1. Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

general question

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by nottooyoungtosmoke, Dec 23, 2005.

  1. nottooyoungtosmoke

    nottooyoungtosmoke Newbie OTBS Member

    well guys heres one of my many many questions, but i should keep you all busy if your not smokin or anything. well here goes, i would like to know how a smoker works, and how the meat is cooked and kept moist and things like that. im a little weird about things like this, i didnt go for my drivers license until i new the basics of how a car works, and same with other things, i guess i love to learn. some help would greatly be appreciated.

    Mark
     
  2. jamesb

    jamesb Smoking Fanatic

    Well, you asked a complicated question that is pretty easy to answer... and since, nobody else has stepped up... I'll try to paint with broad strokes here... A smoker works just like an indoor convection oven, only with smoke, from burning wood of some sort (wood, charcoal, lump, pellets etc.), involved... That is you have heated air moving around the cook chamber and around the food... In the most basic configuration, a firebox on one end, a cook chamber in the middle and an exhaust stack on the other. The heated air from the firebox moves through the cook chamber and out of the stack creating a draft (moving heated air/smoke particles). Now there are various other designs, like the Weber Smokey Mountain and such where you have the coals underneath the food with a barrier of some sort such as a water pan in between the fire and food, but they follow the same principals of moving heated air/smoke past the food to cook it.

    Humidity in the pit is created in a few ways. First, burning wood (unless it is bone dry and therefor, not providing much flavor, but well seasoned wood is best) will release moisture from water trapped within. The meat itself will give up moisture as it cooks and the fat and collagen melts and breaks down releasing the water trapped there in. If you have a well sealed pit, a lot of this moisture will remain in the pit, some, of course, will go out the stack with the air flow. You can also introduce humidity in a pit by using a water pan, tray etc.

    Keeping the end product nice and juicy/moist is where the art of BBQing lies.. You need to balance cooking temps and time to reach internal temps and texture of the various meats you are cooking. All along the way, you need to keep a clean burning fire to give you that smokiness that you are trying to achieve from BBQing in the first place and to avoid the dreaded creosote that ruins so many early attempts of the BBQ newbie...

    Did any of this make sense? If not ask and I will try to break it down further...

    James.
     
  3. I have seen smokers all over and one of the best smoker that you will find is the tipe that Spicewine Ironworks makes you cook with wood / charcoal and you have a steeming gownig on at the same time. I have and I have seen 6 World Championship Barbecue teams use this tipe of smokers. and I have One smiller to that I use for My BBQ Championship team becuse I have had complant me \complat to then that my chicke to them was to juicey = they must think that the chicken need to be dryer?
    They that it was to juicey will I will say they Neve had Chicken cooked right! I got 4 place in Chicken at 2005 World Champion American Royal BBQ, 2004 World Champion Pork Butt at the Royal but there was Only 500 teams I will let you think About that.
    it took me a year to get whew i an right now I smooke so much that I am always trying ant lest One new rub when I go to a comptionor on the extra that I have once you have a rub then you have to deside what kind of smoke flavor you want to to the meat and keep record what you do so that you know what you didd last time so you can repet if you want . an when I try to smooke at210-225 and nothing above 250 for me it is low and slow.