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Aspiring Neophyte Pitmaster Seeker

post #1 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy ya'll from the Home of the Pony Express

Let's see here .... I am 53 getting on fast to 54, disabled Paper Work and lifetime Union Member of whatever the UPIU has transformed into ... anyway ..... I have been grilling and smoking most of my life and no matter where I have lived when I fired things up seemed the yard got full fast, specially on Saturdays when them Dawgs Dominated wherever they be that day with a gathering of the expatriated late Oct to include tents in the back yard and Oysters to roast .... Lawd I get homesick at times.

Well we have been out c'here in StJoe Mo fer 5 years or so and I need a life as I do nothing that can generate friends not working and all .... so I got to surfing the web and low and behold the area I now reside is a Nirvana for those seeking to leave Humbleness behind and compete in something I love to do ...... Cook over fire/charcoal/engulfed in smoke or buried in the ground... Love to camp and travel ..... so in a Zenful blinding of enlightenment I approached the Love of my life and Dept of War about competing in some of the contest in the area which I explained that from arround April to October we could attend contest every weekend if desired all within a 2 to 3 hour drive ........ Gulp

To my amazement she got excited about it as did my 10 year old daughter who wants to compete too ..... Thus did we decide to become:

Buddha Belly's Bar-B-Que
Zenfully Southern Que

There is but one little problem:

We have never attended a BBQ competition in our 20 odd years together nor the 30 or so before we Karma united us.

We have no Idea just what is really entailed as to equipment and expenses.

We would like to get our feet wet at something new or still small but have no clue as to which is which ... thought about breaking out at the Apple Blossom Festival here in StJoe .... plus it is just a few blocks down the road ... like 6 to 8 blocks.

We Home school and hope to get our act together this coming year so we can go on the road for a history and hands on geography lesson fer the Girlly Girl while competing all over the west then south or northeast then south but we going fer a Hogvalley retreat as soon as possible. I have dreamed of living in ther Marrion County area most of my life and my Dad has a lot I can stay on fer awhile.

That brings us to here .... where I hope to make a friend or two .... pester anyone who has competed for information and tips they are willing to share and in general talk about food as my 330 pound 5'6" person will attest is a serious vice/love of mine ... fact is I used to tell the Boy's at work that Eating and Cooking was better than sex ..... it is more sensuous, last longer and ya aint gotta beg fer it.

Hope to hear from Ya'll and one day share some Que as we admire my Trophies ..... as I wake from the dream.

ZenMasterSid Neophyte Pitmaster
post #2 of 35
Welcome to SMF! There are some folks here who compete, and some who judge. I'm sure someone will be along who can answer your question.

In the meantime, enjoy the forum!

Take care, have fun, and do good!


post #3 of 35
I love the name. A friend loves to call me her lil buddah belly. I wish I had information to share with you about competitions But alas I have not competed. I would say make sure you practice what you are going to cook as if you were in the tournament and do it a few times before you get to the tournament. That way when it comes to doing it for real in the tournament it won't be like doing it for the first time.
Set up a list of ingredients (you can adjust this list while practicing)
Set up a time table. Im guessing there is some kind of time limit. Start and finish times? If you make it 10 times before the competition you will know how you fit within that time schedule.

Good Luck! Please let us know how you do.
post #4 of 35
Welcome to the SMF, good luck in the future comps. What type smoker do you have
post #5 of 35
Heckuva story there! Welcome to the SMF's!

I have only entered one local comp. Did OK, but the judges appear only to be familiar with a BBQ sauce that would kill a diabetic...ah well, I'll teach 'em sooner or later!

Hang arond here and soon you'll amass enough info and tips that you'll be taking the local comps left an' right! <As long as you tailor your stuff to local tastes, I find...heh>
post #6 of 35
Welcome aboard the SMF ZenMasterSid, you have certainly come to the right place for all things smokin'! There are some folks here that compete and judge, I'm sure they'll be along shortly to answer your questions.

FWIW, I've seen folks competing with everything from Weber grills to big trailer rigs. You already know how to smoke, just use what you are comfortable with. Myself, I have my sights set on a Lang mobile 60... I am going to do comps and mobile catering... someday...

