- 300 Posts. Joined 9/2015
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Wood pellets vs chip
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Many makes of pellets are a blend of Alder (W coast) or Oak (E coast) and the labeled Flavor Wood like Hickory, Apple, Etc.One will be virtually indistinguishable from the next. I suspect that is the situation with Pucks. Quality 100% Smoke Wood Pellets, like those sold by Todd at A-MAZE-N are what the label says and there is a definite taste and smell difference from flavor to flavor...JJ
With the quality wood pellets you will be able to tell the difference between flavours. In the good quality pellets, depending on the type of wood in the pellets you buy, they will always be 100% hardwood but some will be a mixture. Hickory and mesquite for instance is very strong flavoured woods and so are often mixed with Oak (usually between 25%-60%) when turned into pellets. Without the Oak the flavour from the pellets would be overpowering - much stronger than burning wood chunks. The milder woods (manly the fruit woods) are usually used alone but can sometimes contain 25-50% Oak. If the ones you buy are the stronger woods and are 100% (say hickory or mesquite) then use them sparingly.
The important thing to look for is not just that they contain 100% hardwood but what hardwood it is. Any good quality supplier will tell you exactly what is in the pellet. Make sure that whichever ones you buy that there are food grade pellets.
I usually use Cookshack Hickory pellets, which are 60% oak and 40% hickory and there is no mistaking the hickory flavour on the food.
The pellets from Todd are a bit of a mix. Many of his smaller packs ("BBQr's Delight") are 100% of the wood itself, whereas his main range of pellets do not specify. He also stocks the Pitmasters Choice pellets which just say they contain "a unique blend of the featured wood and select hardwoods". I have not tried Todd's pellets as they would be too expensive to have shipped to the UK, but I would be confident that they are good pellets.
I don't think anything has changed with Todd's Pellets but one of his main selling points from the company inception was he uses 100% Smoke Wood unless labeled otherwise. His Mesquite should still be 100% Mesquite as far as know...JJ
I like the flavor of Mesquite. My Wife, can't even stand the smell! The second year of my marriage, as an Electronics Technician I spent the summer training in Texas and the Post Office would pay for me to fly home or fly my wife out every 3 weeks. I had to listen to, " If they use Mesquite, you can go by yourself..." every time I suggested a Q joint to hit for supper...JJ
I love the AMNPS. I do not like the apple pellets that came with the AMNPS. I don't smell or taste any apple like I did when I used chips. I am looking for other apple pellets to try, hopefully they exist. The pellets in the AMNPS work great for low temps in my electric smoker. Last weekend, I loaded up the tray with pellets and fired it up right before bedtime. When I woke up the smoker was smoking away!