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Overnight on the smoker

cooker613

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i have a kamado joe, big joe. Have had numerous tasty cooks with it. But I have a Dutch oven question. Has any one done an overnight cook on their smoker? I was thinking of getting it up to ~500, putting in my stew (cholent) shutting it down and cooking it in the falling over. That’s how it was done in Europe 100 years ago, (in the village baker’s oven). To eat the next day for lunch. Does this seem like a workable plan or have I lost it completely? Any input is greatly appreciated.
Thanks
 

TomKnollRFV

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I don't see why it wouldn't work. The only difference between this and any other smoke would be the dutch oven. Might want to be careful removing things the following day, as as I understand, those kamado grills keep their heat insanely well. I'd leave room in the dutch oven just for bubbling etc, you never know what crazy things happen when asleep.
 

KrisUpInSmoke

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Do you have a thermometer to measure the temp inside the kamado and even alert you if it goes too low? I'd just be worried about meat sitting at an unsafe low temp too long, uncooked or cooked, and that it might make you sick. I don't know much about kamados, so can't comment there. Sounds like it could work. Would be great if it works!
I've seen stews made similarly with Sun ovens and, more specifically, special bags that cook without energy use, wonderbag, so it's doable.
 

cooker613

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Do you have a thermometer to measure the temp inside the kamado and even alert you if it goes too low? I'd just be worried about meat sitting at an unsafe low temp too long, uncooked or cooked, and that it might make you sick. I don't know much about kamados, so can't comment there. Sounds like it could work. Would be great if it works!
I've seen stews made similarly with Sun ovens and, more specifically, special bags that cook without energy use, wonderbag, so it's doable.
I do have thermometers. Any ideas on safe / unsafe temps?
 

KrisUpInSmoke

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"It is important to remember that bacteria grow faster in the same warm temperatures, so extra care should be taken to make sure perishable food doesn’t spend too long in the Danger Zone. That is temperatures between 40 and 140 ˚F when perishable food spoils rapidly. Foods that should be served hot or cold should not spend more than one hour in the Danger Zone when temperatures are above 90 ˚F, and two hours when temperatures are below 90 ˚F.

What is the Danger Zone?

The Danger Zone is the temperature range in which bacteria can grow faster. Bacteria can actually double in number in as little as 20 minutes when perishable food is kept in the Danger Zone. In order to steer clear of the Danger Zone, you should always:

  • Keep cold food, at or below 40 °F, in the refrigerator, in coolers, or in containers on ice.
  • Limit the time coolers are open. Open and close the lid quickly. Do not leave coolers in direct sunlight.
  • Keep foods served hot at or above 140 °F, in chafing dishes, warming trays, slow cookers or on the grill. You can keep cooked meats hot by setting them to the side of the grill rack, not directly over the coals where they could overcook.
  • Use a food thermometer to check the safe recommended temperatures.
  • Never leave food between 40 and 140 ˚F for more than two hours. If the temperature is above 90 °F, food should not be left out more than one hour."
https://www.foodsafety.gov/blog/2016/05/memorial-day-danger-zone.html

I think I've read @daveomak post on keeping food at the right temp, not only after it's cooked, but particularly also not to leave it in a state where it's not cooking for a period of time. I wish I had copied what he wrote when I read it. Maybe he will stop and comment or you can PM him.

Now that you described how well the kamado holds heat on the tandoori chicken post, it sounds doable. If you're already sure it will hold temp for the period you need, maybe it would be ok. Without knowing, a wireless digital thermometer with a probe in the food for internal temp and one on the grate for cooking/grill temp, that can alert you if temp gets too low, would be the only way to be sure it's been at a safe temp the whole time since you want to turn the grill off and cook with residual heat. Although, I don't know that a probe would work in stew...lol. It should be good enough just to know from the grate probe that the cooking temp is high enough the whole time the food is in there.

We probably already do some risky things with some of us leaving smoked meats wrapped for hours before eating them and smoking sometimes at such low temperatures. From what I've read, cooking doesn't kill all of the things that can make you sick but most of them, and then they can multiply when food isn't cooked or kept at the right temp. While most of us can usually deal with what's left after cooking and sometimes even with improperly kept food, infants, elderly and those with compromised immune systems are more susceptible to illness.

It does sound like a great idea. Hope you'll post a thread if you do it.
 
Last edited:

cooker613

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"It is important to remember that bacteria grow faster in the same warm temperatures, so extra care should be taken to make sure perishable food doesn’t spend too long in the Danger Zone. That is temperatures between 40 and 140 ˚F when perishable food spoils rapidly. Foods that should be served hot or cold should not spend more than one hour in the Danger Zone when temperatures are above 90 ˚F, and two hours when temperatures are below 90 ˚F.

What is the Danger Zone?

