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Couldn't help it! Full Packer for Saturday's Dinner- Qview - Page 2

post #21 of 73
Seems like it looks real good, beef seems to a bit more tempermental than pork. Nice qview and documentation.

post #22 of 73
Thread Starter 
Don't know how I missed your reply...just a bit tired/rummy I guess!

Yeah, at least the weather can allow somebody to post some grub for your viewing pleasure.

Temps did come on pretty hard at first, then, BANG!!!!!!!

And yes, that was a stall to kill for! Still in it right now...I'd have to look back on my posts to even figure out when it started...all I know is, it's a wicked one! LOL!!!!! I was just thinking about going back out to peek, as I don't have a wireless probe with remote display. My last check show a rise from 143* to 144* in 50 minutes...insanely slow climb after taking a 16* plunge from 157* to 141*, right into the firey depths of smoker hell...heh-heh!

If I get ambitious someday, I have a great solution to the stepping in and out periodically with equipment I already have: 2 wireless security cameras w/night vision, reciever, security DVR and 32" Curtis Mathis color TV for a monitor. I thought about it a few months ago, that it would be a cool way to monitor my smokers from indoors. I can run 1 camera, or the other, or scan between the 2 of them...and each camera has audio as well to listen for temp probe alarms...man I really should get this set-up and running soon.

It would be a great addition to my kitchen set-up! Monitor probe temps and/or chamber temps and watch the thin blue from the vents at the same time...probe goes into alarm and wakes me up from a nap (just kidding).....man, just think of the possibilities! I could be chasing mama around the house and...nevermind......LOL!!!!!

Woah, I must be getting tired now...3:33 AM here. Gotta go peek at things.

post #23 of 73
Waiting for the next installment. Great story and pics.
post #24 of 73
Thread Starter 

11 hour update...what plateau...this things dead! LOL!!!

Thanks, it's been way too long since my last full packer...come to think of it, this only my second one ever that I've smoked intact (without trimming/separating first). This one is proving to be one to remember though!

Thanks, more coming right now.

I guess I truely can say now that I have gone through a plateau from hell, and it's still running after more than 5 hours. Took the plunge, and has only recovered 5*F IT thus far. Chamber temps are chugging along @ 225-230*.

I wouldn't even believe this myself if I didn't see it first hand, so here it is...note the timer (bottom) with each temp reading...crazy-slow recovery:

And, another peek while I topped-off the main water pan for the long haul...still not much more shrinkage to be had, so she's a dead cow for the moment...you'd think I shot it with a big enough tranquilizer to knock down an elephant:

What a guy won't do for a good smoke, eh? LOL!!!

post #25 of 73
What a great thread Eric. I'm such a newbie that last week I didn't know how to describe that thingy (sfb) attached to the side of the big grill (CG). I've been Dutch Oven cookin' for yrs and just this last summer bought a used smoker at a garage sale 'cuz the price was so cheap ($25). Been studying this board, and some others, for a week now and my juices are really flowing about using that smoker come springtime. This is a great website and living up to it's reputation. Thanks for sharing...
post #26 of 73
You didn't fall asleep did you!?? biggrin.gif
post #27 of 73
Thread Starter 
Thanks, hey when you get ready to start out, drop by roll call and lets know about your general llocation (for climate/weather issues), and a few details about your cooking experience. This will better help others to give you good tips/advice in the future. Also, the 5-day free ecourse is a good source of starter info.

But hey, why wait? Heh-heh-heh!!!!!! Teen's (temp) here and I'm a happy smoker......

Welcome to the addiction! Errrrrr, hobby...you know what I mean! LOL!!!!

No sir! Just mixed up my...oh I don't know...20th mug of cappuccino..weeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!! HA-HAH!!!!!!!!!

post #28 of 73
Thread Starter 

Micro stall, or spice/steam pan problem?

Now, I have nearly perfect vision, but, this about had me seeing triple...I had no idea what the numbers were reading when I took these, as I was just trying to get a few sets of relatively clear shots under a 500 watt halogen lamp without a flash...cell-cam...can be a pain when you least want it to be...

Note the timer and temps here...these are posted in the same order as taken:

These next 3 were taken in the same minute of timing:

It's going nowhere, and is in no hurry to get there, either.

I think my spice/steam pan has created too much baffling of the heat, and is not allowing enough to pass underneath the brisket...I'm shooting for 250* again, as this is getting out of hand a bit here...I think 8 hrs since it crashed and recovery time plus hitting 180* IT could be around 6:00 PM tonight...makes for about 25.5 hours total smoke time...this is just not right.

Gonna check my burner setting and chamber temp a couple more times to be sure I'm up to a strong 250*.

I can't even imagine what seems like an 11-12 hour stall at this rate.

