Oh, shoot, guys! Last night, we were wanting to test the smoker out and cook for the upcoming week, but I didn't think to take pictures! I do have photos of the Thanksgiving birds.
Here are the results from last night.
1) First, we used a rubs recipe from online, and decided we don't like it; too much paprika and pepper, so we'll look for something else.
2) we dry brined the chicken but forgot to rinse it AND added the rub to it. Incredibly moist and tender, but a little too salty. And I wish I could crisp the skin, although I'm the only one here who eats skin.
3) the salmon came out awesome, although personally I'd like it a tad drier (my wife's the opposite).
4) I don't seem to have great luck with pork loin. It's tender and juicy, but I found the taste kind of bland.
This time, we smoked the salmon differently. My first time, I laid the salmon directly on the racks, and I thought it was perfect. This time, wife wanted me to follow this other recipe that has us brine it for 20 minutes in salty water, then let it dry for two hours, and then put it on aluminum foil with the edges folded up so we could put in some lemon juice (it said lime juice, but we had only lemons).
Taste was fantastic, but it was a little "wet" and less "crispy" (for lack of a better word) to me.
- smoked everything at 220 (smoked salmon separately just because we were letting it dry two hours)
- for chicken and pork, used mix of cherry and maple
- spatchcocked the chicken
- removed chicken when breast was at 150 and thigh was at 165, let it rest about 10 minutes
- removed pork loin when it hit 140, let it rest 25 minutes in foil
I think I should have added more smoke for at least the pork, I think that would have helped. I didn't add smoke very long at all, probably 90 minutes total? Then I was just slow-cooking.
When I cooked the salmon, I added cherry smoke for about 45 minutes, because the salmon cooked pretty quickly. Removed it at 140, too.
**** I would love any suggestions on how to improve, including choices of wood! ***