Hello from Kentucky

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by drjoejo, Oct 20, 2015.

  1. Hey everyone, I'm Joe and I live in Florence Ky.  I just purchased a new MES 30 smoker as an early Christmas present from my wife[​IMG]   I'm fairly new to smoking in general, but have played around on a charcoal grill with some success.  This is my first electric smoker and so far it really is quite the smoker.

    I've only had it for a few days, but so far I've smoked the following in an effort to play around with it and learn it's traits

    1.  Several packages of uncured brats, various brands.  All turned out good, but i see the casing can get a bet tough.  The meat inside was perfect.  These were fun as a trial and something that didnt take long, but I have to admit I like brats better grilled.

    2.  A small (2 lbs) pork loin.  I honestly was a little disappointed in this one.  I cooked it to an IT of 145 and I thought that was way too rare for my, and my family's tastes.  I pulled it at 145 and let it rest for approx 2 hours and it was just way too pink for me.  I don't know if i did something wrong, or my tastes just like pork a little more done.  I'm planning to try another one in the near future and take it up to maybe 150-155 and pull it.

    3.  Several pounds of fresh frozen Salmon filets.  These really turned out well and my wife loved them.  She's sort of a vegetarian (eats dairy and fish, but no meat or poultry).  I was extra pleased with how they turned out and will be doing more fish once fishing season starts again in this area.  I'm thinking stripped bass might be awesome smoked the same way as the salmon.

    Planning to get the AMNPS and put an exhaust chimney on.

    Anyways, looking forward to all the wealth of information on this site.  Seems like a great bunch of folks!
  2. one eyed jack

    one eyed jack Master of the Pit

    Hey Joe.  Welcome to the site and to smoking.  Congratulations on getting your new smoker.

    I cook / smoke brats to close to 165*  (Johnsonville is as good as I have available here), and then crisp up the casings by putting them directly over the coals for a short while.

    145* IT on your loin should have cooked it through.  Was it "raw pink" or "smoke ring pink"?

  3. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Welcome from SC, Joe. It's good to have you on this site.
  4. Thanks Jack/Joe for the welcome!!

    Jack - honestly the pork loin seemed raw pink and for sure not smoke ring pink.  For the life of me i can't figure out what i did wrong in terms of IT.  I've calibrated my probe thermometer with several other ones to make sure it's fairly accurate and it seems to be right on.

    I was going to just try another one and see what happens.

    Good idea about the brats and putting them on the fire after smoking.  i'll also give that a try next time.

  5. Welcome, drjoejo. Pretty much a noob myself. It takes a few go arounds to get the hang of your smoker, so don't get disheartened. Chickens are a great way to learn your smoker.

    BTW, I was born in Southern Indiana, so if you need some good Kentuckian jokes, let me know! :)
  6. thanks gw.  my parents live in south eastern Indiana, so we get over that way all the time.

    good advice on trying the chickens.  i wanted to do that next. 

    as you said it takes a while to get the hang of it, really that's just more of an excuse to drink beer!  My wife can't get mad at me if i'm actually cooking dinner and not just drinking beer, can she?
  7. one eyed jack

    one eyed jack Master of the Pit

    [​IMG]   Best luck with your future smokes.
  8. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Joe, I don't want to seem argumentative to Jack, but I like pork at 160*. To me 145* is not enough. At 145* it will surely be pink and IMO, undercooked. Also, I like to check therms in boiling water (with temp adjusted to your altitude, above sea level). If you check several to one another, they may all be off a little. The boiling water is a constant and will check each one separately. Good luck, Joe
  9. one eyed jack

    one eyed jack Master of the Pit

    There is no problem with me Joe.  Sometimes it just comes down to personal preference.  For me;  The loin tends to dry out too much to enjoy beyond 145.
  10. bauchjw

    bauchjw Master of the Pit

    I think all of us who grew up with REALLY cooked pork are wary the first few times we do 145 IT. My wife initially refused to eat it. Now if I pull it off a little late (blame it on beer consumption or conversation) she thinks it's dry! Other than that your probe may have not been centered in the thickest part? I've pushed too deep before.

    Good luck! Welcome!
  11. Thanks all, great advice!  I'll try another pork deal and see what happens.  part of the fun is learning the process and then perfecting it.

    Thanks again!!
  12. So I wanted to close the loop on my pork loin smoking.  I finally smoked another one, about the same size and left it on until an IT 155*.  It came out perfect.  Maybe the best pork loin I've ever had:)

    I think as others have pointed out, 145* IT is just too rare for my liking.

    Also my new AMNPS arrived last night so I'm going try it this weekend with some baby back ribs.  I did a test run last night with just one row and it seemed to work perfectly.  It did catch fire one time, but I'm pretty sure it was because it had too much air circulation (the breeze kinda picked up about an hour in).  I closed the chip loading deal and that took care of the problem.

    I'll post a review once I'm finished.

    Thanks again for the great advice.  It has been an enormous help with the learning curve.
  13. one eyed jack

    one eyed jack Master of the Pit

    It's good to hear that you have smoked  a loin to your liking.  That is the best thing about asking questions and getting varying opinions that wind up helping you advance with your projects.

    Congratulations on your new smoking tool.  A very good reason to plan another smoke.  [​IMG]   

    I look forward to hearing how the AMNPS works out for you this weekend.
  14. bauchjw

    bauchjw Master of the Pit

    Glad to hear it worked out! Getting all the different perspectives is why I love this forum! Hope to see some q view next time!
  15. Drjoejo, I have been fowling your thread. I am not the type to just post. I do have a thought about your AMNPS catching fire.  If you inspect your chip loader you will see the very small air holes in the end of it. That's is the reason you have to pull the loader out. Think about a RiverRat  damper. This will give you the ability to adjust your air to meet your needs.

    ALL YOU NEED IS A CORN CAN ( THAT'S WHAT I USED. ) Any standard can will do .I also used a 3/4 hole saw and some snips.  Jted
  16. Jted, excellent advice on the damper.  i think i will make one this weekend and see how it works for me.

    Thanks again!!

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