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Masterbuilt question - Page 2

post #21 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bauchjw View Post

I know you've gone way past the initial start of this thread, but I wanted to check if you've looked at a version of "mailbox mod" for your smokers? By the sound of this statement putting the wood in is a contributing factor. For cheap or nothing you can make a mailbox mod that keeps steady smoke without added oxygen. Good luck.

Yes I have. The other possible solution is we have a mini cast iron skillet that's used to bake a large cookie. If I can get it to fit, it will keep the chips from flaring up. It's about the circumference of a softball which would allow for a chunk of wood. Regardless of this, I'm not a fan of chips. I prefer chunks just due to the fact a single chunk lasts an entire jerky session and then some.
post #22 of 33
Thread Starter 
Here's how a brine it. As simple as possible when I have ample time to let it sit and brine. When I'm busy, I'll isually throw the meat in a ziploc, then put it inside of a vacuum seal bag and I get the equivalent of a 10 hour soak in 25 mins. I'm headed to a wedding at 3, and this will be smoked around 10-11 pm. [IMG]
post #23 of 33
Thread Starter 
Here's how I cut the beef up. It use nothing but eye of round. I start by using a filet knife to cut the fat cap off and remove as little meat as possible as I'm doing it. A lot of times there will be the thin film of intramuscular fat that is easier to remove after slicing, so I leave it for the time being. I fire up the slicer and go in the direction of the grain which comes out like the piece on the left. It is cut at 1/8" thick, and from there it's just a matter of slicing with the grain using a filet knife. Now, if there's any fat, or interior marbling, now is the time to slice it out. It doesn't need to be 100% fat free, you can leave tiny bits here and there, you just don't want masses of fat because it will turn the jerky rancid during the smoke or if it doesn't, it will reduce the shelf life of the beef. When I smoke, I keep it under 150 from anywhere to 3-6 hours depending on the weather. After I know the smoker is stabilized and won't spike over 150, I check it every 30 mins or so. I like my jerky to bend, not break but, see a little bit of white when you fold it over where the grain separates. There ya have it. I don't freeze my meat before slicing, to keep it cutting clean I pull the meat from behind the blade to keep it from being sloppy, then when the cut slabs of 1/8" are on the board, just slice it into strips. They don't need to be identical, but the closer they are to one another in shape and size will allow them to pretty much smoke all evenly . Anymore questions, feel free to give me a shout!
post #24 of 33

Not sure if your smoker is same model, but I can use chunks under the heating element. two will last about 20 hrs. I just use chips in initial hour.

Thank you for jerky info. I've been planning on trying this for years.
post #25 of 33
Thread Starter 
It's not identical, but there is a gap undeneath that I was actually curious about but wasn't sure if it would be hot enough to produce smoke. I'll give that a try tonight for sure. Do you just place it a top of some foil?
post #26 of 33
I did put on foil but only because that's what I line the bottom with for drips. It's produced smoke but I normally augment. However, with some adjusting I think it'll work.
post #27 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinebarrensBBQ View Post


I do a lot a lot of jerky and dry rub sales online which, I will post a Facebook and online store link in the end of the post. I've been selling to friends and family for about 6 months and when other veterans in various states started asking how to purchase, I decided to get serious, register an LLC, purchase 2 more smokers and start buckling down and getting serious. My online sales have been going for a week and so far so good. I've been having to smoke at least 9 lbs a day to keep up with orders. I started years ago at a friends BBQ restraint here on the NJ coast at a resort town and because I can't work due to my combat injury my only option is to be self employed. NJ before that I've worked in kitchens on and off my entire life and always enjoyed it for the most part, but BBQ is a whole other animal. People are amazed when they really see what goes into smoking jerky. I've found ways to cut down on my marinading time and the key to making any money at all is buying things wholesale as I stated before. A store may sell a 3 lb eye of round for 18 dollars, where I'm getting a 9 lb cut for 30. It's a fine balance between producing the best quality you can without going overboard and going in the hole. At the moment, I have two flavors of jerky out called Bee Sting which is a sweet taste of honey followed by a nice amount of heat using home made hot sauce that I call white lightning. The other is teriyaki. I will have 3 main flavors with some other batches thrown into the mix every month but I'm not going to overstretch myself by offering too many choices at once. The local sales which aren't too intensive, consist of small order for people are the dry rubs, pulled pork, brisket and my signature item, which is pig candy. My rub is a blend of salty, spicy sweet with brown sugar, coffee grounds and a few other items. It's rubbed onto thick cut bacon that I smoke then slice myself, baked at 325 while rotating the racks for about 20 mins. The end result is a caramelized, sticky sweet and salty piece of bacon that people go absolutely insane for. I have one person who wants to buy 5 lbs at a time. Shipping isn't an option with the pig candy, but everyone online is begging for some so I decided to jar and sell my rubs and give them instructions on how to do it at home. Here's a link to the online store. It's not much at the moment, but it's a safe and secure way to sell which is most important for the time being. I use Square for debit and credit orders and they recently came out with the online store version which is free to use.

https://squareup.com/store/pinebarrensbbq


Checked out your page. Do I wish you lived in my area so I could not only do a taste test before I buy but watch you at work! I don't see myself ever selling food professionally but so far the only time I got to see guys who knew what they were doing was at a BBQ competition I went to last year. Always looking to improve my own skills at BBQ, grilling, and in the kitchen.

post #28 of 33
Thread Starter 
I'm always learning new techniques from other pitmasters. The jerky I had to lean solo, while all my other BBQ came from my friend whom I worked for. I consider him a mentor as he would always take the time to answer questions and show me how to do stuff, and to this day I can call him and he'll always make time if I need advice. Even with getting the business rolling, he's been there to help. He doesn't see me as a competition or a threat, rather sees someone with a passion and is willing to go the mile to help.
post #29 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinebarrensBBQ View Post

I'm always learning new techniques from other pitmasters. The jerky I had to lean solo, while all my other BBQ came from my friend whom I worked for. I consider him a mentor as he would always take the time to answer questions and show me how to do stuff, and to this day I can call him and he'll always make time if I need advice. Even with getting the business rolling, he's been there to help. He doesn't see me as a competition or a threat, rather sees someone with a passion and is willing to go the mile to help.

