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First batch in the big chief

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
bottom round sliced thick
home brewed brine
lightly peppered the brined meat
started the smoke this eve with cherry-alder mix
only thing I didn't use this time (my first with the big chief) was some brown sugar.

I'll let you know
post #2 of 11

Re: First batch in the big chief

whats a big chief??
post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: First batch in the big chief

I got one from a garage sale the other day for $35 it was almost new. Very much a "dumb electric box" but I've had good results with its little brother, now I can quit borrowing the little chief from my dad.

post #4 of 11
Nice score Longshot. What was your recipe for your brine? I'm looking for something that has a 'no' or 'low' sugar content.
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: First batch in the big chief

Hey Dutch,
My first batch cooked a little too long I need to cut the time a little but the flaavor was fantastic.

My brine is very much “to taste†so take these measurements as guidelines.

For the one 4 lb roast:
6-8 cups water
½ cup pickling salt (I actually use slightly less)
¼ cup either white or white wine vinegar
4 TBSP Worcestershire sauce
2-3 TBSP Soy Sauce (my reason to cut some salt)
¼ cup lemon juice (I would say I use a bit less than that as well)
I get a little crazy with the Louisiana hot sauce (I would put it somewhere in the ¼ cup area but go to taste)
¼ cup minced garlic
I usually stop here and smoke with mesquite/alder

My family likes a little more “jerky taste†so sometimes I add 1 TBSP liquid hickory smoke. Then smoke with the cherry/alder.

You can also add ½ cup of brown sugar to sweeten it a bit. (I usually don’t like the sweeter jerky but sometimes the kids prevail)

No matter how the brine goes, I lightly pepper the strips after brining with course ground black sometimes mixed with a little cayenne.

You can see I like spicy which can help eliminate sugar.

Happy smoking……..
post #6 of 11
Hey you're doing quite well. When I got started I moved up to the Little Chief and paid more for that than what you did for the Big Chief
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 

Re: First batch in the big chief

Well the hunt didn't go as well as hoped, counted does for two days. There's always next week. I am going to do another batch of beef jerky so's I get the hang of my smoker. Here are the initial mods I made. I cut and taped a cardboard box insulator for it to hold more heat. Then I punched a hole in the box and lid of the smoker to place a thermometer into it. Looks like I can maintain 150 -170 degrees pretty easily so cooking in it is a no go. With the aluminum box it'll be easily adapted to cold smoke and I'll have to get another for doing poultry and ham and the like.
post #8 of 11
Thanks for sharing the recipe, Longshot. When I use soy sauce, I stick with the low sodium stuff to keep the salt intake down.

I'll sprinkle pepper on the jerky before putting it in the smoker too. Sometimes, I'll sprinkle some red pepper flakes on it (my wife says I do it to be mean to the kids :twisted:)-I tell her I do just so I can have some! :P Maybe I can fake 'em out and just sprinkle some red pepper flakes in the bottom of the zip top bags! 8)
post #9 of 11
Thanks for posting your recipe, much appreciated.
Those Little Chiefs and the Big Chiefs are not a joke smoker. As far as I am concerned they very well cover Gypsy's saying of "It is a box, I smoke in it". That is exactly what everyone of our smokers are; no matter if they look fancy, are insulated, are mounted on a trailer or have 6 foot chimneys poking out the top !!!
post #10 of 11
I have to little chiefs and they work great. Mine are modded, but thats half the fun. What can I say I like to tinker. I paid almost as much as longshot did for my first little chief. So yeah he got a good deal.
post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 
Didn't mean to imply that the Luhr Jensen smokers were a joke. That is all I used for years and with great results. The fact remains as shipped they are a "Dumb" as in not "smart" they have no temp controls or controls of any kind and you have to learn how each one acts. They are more of a smoker/dehydrator than a smoker/cooker. I never intend to be without one as they do jerky and fish just how I want them, but I can't finish a brisket in one. Not putting them down at all, just commenting on their purpose.

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