The Danger Zone is the temperature range in which bacteria can grow faster. Bacteria can actually double in number in as little as 20 minutes when perishable food is kept in the Danger Zone. In order to steer clear of the Danger Zone, you should always:

  • Keep cold food, at or below 40 °F, in the refrigerator, in coolers, or in containers on ice.
  • Limit the time coolers are open. Open and close the lid quickly. Do not leave coolers in direct sunlight.
  • Keep foods served hot at or above 140 °F, in chafing dishes, warming trays, slow cookers or on the grill. You can keep cooked meats hot by setting them to the side of the grill rack, not directly over the coals where they could overcook.
  • Use a food thermometer to check the safe recommended temperatures.
  • Never leave food between 40 and 140 ˚F for more than two hours. If the temperature is above 90 °F, food should not be left out more than one hour."
https://www.foodsafety.gov/blog/2016/05/memorial-day-danger-zone.html

I think I've read @daveomak post on keeping food at the right temp, not only after it's cooked, but particularly also not to leave it in a state where it's not cooking for a period of time. I wish I had copied what he wrote when I read it. Maybe he will stop and comment or you can PM him.

Now that you described how well the kamado holds heat on the tandoori chicken post, it sounds doable. If you're already sure it will hold temp for the period you need, maybe it would be ok. Without knowing, a wireless digital thermometer with a probe in the food for internal temp and one on the grate for cooking/grill temp, that can alert you if temp gets too low, would be the only way to be sure it's been at a safe temp the whole time since you want to turn the grill off and cook with residual heat. Although, I don't know that a probe would work in stew...lol. It should be good enough just to know from the grate probe that the cooking temp is high enough the whole time the food is in there.

We probably already do some risky things with some of us leaving smoked meats wrapped for hours before eating them and smoking sometimes at such low temperatures. From what I've read, cooking doesn't kill all of the things that can make you sick but most of them, and then they can multiply when food isn't cooked or kept at the right temp. While most of us can usually deal with what's left after cooking and sometimes even with improperly kept food, infants, elderly and those with compromised immune systems are more susceptible to illness.

It does sound like a great idea. Hope you'll post a thread if you do it.
Thanks for the info, very informative and helpful.
 

TomKnollRFV

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As a thing to consider; get your grill up to the 500f, and then stop feeding it, and just monitor how long it takes to get it down to unsafe temps. So you know about how long the time frame is. As I was told by a sales man <So he might have been full of it> The big ones if really well stoked first, can keep above 200f+ for 20 hours. <Not sure if true> but you might want to just do a trial run to see if the temps hold safely over night.
 

cooker613

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As a thing to consider; get your grill up to the 500f, and then stop feeding it, and just monitor how long it takes to get it down to unsafe temps. So you know about how long the time frame is. As I was told by a sales man <So he might have been full of it> The big ones if really well stoked first, can keep above 200f+ for 20 hours. <Not sure if true> but you might want to just do a trial run to see if the temps hold safely over night.
Thanks for the input. I was thinking along those lines too. Planned to close it down to where I do my briskets and see how long I can maintain. I figure I’ll need 18 or 19 hours. Cholent is not a dish that can be hurried.
 

TomKnollRFV

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Thanks for the input. I was thinking along those lines too. Planned to close it down to where I do my briskets and see how long I can maintain. I figure I’ll need 18 or 19 hours. Cholent is not a dish that can be hurried.
I had to wiki the dish- but it looks good. I'm guessing at the 18-19 hour guess you might need to feed the cooker more in the morning. I am looking forward to seeing this cook and maybe a recipe. The entirety of my Jewish cuisine has really been Matzo ball soup. <I've also begun to wonder if I can do sheets of Matzo bread on my grill, specifically to crush up for making Matzo ball>

What style of Cholent are you doing? Just curious!
 

cooker613

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I had to wiki the dish- but it looks good. I'm guessing at the 18-19 hour guess you might need to feed the cooker more in the morning. I am looking forward to seeing this cook and maybe a recipe. The entirety of my Jewish cuisine has really been Matzo ball soup. <I've also begun to wonder if I can do sheets of Matzo bread on my grill, specifically to crush up for making Matzo ball>

What style of Cholent are you doing? Just curious!
Hummm, that’s my fear. If it can’t go on by itself, I can’t do it. Not to be esoteric, but being an orthodox shabbas observer, I can’t add fuel, close it down, or even open it except to remove the pot. Can’t do anything that would effect the level of the fire.

As to my cholent, i tend towards an ashikifardi ( a mixture of ashkanizi and Sephardi styles). Beef, lamb, potatos, wheat berries, chickpeas, and Sephardi spices. Pop in oven (or slow cookers) before the sabbath starts on Friday night and eat for shabbas lunch on Saturday.

