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Scared of oversmoking with Weber Kettle Smokenator (Complete Newb)

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hello all,

 

Recently I purchased a smokenator for my weber kettle charcoal grill. I'm very anxious to use it. I'm planning on smoking an 8 pound pork butt tomorrow using the smokenator with a mix of hickory and apple wood chunks. I'm a complete newb, and this will be my first time ever smoking any type of meat. I'm pretty confident that I can maintain temp control, but I'm really worried about oversmoking the meat. My plan is to add 1 chunk of hickory and 2 chunks of apple on top of the lit coals in the smokenator. Will this be too much wood starting out? Also, at what point if any do I add more wood? From what I have read, when the butt reaches 160 degrees, don't bother adding any more wood. Instead, continue to cook until you reach a temperature of 200 degrees. Is that correct?

 

Here is my complete plan for smoking my first pork butt:

 

Tonight - apply rub (http://bbqpitboys.com/recipes/dry-rub-for-pork#.VY690vlVhBc). Is this rub okay? Should I coat it with mustard first, or not? Wrap and store in fridge. Or should I wait until tomorrow morning to apply the rub? 

 

5:00 am - start the grill, add the wood, water pan (using bread loaf pan instead of the small pan that came with the smokenator), and work up to a grate temp of 225

 

6:00 am - put pork butt on the grill. Do I then stick and leave one of the probes inside the butt or should I just stick it every hour to check meat temp?

 

8:00 am - possibly add more wood? Again, I'm unsure how much to use. Make sure water pan still has water in it.

 

10:00 am - should be about 1/3 of the way done. Don't add any more wood correct?

 

Continue to cook. I don't think I'm going to wrap at 165. I want the nice bark. It's okay not to wrap correct?

 

6:00 pm - hopefully the meat has reached a temp of 200 degrees. Pull the meat of, wrap in foil, and wait for 30 minutes.

 

6:30 pm - prove I knew what I was doing by enjoying some of the best pork ever.

 

Like I said before, my main concern is oversmoking the meat. I don't want to ruin the first meal on my new smokenator. Any help on wood amount and any other advice would be greatly appreciated. Thank you for your help. 

post #2 of 3

Welcome to the board! If you're not sure, then go light on the smoke by using less wood for your first time. Use the Search here to see the methods other people use with that smoker.

post #3 of 3
Kind of a hard question to answer, as everyone does things differently. Pork butt has a very low surface to mass ratio, so it'll take a good bit more smoke than say, ribs or chicken thighs. I'd start off with the amount of wood you're planning and maybe add more at the 4 hour mark if there is no smoke and no smell of wood smoke. I'd also wait until the 4
hour mark to insert the probe just to be on the safe side. No need to insert it sooner, or to even open the cooker.
For what it's worth, I add 4 or 5 chunks to my coal pile at the beginning and don't add any more. I've found that with the Minion method, as long as I've placed the chunks correctly, I'll still be producing thin smoke even after 8 hours, which is about as long as I'll ever run the smoker.
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