I called Masterbuilt and they said the controllers are in back order til July. Sounds like they had a huge demand - I don't know if that's a good thing. Anyway... they took care me. I'll just need to rely on the remote for readings until then.
Meanwhile... my break-in smoke was a success! It was absolutely the best chicken breast we've ever had at home or anywhere! And best yet, the family was absolutely impressed - so that felt great! Aside from the amazing flavor, it was so juicy, which was what I was really interested in experiencing and knowing first hand (after having read all about it).
I put aside the AMNS pellets just in case I screwed this one up, so I just used some store bought Hickory chips and I was pleasantly surprised on how well it smoked. Just like you guys said... just a slow steady smoke coming out of the vent. And it smelled heavenly - Wow! I didn't have any issues keeping the smoke going. The only mistake I made was leave it unattended (while I was on an errand) for about 1 hour... and when I returned, it was in need of more chips and it took another 15min or so to get it smoking again - but again, no issue getting smoke on just traditional chips. But I'm still eager to use the AMNS...
I brined in the chicken breast in water, kosher salt and brown sugar for about 2 hours. Then I let it air dry for about 2 hours before I applied a dry rub - I went with an "Applewood" rub I found at Walmart. Then I covered the meat with bacon. The recipe I followed called for 230 degrees until IT was 165. In about 1:45, I was already at 165 to my surprise (I was expecting to be more like 2:30 based on the recipe). I actually kept it longer as the sides weren't ready yet. Despite may be staying in about 30min longer in the smoker, it was still juicier than anything we experienced with chicken breast. The Applewood rub had a bit of a kick to it - spicier than I expected. But overall a great flavor. I may try something with it next time to make it a little milder.
On a side note. I used a $7 oven thermometer to check the temp reading on the display. With the display showing 230 degrees, the thermometer shows just above 200. After my smoke was done and over with, I put the thermometer in my range oven and set that to 230... and once the oven was preheated, the thermometer showed about 230 (needle between 200 and 250 marks). So it seems like my range oven and thermometer are in a agreement. No final verdict yet though. I'll be doing some tests still to check the different areas of the smoker to see if there's huge temp variants.
Anyway... without further a due.. my first Qviews!
Piggies in a Blanket??? How about some "Smoking Hot Quilted Chicks!"
Brined and Rubbed:
Ready to serve...
There she is... what a great addition to the deck!