I did wonder about a nearly full sized pan, being a 12" x 18" placed under the brisket (even though it's a couple rack-spaces below) in a chamber size of 15" x 24". Hmmm, then again, I did have a pretty good temp rise to start out, getting over 140* in a nearly perfect time-frame. Maybe I'm second-guessing this bad boy, and it truely is a plateau from hell in monumental proportions! LOL!!!!!!

I think I'm just very tired and don't know what I know anymore.........last time I checked my sense of direction, up was ^^^...OK...yep..so, I'm still here, in own mind at least! HEH-HEH-HEH!!!!!!!!!

OK, back to the smoker for a few minutes.....man I'm getting as silly as the night is long...now if the night was long when I'm sleeping...that would be a sweet deal!

post #29 of 73
Thread Starter 

Lesson #1 from this smoke.....

Time for easier breathing again...

This is more like what I wanted to see...IT is on the rise again:

After approx. 1 hour of 250*:

And a quick peek with a few shots of water added to the pans:

Extend the plateau by turning down the chamber temp when it starts...you idiot!!!!!!!!! LOLOLOL!!!!!!

8+ hour plateaus are not for the beginner, nor someone like me with some experience with it. DO NOT ATTEMPT TO TRY THIS AT HOME!!!!!!!!! LOL!!!!!! This should never be attempted by anyone in their right (or wrong) state of mind, because you won't have a right state of mind when it's over! LOL!!! I know I've said this once before on a smoke awhile back...I should be more careful what I ask for...I just might get it!

Seriously though, my lesson learned to pass on to others right here and now (just in case I forget in closing later) is to watch your drip pan sizing if you choose to use one. Carefully select one which doesn't protrude excessively outwards into the normal path of heated gases in the smoking chamber. It definately became an issue here, skewing my chamber thermometer readings, reducing efficiency of the smoker, and the worst part is that I didn't recognize it as being a strong possibility until long after the fact. I guess I was tossing too many variables into the picture and lost focus on what probably should have caught my attention much, much earlier.

I knew there would be something coming from this before it was over...and we're not even close to finished yet. So, I'll definately let you know of anything else happening...good, bad, planned or otherwise.

OK, so I'm just playing the waiting game now...at last...shrinkage and internal temps.

With the "extended" plateau being every bit as unforgiving as you could even have nightmares about, I have decided to play it safe...fat cap or not, wet smoke or not. I feel that pulling for separation and finishing will be in order @ 165-168* instead of higher temps. This, I feel is a special circumstance where the final product's outcome could be deteriorating rapidly beyond these temps. So, I gotta play it safe...

Oh my, I'm about dyin' for burnt ends already...7:36 AM here...about 7 or 8 more hours (MAYBE LESS?) to wait for crispy, smokey, juicy, marbled and carmelized....oops! Can you tell I'm tired already? Getting quite goofy, I think.

Of coarse, I'll follow up later when something changes....i THINK i'LL STILL BE STANDING TO SEE IT TO THE END...HAVING MUCHO TROUBLE TYPING NOW...Hand (oops) coordination is getting really lousy now...

Thanks all!

post #30 of 73
Holey Moley Eric, you could write a book on just this one smoke!!!! lmao icon_mrgreen.gif
But ya know how good it's gonna be when ya eat it!!!! tongue.gif
post #31 of 73
Thread Starter 
Yeah, man, I had to keep busy doing something just to stay awake! LOL!!!

So, I thought I'd just keep piling on more to the heap of posts and share as much as I could.

I'm almost ready to pull, separate and wrap the flat for resting...oh, I mustn't forget the burnt ends!

This one is about to break my previous all-time smoke record of 17 hours...that was a 9+ lb picnic with lousy weather and GOSM burner control valve problems which caused me to dial in temps @ 185-205* to finish the smoke...either that or run it @ ~280*...what a night...first all-nighter I did too, I think.

Patiently waiting here:

Foil, towels, cutting board, sharp knife, jerky rack for burnt ends to play on, and stomach are all ready for the pull! LOL!!!!!

post #32 of 73
Is this where you wrap it in foil and towels and put it in a cooler to finish cooking? How long will it stay in the cooler, and are you trying to reach a particular I.T.? How about the digital Therm, is that gonna stay in the meat for monitoring? This is great. You have practically taken the learning curve out of the equation. Will do Prime Rib next...Please...OK, after you've caught up on your sleep...PDT_Armataz_01_12.gif
post #33 of 73
Thread Starter 

Yeah, I'm shooting for 170* internal with the extreme plateau period (would have probably went to almost 180* if not for that).