PS, lightly smoked matzah balls are very good under pot roast brisket and gravy ( my bubbie’s style)
 

TomKnollRFV

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Hummm, that’s my fear. If it can’t go on by itself, I can’t do it. Not to be esoteric, but being an orthodox shabbas observer, I can’t add fuel, close it down, or even open it except to remove the pot. Can’t do anything that would effect the level of the fire.

As to my cholent, i tend towards an ashikifardi ( a mixture of ashkanizi and Sephardi styles). Beef, lamb, potatos, wheat berries, chickpeas, and Sephardi spices. Pop in oven (or slow cookers) before the sabbath starts on Friday night and eat for shabbas lunch on Saturday.

PS, lightly smoked matzah balls are very good under pot roast brisket and gravy ( my bubbie’s style)
Ahh. I understand. Then I would very much so suggest a trial run...

If you had to, couldn't you coil coal around the dutch oven to burn through out the night? I'm not sure if that is allowed by religious custom or not. Still, I imagine if that sales man didn't utterly BS me, it might at least hold heat over night!
 

cooker613

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Great suggestion. Will play with it after this shabbas. Will be making some beercar chicken for shabbas dinner and am smoking up some pastrami on Sunday. I’m thinking I may need another smoker. oy!
 

nanuk

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just for some info:

I read an article on an outdoor wood fired brick oven.
it was initially heated to HOT with wood, then all the remaining embers/ashes were removed.
then pizza was cooked, and some other fast cookers.
day 2, bread was baked, and some other stuff cooked like a regular very hot oven, chicken, ribs....
day 3, a beef roast, big pot of stew, and a big pot of chili was slow cooked the whole day.
day 4... it had cooled enough that the builder built another fire

so, from about 4:00pm in the afternoon of day 1, til late evening of day 3 ( over 48 hours ) the oven held enough heat to cook!

the key is insulation.
maybe get some welders blankets and wrap your cooker if it won't retain heat long enough
remember, they STILL use straw boxes, insulated boxes, etc to slow cook food.
 

TomKnollRFV

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I'm waiting to hear back on your experiences with this Cooker. Also begging matza meal off ya. I have always preferred Matza Ball soup to dumpling soup!
 

cooker613

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I'm waiting to hear back on your experiences with this Cooker. Also begging matza meal off ya. I have always preferred Matza Ball soup to dumpling soup!
Well matzah balls are my wife’s domaine. But, to be completely honest, she makes the world’s best matzah balls. Always welcome to have some.
 

TomKnollRFV

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Ha maybe we can work some thing out to send me the matza meal. My method for making them likely isn't remotely the proper way or kosher. Since I lack schmaltz, I use butter and oil and I make mine with garlic and pepper etc.
 

cooker613

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Ha maybe we can work some thing out to send me the matza meal. My method for making them likely isn't remotely the proper way or kosher. Since I lack schmaltz, I use butter and oil and I make mine with garlic and pepper etc.
Getting matzah is no problem. And creative people can always work it out.
Aside from the kosher issues, butter seems like an odd flavor for a matzah ball. But that may be cultural. And olive oil is fine, not as fabulous as my bubbie’s but even my wife uses oil something about heart attacks). Herbs, garlic, flavorings all interesting. I’ve even seem “matzah balls” from Mississippi that use ground pecans instead of matzah meal. Tried them one Passover, tasty but way too rich.
 

TomKnollRFV

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Getting matzah is no problem. And creative people can always work it out.
Aside from the kosher issues, butter seems like an odd flavor for a matzah ball. But that may be cultural. And olive oil is fine, not as fabulous as my bubbie’s but even my wife uses oil something about heart attacks). Herbs, garlic, flavorings all interesting. I’ve even seem “matzah balls” from Mississippi that use ground pecans instead of matzah meal. Tried them one Passover, tasty but way too rich.
I would think they'd be better for a dessert style Matzah Ball....like done in regular water, served with a simple syrup kind of thing..actually..that..sounds good.

I just know for me to buy matza meal, it's some outrageous price, like 8 bucks for a small bag of meal. There isn't a strong Jewish culture in my area, which I suspect is why it's so expensive, few people buy it. I should really look into making my own, as I understand, I don't need a wood fired oven to do so. <I know some breads you almost truly need one>
 

cooker613

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I would think they'd be better for a dessert style Matzah Ball....like done in regular water, served with a simple syrup kind of thing..actually..that..sounds good.

I just know for me to buy matza meal, it's some outrageous price, like 8 bucks for a small bag of meal. There isn't a strong Jewish culture in my area, which I suspect is why it's so expensive, few people buy it. I should really look into making my own, as I understand, I don't need a wood fired oven to do so. <I know some breads you almost truly need one>
If you can get matzah, it’s as simple as simple can be. Just take the matzah break them up in your food processor and then just whizz them around until it’s matzah meal. Maybe a minute or two.
Appreciate the potential bread trade, but if it’s not kosher...
 

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