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Breaking in the new smoker!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I started the day yesterday expecting my MES30 smoker (an early birthday gift from my wife) to be delivered on Monday, so imagine my delight when my step-son sent me a picture of my new delivery half way through Friday! :D  Since this nice surprise caught me off guard, I rushed to the store for a pork butt while asking Leslie to pick us up chicken thighs for that night, since I just could NOT wait!  I got home in time to season the smoker and get the thighs on with hickory.  I named the smoker Ralph Rauchhausen ( I know it's not proper German lol) and the chicken turned out delicious!

I was able to mix up a dry rub with brown sugar, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne, chili powder, cumin, salt and black pepper and rubbed the 9.5 pounder down last night and wrapped it up.  Seeing as I was up way too late last night, I only got the pork on at around 9am, using a mix of hickory and peach smoke.  Things are going really well so far.

Here's a picture of Ralphie with todays' quarry:

post #2 of 11

Congrats on the new smoker!

 

Be sure to take some photo's of that butt smoke!

 

Al

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 
This was about 4 hours in after a family member accidentally unplugged my smoker for almost an hour ... lol

Onwards to glory

post #4 of 11
Well, how'd it turn out?
post #5 of 11
Congrats on the smoker. I have a MES30 now for about 9 months. I am loving it. Hubs is planning to build me a little roof and 3 sides to protect it from unexpected showers in the middle of a smoke. Until then I have been doing short smokes. But dry season is almost here in SWFL and I hope to do some larger cuts soon.


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post #6 of 11
ps in your photo it looks like you are soaking your wood chips. I have not found that necessary. I use the chips dry.


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post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 

Actually, I found my butt a little too dry and I felt I used too much smoke, as the bark was a bit bitter.  I also feel Apple wood would be better. :D  With that said, I am always overly critical of my own cooking.  The neighbors and family absolutely LOVED it.  I told them the next will be even better because I learned a lot.

Hey MDGirl, I'll try dry wood next time, thanks!  I love shortcuts!  Why is it that so many folks suggest soaking?

post #8 of 11
I'm told Soaking is necessary when you put chips on coals or on a gasser. But not in the MES. I read somewhere here that wet chip can contribute to too much creosote? I'm sure there are a few folks here that can say if that is accurate. I have also read Thick grey smoke can make the meat bitter. Thin blue smoke is the goal. Smokin Al, JJ or Bear have posted a lot of helpful IMO. I'm sure they will be a better guide than my novice observations. Photos also help the pros troubleshoot. I've been regularly smoking skin on, bone on chix breasts and 1/4 birds at 250F for 3 hrs with apple/hickory on my MES30 with excellent results. No IT fussing or brining. Just a basic rub with light olive oil.
post #9 of 11
Also my first and only attempt at pork butt was 11 hours only to find the commercial rub way too salty we all have less than stellar results especially early on. I just used that pork in chili :-)
I had some serious texture issues getting my chix breasts right.
post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

I was able to smoke some spare ribs last weekend that I'd give a B- so pretty good by my standards, but my next mission is a whole chicken.  I will cut it spatchcock and use apple wood for that.  I've not read on chicken in-depth yet, but do recall it is preferred to smoke at a higher temperature than many other meats?  I intended on brining and probably still will, but I am interested in your method!  I feel chicken will be a great meat for learning different techniques with, as it is inexpensive :)

THANK you for your guidance; I appreciate the tips and learning from your experiences very much!

post #11 of 11
Im not a fan of skin so I cook quarters, breast/wing or just large split breasts with a simple rub of light olive oil and seasoning in the MES with apple/hickory blend at 250F for three hours. No brining. No fussing IT. Temp and time just the way lical jjoint does theirs. (No water in pan or brining either) they have been perfect for me each time.
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