Newbie Hello

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by lauralee, Jul 31, 2013.

  1. Hi, I'm Laura from California.  Brand new to smoking and VERY excited about it.  I've been getting Jeff's Smoking Meat emails for a couple years now and dreaming about the day I get a smoker.

    OK, I had a charcoal smoker that I used a couple times with good results but made a huge mess and I had trouble keeping the heat steady (never really used charcoal before...)  When we moved my hubby begged me to leave it behind, so I did.  Then we said we'd get an electric one but we plan on moving again in 1 to 3 years and he was hoping to hold me off until then.

    However... we're both on an elimination diet for food allergies and one of the items on the diet is to have grass fed beef instead of corn fed (something about corn being the allergen)  So off I went to the "grass fed beef" butcher shop to stock up and the very helpful man told me "cook grass fed steaks low and slow" -- all I heard was SMOKER time! 

    So I told hubby -- we need that smoker now!  3 days later a 40" masterbuilt electric smoker arrived with some apple wood chips.  I put it together last night, seasoned it this morning, and cooked some beef and chicken in it tonight. Hubby is not as into smoke flavor as I am but he will come around, I am confident.

    My steaks only came out so so in that the meat thermometer said they were done when they clearly were not.  I should have just trusted myself with the finger press test, one of them was pretty raw inside (I like medium rare).  The chicken is really good. 

    I want to smoke a turkey, salmon and trout, beef ribs and some bigger beef cuts, for example I've never made a brisket.

    I want to smoke everything!

    I am interested if anyone here has experience with smoking grass fed beef compared to corn fed.  Do you guys smoke steaks successfully or is smoking mostly for bigger cuts?

    I am also interested in which wood chips are good with which meats.

    Also, if you smoke something big and have a lot of left overs any tips on reheating w/out drying stuff out?

    Nice to meet all of you!

  2. webowabo

    webowabo Master of the Pit

    Howdy laura. Congrats on the new smoker. I dont own an electric myself but I hear nothing but good things.
    As far as grass fed ive never prepared them either..
    Smalls cuts can be smoked sure.. a good thick steak you can do reverse sear on them.
    Try the search bar tool above us ... and pretty much skys the limit. Just search
    Reverse sear
    Smoking steaks
    Grass fed beef
    Reheating pulled pork
    Etc etc..
    . There is alot to learn from this site... hope I helped some...

    Welcome to SMF
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Laura, evening and welcome to the forum.....  Steaks.......  try what is called a reverse sear.....   smoke for awhile at low temps below 110 ish... (about 1 hours) then sear on an electric grill, or under the broiler, or in a cast iron skilltet.....      something to get the outside charred and leave the inside pink.....   know what I mean...   dive in.....   Dave
  4. Thanks guys!  I will look up the reverse sear.  I actually did sear the steaks in a cast iron skillet, but I did it before the smoking.
  5. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Hi Laura! :welcome1: to SMF!!! We're happy you found us! You've come to the right place, we have over 50,000 members who just love to share their experience and over 1,000,000 posts describing it! Yea that’s right over 1,000,000!

    The search bar at the top can be your best friend when you are trying to find answers to your questions but you can still ask too if you want!

    We have an Articles section that is full of great information about smoking to include a lot of recipes and instructionals. Check it out there is a lot to learn in there!

    Would you do us a favor and add your location to your profile, it helps others to know where you are when they offer advice, Thanks!

    You might want to check out Jeff's Free 5 day E-Course, it will teach you all the basics plus a whole lot more!
  6. Laura[​IMG]

    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 We all have our own taste.

    Your going to love your MES40. Hope hubby comes around to your taste of smoke.

    I fill my MES40 up when I smoke. Then vacuum seal and freeze the leftovers.

    Happy smoken.

  7. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Welcome aboard, Laura!  This place is great for sharing ideas on smoking, grilling, curing, etc.  Just ask when you can't find the answer to a question and someone here will have the answer.  

    Congrats on the new MES!  For ease of use and consistent smoke, you should consider getting an AMNPS...a little smoke generator from A-Maze-N Products (site sponsor's link at bottom of the page) that puts out hours of perfect smoke without needing to reload.  The MES and the AMNPS is a match made in heaven!  And you mentioned your probe wasn't accurate - that's a common issue with the MES.  I wouldn't trust the stock temp gauge, but would add an accurate and reliable digital thermometer to your arsenal.  A good one is the Maverick ET-732.

