New Member From North NJ

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by sagosto, Dec 31, 2014.

  1. sagosto

    sagosto Newbie

    Hello, I am a new member from north NJ and just purchased the 30" MES using a 5X8 AMPS w/ pitmaster choice pellets. My wife and I work a lot of hours and have a newborn so we are limited to weekend-only use. I have made 2 smokes so far with the 1st being CostCo ribs (pre-rubbed) @ 275F using the 2-1-1 method which came out very firm (no breakdown) but very flavourful and pulled pork (using Meowey's BBQ Rub Plus - @ 225F and the same CostCo ribs (pre-rubbed) at 225F using the 3-2-2 method which came out MUCH MUCH better including tender ribs. The 2nd smoke got rave reviews but it still has room for improvement. I live very close to NYC so we are used to having the best food in the world (yep, I said it). However, BBQ does lack but we do have a few good places here. My goal is to have BBQ similar to those local joints. I would classify our tastes as being mostly ribs, pulled pork, chicken, and maybe a brisket. I can't think of too many other basic staples that we would make aside from maybe chicken wings. I just can't imagine us making something like meatloaf. :) I have a few questions and appreciate any helpful advice/criticism.

    1) I have followed the AMPS instructions to the word but I have not had good luck. After 10 minutes of burning (40 seconds using a propane torch), I blow out the flame but the pellets stop smoking inside the smoker. Also, 10 minutes uses up a lot of the pellets but I guess that is necessary to keep the smoking process going. What am I doing wrong?

    2) Aside from cleaning the racks, wiping down the door and the seal, and replacing the aluminium foil on the water pan and the drip tray, is there any other cleaning necessary?

    3) How do I protect my patio deck from the grease/smoke?

    4) I have read numerous threads and have never seen anyone suggest using the water pan?

    5) I have a wireless probe that I confirmed accurate (shocked the hell out of me too) with a reading of 211F with boiling water. However, my smoker appear to read 10-12F LOWER than the probe. Is this a cause of concern or should I just increase the unit's temperature to 10-12F? If so, do I need to determine the temperature delta with each use?

    6) How in the hell do you run the probe into the smoker? I went down through the vent against the door to clear the racks but it is a pain in the ass as I have to work fast to avoid heat loss and it must come out if I need to remove food.

    7) Where exactly on the probe is the measurement taken? For example, is the measurement taken at the tip of the probe? 1/2 way?

    8) The instruction manual doesn't even indicate a vent exists let alone give any explanation as to suggested use. Should I always leave it open?

    9) What is the best approach to making BBQ if I need to re-heat it? For example, if I want to bring BBQ to a friend, I'd rather not be smoking throughout the night. I realize I can cook it a head of time and then re-heat but I am concerned with quality loss with reheat?

    10) The pre-rubbed CostCo ribs come out very tasty but I prefer using my own rub. Any suggestions or is this a true trial-n-error?

    11) Should I stick with the pitmasters choice wood pellets?
  2. [​IMG]   Good afternoon and welcome to the forum, from a cloudy and cold day here in East Texas. Lots of great people with tons of information on just about  everything.  

    I'm sure one of the watt burners will along to help

  3. Glad you joined the group. The search bar at the top of any page is your best friend.
    About anything you wanna know about smoking/grilling/curing/brining/cutting or slicing
    and the list goes on has probably been posted. Remember to post a QVIEW of your smokes.
    We are all smoke junkies here and we have to get our fix. If you have questions
    Post it and you will probably get 10 replies with 11 different answers. That is
    because their are so many different ways to make great Q...
    Happy smoken.
  4. Looks like you got your questions answered

  5. sagosto

    sagosto Newbie

    Thank you sir.
  6. [​IMG]

    Happy smoken.

  7. appwsmsmkr1

    appwsmsmkr1 Meat Mopper

    For an answer to reheating bbq.

    I do agree with the food saver but just until you get one you can do this:

    It depends on what you reheating. For ribs I'll put the whole rack uncut in the deep catering tray and maybe a 1/2 cup of water and cover in heavy duty aluminum foil and put the oven on 350 for a half hour then lower the heat to 200 until you are ready to eat.

    Pulled pork, and pepper stout beef (excellent recipe takes a long time but is awesome. its a must try) same concept but instead of water use more of your sauce and reheat it slow. Both of these meathods are a moist heat. If you don't add some kind of liquid you run the risk of drying it out.

    If your going to make fatties, I suggest you make them the day of bc they tend to be dry when reheated. I prefer not to do them to transport bc they get to dry when reheated no matter what.

    Chicken is different bc of skin. Reheat in oven at a higher temp like 350 and put in a single layer on a tray if they are pieces. (chicken is difficult to master on a smoker but practice makes perfect,don't get discouraged) I haven't tried reheating a whole one.

    Hope this helps and have a happy new year!!
  8. sagosto

    sagosto Newbie

    I don't mind investing in a food saver (is that a brand?) but at first read, it felt like "overkill"? I assumed a moist reheat was possible. How much better is the food saver method?
  9. Got anything in that smoker today

  10. sagosto

    sagosto Newbie

    Wife made home made gravy and meatballs. As much as I love BBQ, I *LOVE* my wife's gravy. :) I did pick up a 12LBS Boston Butt for $1.69lbs today. I hope it freezes well.
  11. Sounds like a good price 


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