When I first got on SMF there was a great guy/mentor nicknamed Scarbelly who gave me his home phone number to call. I feel uncomfortable calling people I don't really know personally so I never called him. Sadly, he died a few months or so later. For the past few years my primary mentor here has been Bearcarver. He's an amazing guy and the most knowledgeable person I know when it comes to smoking with a MES. He's got two MES 40's, I believe. So, I've picked up tricks and advice from him, from others here, and from the cookbooks I've collected. I'm always experimenting to find out what works consistently well. I've been using wood pellets and not chips for a few years because in an electric smoker I think pellets provide better smoke flavors than chips and with less hassle. A friend of mine gave me what I consider a gourmet smoking book for my birthday last month. I've posted about it here. The book's full of recipes that kick smoking food up several notches. Can't wait till the weather warms up so I can break out my MES 30 to start trying new recipes while working on perfecting the classics like pork ribs and beef brisket. At some point I'll try my hand at putting out jerky.

 

I think I told you my wife and I watch a lot of cooking competition shows. We enjoy the shows were established pro chefs are competing because they always help each other. Sounds like you have a great mentor. He understands that in your area the market can expand to handle his business and competitors'. I know that if I'm at a place where there are two vendors selling jerky and I like both I'll buy from both.

post #30 of 33
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by daRicksta View Post

When I first got on SMF there was a great guy/mentor nicknamed Scarbelly who gave that's me his home phone number to call. I feel uncomfortable calling people I don't really know personally so I never called him. Sadly, he died a few months or so later. For the past few years my primary mentor here has been Bearcarver. He's an amazing guy and the most knowledgeable person I know when it comes to smoking with a MES. He's got two MES 40's, I believe. So, I've picked up tricks and advice from him, from others here, and from the cookbooks I've collected. I'm always experimenting to find out what works consistently well. I've been using wood pellets and not chips for a few years because in an electric smoker I think pellets provide better smoke flavors than chips and with less hassle. A friend of mine gave me what I consider a gourmet smoking book for my birthday last month. I've posted about it here. The book's full of recipes that kick smoking food up several notches. Can't wait till the weather warms up so I can break out my MES 30 to start trying new recipes while working on perfecting the classics like pork ribs and beef brisket. At some point I'll try my hand at putting out jerky.

I think I told you my wife and I watch a lot of cooking competition shows. We enjoy the shows were established pro chefs are competing because they always help each other. Sounds like you have a great mentor. He understands that in your area the market can expand to handle his business and competitors'. I know that if I'm at a place where there are two vendors selling jerky and I like both I'll buy from both.
That's definately the case here in NJ. I have a bunch of hunters who will be dropping off game to be smoked because the closest place is in PA. They will have it processed and butchered, and I will smoke it the way they like. I've been getting requests for venison jerky. While it can't be sold, I will make money off smoking it for them. There's not much to do with BBQ in the area, and 2 places that are about 30-40 mins away don't smoke on site. They order it smoked and reheat it. My buddy's shop and myself are 2 of 3 who actually smoke everything ourselves.
post #31 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinebarrensBBQ View Post


That's definately the case here in NJ. I have a bunch of hunters who will be dropping off game to be smoked because the closest place is in PA. They will have it processed and butchered, and I will smoke it the way they like. I've been getting requests for venison jerky. While it can't be sold, I will make money off smoking it for them. There's not much to do with BBQ in the area, and 2 places that are about 30-40 mins away don't smoke on site. They order it smoked and reheat it. My buddy's shop and myself are 2 of 3 who actually smoke everything ourselves.


It sounds like you're growing this into a nice little business. If you get popular enough who knows much you could expand if that's your goal.

post #32 of 33
Thread Starter 
Well, I'd really like to expand down the road. I dunno if I'd want a full scale restaurant. But, where I live it's kinda hard to have anything but that once you reach a certain point.
post #33 of 33
Quote:
Originally Posted by PinebarrensBBQ View Post

Well, I'd really like to expand down the road. I dunno if I'd want a full scale restaurant. But, where I live it's kinda hard to have anything but that once you reach a certain point.

You really need to love the restaurant biz to open one up. There's a guy in our area who's been bringing his offset barrel smoker to various fairs and such for 15 years. He sets up in his own booth. In my opinion his Q isn't that good but that's beside the point. Seems like many BBQ people are mobile, traveling to various fairs in selected geographical areas, sometimes even entering competitions. You could rent a booth to just sell your jerky products, along with whatever dry rubs and sauces you might have developed. On the booth countertop you could have a clipboard or something where people could sign up for your mailing list. You could hand out business cards with your email and web site included so customers could order online. You could conceivably make more money this way than if you opened a brick-and-mortar restaurant.

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