Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you Sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

  • Announcements

    • Rick

      Members Only Fluid Forum View   08/08/2017

      Fluid forum view allows members only to get right to the meat of this community; the topics. You can toggle between your preferred forum view just below to the left on the main forum entrance. You will see three icons. Try them out and see what you prefer.   Fluid view allows you, if you are a signed up member, to see the newest topic posts in either all forums (select none or all) or in just your favorite forums (select the ones you want to see when you come to Fishing Minnesota). It keeps and in real time with respect to Topic posts and lets YOU SELECT YOUR FAVORITE FORUMS. It can make things fun and easy. This is especially true for less experienced visitors raised on social media. If you, as a members want more specific topics, you can even select a single forum to view. Let us take a look at fluid view in action. We will then break it down and explain how it works in more detail.   The video shows the topic list and the forum filter box. As you can see, it is easy to change the topic list by changing the selected forums. This view replaces the traditional list of categories and forums.   Of course, members only can change the view to better suit your way of browsing.   You will notice a “grid” option. We have moved the grid forum theme setting into the main forum settings. This makes it an option for members only to choose. This screenshot also shows the removal of the forum breadcrumb in fluid view mode. Fluid view remembers your last forum selection so you don’t lose your place when you go back to the listing. The benefit of this feature is easy to see. It removes a potential barrier of entry for members only. It puts the spotlight on topics themselves, and not the hierarchical forum structure. You as a member will enjoy viewing many forums at once and switching between them without leaving the page. We hope that fluid view, the new functionality is an asset that you enjoy .
Sign in to follow this  
bhs91

tips on smoking meat

Recommended Posts

Just bought a brinkman vertical water smoker, have used similar smokers in the past as well. I need some tips one how to achieve good temps for smoking. My current MO is to use "real charcoal", not kingsford, et al.; use a fan to keep air circulating, but I can't get the temp above 200. I switch out the charcoal after about 4-6 hours, have drilled holes in the pans, not the water one, to encourage more circulation, but to no avail. Any tips, muchas gracias!!

Thanks,

BHS

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I almost wish I could swap with you cause my Brinkman has a heck of a time staying under 200 but I always assumed it was because it did not seem to seal real tight on the bottom or the top part so there was a lot of air coming thru. If you want it hotter maybe try to put some shims in the top lid to increase circulation or maybe put a screen on the bottom so more air gets under the charcoal.Personal I would not do a thing cause it sound like it works perfect and if you are worried about getting the internal temps up you can finish it in the oven. You also might want to check you thermostat to make sure it is accurate.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you need higher temps for smoking, don't use water in the water pan. Keep the pan in place, but just line it with foil and don't fill it with water. The main purpose for the water pan is to keep the temps cooler. The brining process is what gives your meat moisture. I've cooked brined turkey, and chicken at 350 in my smoker with no water in the pan and they always turn out very moist. When slow cooking meats, I use water in the pan to help keep temps lower. Using lump charcoal as you mentioned will also help as the lump burns hotter and produces less ash than Kingsford. When excessive ash build up in the charcoal pan, it can keep temps down.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have the same smoker. IMO the charcoal pan is a poor design. Putting holes in the pan, as you mentioned, helps. They sell a grate for that pan that holds the charcoal off the bottom. That was the ticket for me.

I would not use the smoker without the water pan filled with some kind of liquid. I've used apple cider with great results.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You can use the water pan and it is a great way to maintain good smoking temps, but it is not needed for smoking like WCS said.

If you can maintain proper temperatures by doing some minor tweaks with the intake and damper, you can loose the water pan if you want to. It has nothing to do with the moisture content in the meat; just keeping uniform temp threw out the smoker. If you can do this with out the use of the water pan, I recommend it. I use gas, but for charcoal it just sucks to have to open the door and add water to the pan and then bring the heat back up.

Now, the meat market I used to work at would use a clean wet/cold rag and wipe down the big sticks of sausage while they where hanging in the smoker after they where done, I figure to help start the cool down process and possibley help the skin peel off easier. I have followed suit and do it now. Does it do mke a diff.? I do not know, but still do it. Also soaking you wood chips in water also helps release moisture in the smoker to a point, plus makes the chip burning slower.

As far as your unit and getting the temp correct, it sound like a trail and error situation. Just keep working with it and you will figure out what works to keep those temps. Like Jim said, I would not cook any meat until you know you can maintain your temps for the proper cooking lengths.

Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know this is old hat for some, but I just posted it in a Deer Cutting thread in the Hunting forum and figured it would go good here!