The flat and point will be separated from each other...flat goes directly to foil and towel wrap/coolering...this allows the meat to finish absorbing the thermal energy, and slowly cool down, which allows the meat juices to redistribute throughout the meat as best it can. I like to leave the probe in my wrapped cuts, just so I can get an idea how the temp drop curve is going, and I like to wait until it comes down to about 145* or less before slicing.

The point, well now, this is the really really good stuff...burnt ends...we have fallen in love with 'em after only having them just 5, no wait, 6 days ago. Cubed, sauced and re-smoked to carmelize and get a bit of crispy crunch on the outside, and when you take a bite, the juices from all that wonderfully marbeled cut of smokey goodness just start oozing into your mouth and....oh, man!!!!!! I can't say anymore...gotta have these now!!!!

OK, I'll be alright in a minute...LOL!!!!!!!!! Hope you will too, heh-heh!

I'll post a few key pics and narration of that as it unfolds.

Now, as for the Prime Rib, my wife has been checking store sale papers, etc., waiting for a good deal...almost always right before Christmas is the time...we'll see...she may not want it smoked though...I smoke alot of goodies lately, so she may want to try her hand woth the big "O". She does turn out a great Prime Rib, I must admit, just not smoked...oooh well.

There's always chance, though! biggrin.gif

This has turned into a rather large thread, which I expected, but not this large...lotsa stuff trying to whip me lastnight.

I'm still waiting for the pull and separation...seems like I may have hit a second stall. Passing 168* IT just seems impossible...been there almost 90 minutes and chamber temps are still lon target.

I think I just now hit 18 hours...aaaaah baby, my probe alarm is talking to me! Time to pull and work some more majic!

Back ASAP!

post #34 of 73
So is it the norm if your are slicing the flat to take it to 170 deg? I've take mine to 190ish and it wasn't dry. Just thinking that 170 would be a little tough still? Just curious.

Oh Eric I do have a rack of spares on & ABTS smoking away on my Vault. And since I've been following this post and hankering for some beef I'm also smoking a chuck. I was at Sams early this morning and again stared at a brisket but didn't pull the trigger. It was a nice flat at $2.96/lb. Just didn't want to deal w/ a long smoke as your smoke freaked me a bit! icon_mrgreen.gif
post #35 of 73
Eric - the most incredible post I have ever seen. Can't wait to see the finish. Hope you can stay awake long enough. Great for us new to this. Thanks.
post #36 of 73
Thread Starter 
Yeah Mark, actually, I would go to 180*, but the plateau was kicking my butt forever. Problem was too large of drip pan for the smoke grate size. From the looks and feel of it during separation, foiling, cubing, etc., it looks pretty darn good as is. The thing about slicing is, if you have a bit tougher cut than you like, just cut accross the grain or at a biased slice. Works great for thick or thin sliced. My main concern with the long stall was drying out the flat, and as the pics to come will show, this didn't happen, so I am very pleased with the outcome so far.

This smoke was by no means a normal thing for this size of packer. Now, if you grab a flat cut, and do a bit of trimming, but leave a cover of fat where there is some, it won't take anywhere near the time this full untrimmed packer took. I've done trimmed flats in 7-8 hours at 180* +. Points can take a bit longer with the heavier end of the slab.

I'll come back on with pics and such...got the point into burnt ends and flat resting in foil. Drippings pan is cooling in the cold SNP for fat removal and transformation to a sause for the flat, if I can make it all come together...

Straight up 12 noon here, came close to being lunch...late lunch or early dinner, anyway.

Back soon! Still sorting my photo folders for uploads and sequencing.

post #37 of 73
Eric that looked like a adventure. Several post back you stated you dropped the chamber temp? Why did you do that?
post #38 of 73
He wanted to extend the plateau as he thought he reached it to quick, the temp was rising and he wanted it to last. (Lesson Learned) Trust your probes and no second guessing.
Their canceling and delaying flights due to the storm here in the NE, other wise I would need directions. Hope your napping. You deserve it. Ps. Can you post how you did the BE's?
post #39 of 73
Looks great.
Darn you guys and your reasonable beef prices! I have to give $3.50 - $4.50/ pound for brisket.
post #40 of 73
Thread Starter 
I had a good temp rise through the 40-140* range and nice steady climb up to 157/158*, and hadn't seen a stall at that point, so that's where I made the decision to back off with temps and try to let it soak...a stall didn't seem to coming anytime soon, but when I backed the temps dowm it took a major dive...never saw anything like before. I didn't want to fly passed the plateau...mother nature knew better I guess.

Also, the drip pan became a serious issue, acting as a heat baffle...this was the really big kicker to the whole situation. I ended up just riding out the stall for 8 hours, because I really wanted the drippings for sauce.

Did OK, though...back to pic sorting for ongoing finish icon_mrgreen.gif

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