well do a lot of it, right? However, it's just my wife and I who will be eating this and having a 7-8 lbs. pork butt that many of the recipes I have looked at call for, is quite excessive. Are there any recipes for smaller pork butts? The Whole Foods on North Main St. in Providence often has smaller pork butts that run between 3.5 and 4 lbs. I'd like to smoke one of those but am not sure how it will change the cook time (which is something that surely is impacted by a variety of things like weather, but I am trying to get an idea so I can plan accordingly). Any recipes or guidance for cooking a smaller butt (insert Sir Mix-a-lot joke here)?
3.) Anyone ever smoke mozzarella?
I am sure you have. As mentioned previously, I make home made mozzarella. Nothing would make me happier than to smoke some of that mozzarella. However, I am a bit concerned as fresh mozzarella has much more water content than store bought stuff and I'm not sure if the recipes I have looked at for smoked mozzarella account for such. Any advice is appreciated.
Anyways, thanks for reading all of that and thanks in advance for your feedback. Like I said, I am stoked to be here and am excited to take this next step towards high cholesterol and gout.