Good luck!

Quote:

Smoking Meat and Poultry

Where there's smoke, there's well-flavored meat and poultry. Using a smoker is one method of imparting natural smoke flavor to large cuts of meat, whole poultry, and turkey breasts. This slow cooking technique keeps them tender, too.

Smoking is slowly cooking food indirectly in the presence of a fire. This can be done by using a "smoker," which is an outdoor cooker especially designed for this purpose. A covered grill can also be used for smoking food by placing a drip pan of water beneath the meat on the grill.

Preventing Foodborne Illness

The national Fight BAC!® food safety education campaign advises adhering to the four steps in preventing foodborne illness throughout the smoking procedure.

Clean — Wash hands and surfaces often.

Separate — Don't cross-contaminate.

Cook — Cook to proper temperatures.

Chill — Refrigerate promptly.

Defrost Meat Before Smoking

Completely thaw meat or poultry before smoking. Because smoking uses low temperatures to cook food, the meat will take too long to thaw in the smoker, allowing it to linger in the "Danger Zone" (the temperatures between 40 and 140 °F) where harmful bacteria can multiply. Defrosted meat also cooks more evenly.

Never defrost food at room temperature. Keeping meat and poultry cold while it is defrosting is essential to prevent the growth of harmful bacteria. The best way to safely thaw meat and poultry is in the refrigerator. Cook or refreeze it within 1 or 2 days.

The microwave oven can be used to defrost more rapidly. Smoke the meat immediately because some areas may begin to cook during the defrosting.

Food may also be thawed in cold water. Be sure that the sink or container that holds food is clean before submerging food. Two methods may be used when thawing:

Completely submerge airtight wrapped package. Change water every 30 minutes.

Completely submerge airtight wrapped food in constantly running cold water. If thawed completely, it must be cooked immediately.

Marinate in the Refrigerator

Some recipes state to marinate meat and poultry for several hours or days, either to tenderize or add flavor. Acid in the marinade breaks down connective tissue in meats.

Always marinate food in the refrigerator, not on the counter. If some of the marinade is to be used for basting during smoking or as a sauce on the cooked food, reserve a portion of the marinade. Don't put raw meat and poultry in it. Don't reuse the marinade from raw meat or poultry on cooked food unless it's boiled first to destroy any harmful bacteria.

Partial Cooking

Some people like to cook food partially in the microwave oven or on the stove to reduce smoking time. Partially cook meat or poultry ahead of time only if the food goes immediately from the microwave or stove to the hot smoker. Partial cooking of food ahead of time allows harmful bacteria to survive and multiply to the point that subsequent cooking cannot destroy them. And once food is in the smoker, cook until it reaches a safe temperature as determined with a food thermometer.

Using a Smoker

Cook food in smokers made of materials approved for contact with meat and poultry. Don't smoke foods in makeshift containers such as galvanized steel cans or other materials not intended for cooking. Chemical residue contamination can result.

When using a charcoal-fired smoker, buy commercial charcoal briquettes or aromatic wood chips. Set the smoker in a well-lit, well-ventilated area away from trees, shrubbery, and buildings. Only use approved fire starters — never gasoline or paint thinner, for example.

Follow the manufacturer's directions for igniting charcoal or preheating a gas or electric outdoor cooker. Let the charcoal get red hot with gray ash — about 10 to 20 minutes depending upon the quantity. Pile the charcoal around the drip pan for smoking. Add about 15 briquettes about every hour. The most satisfactory smoke flavor is obtained by using hickory, apple, or maple wood chips or flakes. Soak the chips in water to prevent flare-ups and add about 1/2 cup of chips to the charcoal as desired.

Using a Covered Grill

To smoke meat and poultry in a covered grill, pile about 50 briquettes in the center of the heat grate. When they are covered with gray ash, push them into two piles. Center a pan of water between the two piles and place the food on the grill over the water pan. The water prevents flare-ups that occur when fat and meat liquids drip on coals, and steam from the water helps destroy harmful bacteria that can cause foodborne illness. Close the lid and keep the grill vents open. Add about 10 briquettes every hour to maintain the temperature in the grill.

Use Two Thermometers to Smoke Food Safely

To ensure meat and poultry are smoked safely, you'll need two types of thermometers: one for the food and one for the smoker. A thermometer is needed to monitor the air temperature in the smoker or grill to be sure the heat stays between 225 and 300 °F throughout the cooking process. Many smokers have built-in thermometers.

Use a food thermometer to determine the temperature of the meat or poultry. Oven-safe thermometers can be inserted in the meat and remain there during smoking. Use an instant-read thermometer after the meat is taken out of the smoker.

