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Hello and Thanks for the Great Site

cdp4444

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Joined Aug 29, 2010
I was happy to stumble on this wealth of information here. I decided last week to learn to smoke meats so I read lots of information here to help me get started. I wanted to do a homemade style smoker so I built one from terra cotta planters and a hot plate. It works like a charm. Really holds the heat in and isn't subject to wild swings in temp.

I smoked a chicken last week with some pecan and apple wood chunks. I went a little heavy on the smoke and will cut back next time. Yesterday I smoked a pork butt for some kalua pig. Quite a tasty treat but the cooking temp was around 245-250 average for about 5 hours reaching an internal temp of about 190*. I think next time I will shoot for a bit lower and see if that won't make it even more fall apart tender. I am quite happy to have found a new hobby. Thanks for reading.

 

eman

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Welcome to SMF CDP!!!

 I think the butt would benifit from a temp around 225 and a longer smoke. did you wrap it in foil .If not try wrapping in foil w/ some apple juice at 165 and take it up to 200 /205 then rest for 1 hour b4 pulling
 

jirodriguez

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Welcome to the forum! Interesting looking smoker you got there.
 

mballi3011

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First off Welcome CDP to SMF. you'll like it here for there are alot of really good folks here that would just love to help you with just about anything to do with smoking. Now there are alot of proven recipes for some amazing things here too. So if you need sign up for the E-Course it's free and it will give you the basics of smoking and some good methods to use also. So the next big thing for you to do is go out and get you something to smoke and if you happen to have any questions just post it here and we will be happy to answer them for you.

Welcome To Your New Addiction
 

scarbelly

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Welcome to SMF - I noticed in your post that you only took the butt to 190 - if you want it to be fall apart good you need to take it to about 165 then foil and take it to 205 and let it rest in a warm (as in no ice) cooler for at least an hour wrapped in towels -
 

TulsaJeff

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CDP4444, I am very intrigued by your smoker.. care to divulge a few pictures of the inside of that baby and a few tidbits on how it all works?

I love it when folks get creative and do stuff completely out of the box..
 

richoso1

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Hello, and welcome to the SMF. I moved your thread to roll call so that everyone has a chance to welcome you. It's all good my friend.
 

meateater

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Welcome, I agree thats a unique smoker you put together.
 

tom37

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Joined Sep 24, 2009
I agree, very interesting smoker. I like it.

Welcome to the site.
 

cdp4444

Newbie
5
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Joined Aug 29, 2010
Thanks everyone for the welcoming and the tips. I was shooting for some Kalua Pig which calls for the pork butt to be wrapped in Ti leaves and tinfoil from the start with some holes poked in to allow smoke. I think I won't seal it next time from the start. I am anxious to give it another go but I think a hunk of beef or a fatty is on the agenda for this weekend. :)

I had a lot of fun putting this together. The pots are 18" but the top is called a "flower" pot and is more shallow. It was a bit tricky to find but a garden supplier had it in stock. The grill size is about 16 1/2" and I added the eye bolts so I could use hooks to handle it hot if/ when I need to add more wood chunks. The heating element is a 1000w hot plate that I rewired through a GFI outlet to serve as a breaker. I also reused the thermostat in the other side of the box. It really holds the heat in and I did pump it up to 320 or so on my test run but didn't see the need to get it much hotter. I added some foil for a makeshift gasket until I can get some fiberglass rope and a more permanent solution. Both pots came with a 1" drain hole and it seems to provide plenty of air flow. I would be happy to hear of any suggestions for improvement or answer any other questions. Thanks for expressing interest in my little brown egg. 






 

jirodriguez

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I have been kicking the idea around of doing a pork shoulder for Kalua Pork. My plan is to rub with salt, smoke it at 220° till I hit 165° internal temp. then wrap in Ti or Banana leaves (depending on what's available in Oregon... lol), and then wrap in foil. Take it till I get an internal of 205°, rest it, shred it, and hopefully enjoy some "Broke da mouth" Kalua Pig.
 

cdp4444

Newbie
5
10
Joined Aug 29, 2010
Please keep me posted Jl on how you do. Broke Da Mouth is what I am going for too.:)  

When I cooked mine there were so many juices in the foil and I poured those back into the pan with the pork. I would hate to see them get lost in the drip pan. But on the other hand the pork wasn't quite smoky enough, it was way too subtle. I am leaning towards wrapping  the pork in the leaves and having the foil under it to catch the juices but open to allow more smoke to penetrate. Then when it hits 165 folding the sides up, sealing it and taking it to the 205 or so. I know the leaves impart particular flavors too and I wonder if by the time the meat is 165 would they still do their thing? Decisions Decisions. 
 

jirodriguez

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I figure the time it takes to get the meat to165 just sitting on the rack is when it will pick up its smoke flavoring, then I will wrap in leaves and foil and let the leaves cook their flavor into it for the rest of the time.... that's the theory anyway.... lol.
 

cdp4444

Newbie
5
10
Joined Aug 29, 2010
I figure the time it takes to get the meat to165 just sitting on the rack is when it will pick up its smoke flavoring, then I will wrap in leaves and foil and let the leaves cook their flavor into it for the rest of the time.... that's the theory anyway.... lol.
I read elsewhere that someone used a disposable pan for the meat then just covered with foil after the temperature was reached. That might be a good way to get the best of both worlds because you could wrap in the leaves and toothpick it into place. Then just seal the pan up later. Always something. LOL Do keep me posted on how it turns out. 
 

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