Good luck!
post #7 of 35
Greetings ZenMasterSid!...Welcome to the SMF!...PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif...Glad to have you aboard!...You're gonna like it here...

Until later...
post #8 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy and thanks for the welcome Meowey ... trust me I will be around lessen ya'll run me for talking too much.

post #9 of 35
Welcome aboard SMF,Budda belly ,and hello from Canada,see ya in the forums PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #10 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy VLAP ..... Buddha Belly was my nickname when I was in the Navy ... NAS Dallas Dallas Tx ... that is where I learned a love for Brisket and burnt my belly up with peppers which I cooled down with ice cold Coors.

I hear ya on the practice runs .... my first was a disaster .... tried to get a huge brisket <1.59 a Lb 30 bucks worth> done by turn in time as the rules out line .... cut into it and it was raw right on .... had to cook it several more hours which dried it out more than I desired but the flavor was great just not ready for turn in so ....... BUZZZZZZ ... no go for me.

This past weekend I experimented with some pulled pork cause folks out here like lots of sauce and such where I have Tar Heel bin my blood which means vinegar and peppers for a sauce that is sparingly used ... Mustard cole slaw is used to enhance the Porks Karma rather than sauce ... I rant ...
The Sauces out here are too sweet for me though the wife loves it ... anyway ... I thought it sucked ... I have not cooked anything that poorly since the first Brisket I sacrificed to the Gods in Dallas @77. But the wife , company and the fellers at the Cab company the wife works at all loved it .... way too salty and again late for turn in ..... Not looking good for the home team but I am like a Bull Dog ..... it'll take a breaker bar to get me off the idea.

Thanks again for the advice and hope to boar you again

post #11 of 35
heheheh.......buddah belly.......my kids (grown even) calles me that........

and any Van Zandt fan, is already a buddy to me............

miss. delta blues can't be beat...........

post #12 of 35
also........check out jeffs all nite brisket thread............

post #13 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy BlackHawk from the Heartlands

Dang .... I fergot to list my cooking gear .... so here goes:

1 Brinkman Smoke'n Pit got it this season after years of yearning

1 New Braunfel <older version of current Santa Fe>

3/4 Brinkman 30 dollar vertical smoker <grandsons destroyed the lid> thinking of converting to double rotisserie or Gyro meat grill

Several small portables for mudboggin and such

Thanks for the welcome

post #14 of 35
Hear hear on the sauce! Maybe I'm just bitter by nature, but GIMMIE THAT CAROLINA stuff!
post #15 of 35
i have a extra lid buddah.......if you would like it

post #16 of 35
Welcome to the SMF familyicon_exclaim.gif

I only judged one comp so I'm not much help there.
I do know that internal temp is the way to smoke. I have 2 (soon to be more) digital thermometers. Always keep track of the grate temp as most lid thermometers are off (not all) & each cut of meat is different & you can not go by time. Go by internal temp!

Ask around & look around you can & will get plenty of tips on the best way to prepare for a comp. almost all on the SMF will treat you as family & help as much as they canPDT_Armataz_01_40.gif
post #17 of 35
Welcome to SMF, you picked a mighty fine place to hang your hat !!!
post #18 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy Richtee from Jesse James's last home

Thanks for the welcome and I so agree with you assessment of Midwestern sauces aka Kansas City Style is like syrup.

post #19 of 35
would you like this lid Sid?

post #20 of 35
Thread Starter 
Howdy HawgHeaven .... love the handle

Thanks for the welcome and the information .... I was hoping I had enough grills and I know my smoke'n pit on its inaugural run 2 Hens 2 6lb Boston Butts a Brisket @10lbs one dozen Cheddar Brat soaked in St Louis's Best <Bud> and about two dozen Hot Dogs were smoked to perfection.

So I guess the question is just how much meat is required to meet the turn in requirements as well any promotions the festivals are backing ... like tokens for taste or samitch or whatever.

Figured I would have to get a little pull behind to load the grills on and tote wherever behind the van. Anyway this is for another thread, but thanks again for the moral boost

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