Cooking time depends on many factors: the type of meat, its size and shape, the distance of food from the heat, the temperature of the coals, and the weather. It can take anywhere from 4 to 8 hours to smoke meat or poultry, so it's imperative to use thermometers to monitor temperatures.

Smoke food to a safe minimum internal temperature.

Beef, veal, and lamb steaks, roasts, and chops may be cooked to 145 °F.

All cuts of pork to 160 °F.

Ground beef, veal and lamb to 160 °F.

All poultry should reach a safe minimum internal temperature of 165 °F.

If using a sauce, apply it during the last 15 to 30 minutes of smoking to prevent excess browning or burning.

Chill Promptly

Refrigerate meat and poultry within 2 hours of removing it from a smoker. Cut the meat or poultry into smaller portions or slices, place it in shallow containers, cover, and refrigerate. Use it within 4 days or freeze for later use.

Last Modified: April 13, 2006

Safe Food Handling

At-Risk Populations

Meat Preparation

Poultry Preparation

Egg Products Preparation

Seasonal Food Safety

Appliances & Thermometers

Foodborne Illness & Disease

Emergency Preparedness

FSIS Programs & Workforce

Production & Inspection

Food Labeling

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Good stuff fellas, i am going try a grate on the bottom to try to raise the temps and go from there. I have ribs and chicken o nthe menu this weekend and will report back!!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Guest
This topic is now closed to further replies.
Sign in to follow this  



  • Posts

    • I've got a small one waiting. Just trying to find time when I and the smoker will be in the same spot for enough hours! I have a good feeling that the week after Deer Hunting closes and Ice forms. The smoker will be doing a lot of catch up!!!
    • I wouldn't even bother going to NoDak before Nov 1. Too many yahoos. There's still plenty of guys up there later, but at least most of them are legitimate hunters
    • You can get longer but at a premium, and I'm not a huge fan because of the different firmness from back to bottom along with the groove makes sleeping awkward.  You could make one easy enough or modify a futon.  Find a used one and gut the hardware out to make your own that will blend in better.
    • $4.59/lb not sure how good or bad that is. But I am more intrigued by size and experiment with that rather than a full packer.
    • What are they running per pound?  I would be all over it if I wouldn't have just got done doing a 12 pounder on Monday . It turned out awesome... Here is what I did. Smoke setting for 2 hrs (may be able to get by an hr with the smaller brisket) Bump temp up to 225 and leave uncovered Double wrap in foil at 160 internal meat temp Pull off at 200 internal meat temp, wrap it in a towel and let it rest for 1 1/2 hrs in a cooler
    • Redirect your anger toward NCHC because its their fault this game is not televised. BigTen network and FSN offered to air it, but NCHC chose to keep it "in-house". Its all a money grab. They are hoping that people flock to their streaming service at the tune of $25 just for this game. Nope, I've got better things to do.
    • Scrapes and Rubs started popping up first week of October. The young bucks are doing most of the activity and most of it done at night or right at dawn or dusk. Monday night had 3 bucks- spike, fork and a 6 pointer come in to light rattling at 6:50 pm. They worked 2 fresh scrapes that I had put buck urine in and the fork and 6 pointer had a 5 second sparring bout then went on about there business feeding together.
    • It took Garnett, Sprewell, and Cassell about 15 games to gel. We'll have a much better feel for this team after about 10 games.
    • The walleye bite remains strong!  Report is very similar to last weeks. Walleyes are staged in front of Pine Island, Graceton Beach and Zippel Bay in 18-30'.  Anglers sorting through a few small fish for every keeper.  Most anchored up with jig and shiner.  Pink, pink/white and gold have been the best colors. Reefs holding fish as well.   Rainy River anglers finding success up and down the river.  Schools of shiners coming into river randomly right now.  When they do, the walleyes are close behind.  Some days excellent, some days catching fish but not a slam dunk based on whether shiners are moving through.  Vertical jigging tipped with a shiner while anchored is the go to method. Some anglers trolling crankbaits with success as well.  Smallmouth bass, pike and crappies showing up.    Up at the Northwest Angle, in MN waters walleyes are crushing jig and shiners. Orange and chartreuse were the hot colors this week. Big pike being caught trolling minnow baits.  In Ontario waters, minnow/shiner have been effective off of points at depth of 18-26' while anchored or trolling.  In addition to walleyes, crappies on fire and jumbo perch active!  Some muskies being caught trolling.  
  • Our Sponsors