Hi All! Last Thurs. I got my new rec tec home. I had it shipped to the warehouse at my work and used a work truck to bring it home. Started assembly as soon as I cleared some space in the garage. (Still a mess from winter.) I was impressed with the quality of the unit and it went together pretty easy. At this point it was around 10pm but I had a few beers in and decided to do the burn in anyway. I ran into a few temp issues, but have since figured them out. (Another thread, Thanks Lance!) I let it burn for about an hour.
The next morning, (Friday) I had some time to kill, and wanted to smoke something that night, so I seasoned it with 2lbs of quality thick cut bacon from our local meat locker. 350 for about 40min.
Friday night I did chicken thighs and legs. I rubbed them down with one of the rubs that came with the grill. I ran them at 225 for the first hour, then bumped it up to 250 until it hit 160. Roughly another hour?? I had some company and the beers were happening, so I'm not positive on the time. I only flipped these once, and everything came out even. Very juicy and flavorful. The only change I would make is to crank up the heat to crisp up the skin. Forgot this step.
Saturday night was steak night. We pulled out some T-bones and Ribeye Friday night to thaw. I seasoned these with SPG and went out to pre heat the grill to 450. (Should have done 500) Lots of learning to do with this new toy!! I put the steaks on the sear grates for bout 7 min per side. I usually do 4 min per side on my charcoal grill but figured the lower temp could stand more time for smoke. The steaks were slightly overdone , more of the med well version. Not too bad but we prefer med. Still they were juicy, tender , and had some mild smoke to them. Next time I will do the reverse sear method on steaks.
Not done yet, for Sunday, Mothers Day, I decided to try some beef short ribs we had in the freezer. (Butchered a steer last fall) I took these out Sat night to thaw.
This would also let me test the new smoker with a "set and forget" situation as we would be at my relatives for Moms day dinner. Only about 2 miles away. I rubbed the beef ribs down with another rub from rec tec. "Ben's Banging Brisket Rub." Went out and set the grill to 220 and let it pre heat. Plan was to 3-2-1 these. I put the ribs on at 12noon and we went to Moms day. I returned at 3pm to check things out and foil with beer, butter, and more rub. Found the temp holding right at 220. (According to the therm on the grill) I bumped the temp up to 225 and returned to the family. Came back home at 5:15 pm, unwrapped the ribs and applied a light mop of sauce. (Noticed there was not much pull away on the bone.) Let them go for the last hour, came out to check and they were not pulling away at all. Toothpicked a bit heavy, so I left them on. In the meantime....
Half a stick of butter per bowl and generous amount of salt. Yum!
Any how, I let the ribs go about another hour and a half. Still no pull, but toothpick seemed ok so I pulled them off. The kids had to get to bed for school and it was getting late. The flavor was fantastic where you could get meat, they were a little tough and chewy. I now know the problem was my temp was way lower then what I set the grill at. Probably 200 instead of 220-225. They would have benefitted from a couple more hours or longer wrap. On a good note, the smoke ring was great! Like I said, still a lot to learn on this new smoker.
What a great weekend of smokin! I had a great time playing with this new toy and I am very happy with its performance. On Sunday when I was doing the ribs, it was very windy, raining, and about 50 degrees. What ever temp I had the grill set at, it held it perfectly. I like the flavor of the smoke the "perfect mix" pellets give, and I would say I used about 15lbs of pellets total so far. Very pleased, and cant wait to smoke some more! Hope you enjoyed, Thanks!