    Good luck and have fun!

  8. lancer

    lancer Smoking Fanatic

    Hello Laura, and welcome to the site.

    As has been said there is a world of info here a search away.  As far as leftover BBQ though my experience is that the power button on your microwave is your best friend.  A lower setting like 30-40% and a little patience go a long way to preserving the taste and texture of leftovers of all kinds and even in keeping rare meat rare.

  9. He will -- I told him the same thing I say when I leave lights on or forget to pick up after myself  -- "Don't worry, you'll get used to it..." [​IMG]   Though last night he did make me take a shower before going to bed.  The smoke was in my hair - all over me.  To me it smelled like a campfire, which can only be a good thing.

    My cousin called this morning, he is a fisherman in Alaska and can get me wild salmon at a great price and told me his smoking method so I'm very excited about that. 

    I like the idea of smoking a bunch at once, vacuum sealing and freezing it.
  10. kathrynn

    kathrynn Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    [​IMG]to SMF!  We are so glad you joined us! 

    We love to see pictures of what you are cooking (or what we call q-views here at SMF).  To "upload the q-views" just follow the directions here and it will be easier. If you are using a cell phone, an IPad or a kindle, go to the main SMF page and click the Mobile button. Will make the uploads a bit faster too.

    If you didn't read the "Terms of Service" notes.....please do.  There are a few things that everyone should know about those pesky little rules before plunging into the forums and some guidelines of how to interact within the forums. Off site links are not allowed here at SMF per Jeff. Not that you have done anything wrong....just a little bit of FYI for new members!

    If you need any help roaming around the forums....just holler!  Happy to help out!

  11. Dave - I just clicked this link, this is Awesome. 

    I got the rub and sauce recipes today and the e-book came with them.  I'm on my way!  I was roasting some almonds in the toaster oven today and thought to myself -- I bet I could SMOKE them.  Some homemade salami too... This morning my husband said "Maybe we could just use the smoker once or twice a month?"  No problem but it will be full of all kinds of things...  I am out of control! <evil grin>

    Kathryn - I just read the terms of service.  Thanks.  I usually don't bother with those but I would not have known about the off site links.  The abbreviated version was quite witty and certainly worth the read. :)
  12. c farmer

    c farmer Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi LauraLee,  Great group of people here.

    I have a mes 30.

    Funny thing my wifes first name is Laura and middle name is Lee.
  13. bobank03

    bobank03 Smoking Fanatic


    Get some grass fed beef and make your guy a couple of different Fatties. Once they are cooked, slice them up and freeze them and take them out a little at a time. That will help bring him around and they are easy to make and taste great. And you can't beat chicken thighs on the smoker. Tough to find grass fed chicken though [​IMG]

    Welcome to SMF! 
  14.        Hey LauraLee,

      I also hail from SD and would love to get on your cousin's delivery list( wink,wink ) , or at least get his methods from you. Who knows, maybe we can work out a salmon for Seal-O-Meal deal. Just a thought , one newbee to another.
  15. Bob B Que --

    I have a Seal-O-Meal already but he said he buys the Salmon and then takes it to a packaging place that I can pay by credit card over the phone for shipping.  So let's stay in touch and maybe we can work something out.  I'll get more details next time we talk.  I don't know if there is a limit to how much he can get.  He'll be at the cannery in a month or two.

    Regarding his method - He told my by phone and I wanted to get this typed up anyhow so here it is.  Haven't tried it yet but he swears by it.  It sounds very simple.  This is the first I've heard of not soaking the wood chips first:

    Cousin Dan's Smoked Salmon:
    1. Make fillets desired size.
    2. Dissolve 1/4 c. salt in 1 quart water for brine.  (He says it doesn't matter which type but I assume the coarser kosher or sea salt)
    3. Brine salmon desired length of time.  6 hours for barely salty, 12 hours is what he usually does, 18 hours was too salty.  Size of fillets would affect timing too.
    4. Drain and pat dry.
    5. Get smoker to 200 degrees.
    6. Lay on grill in smoker.
    7. Use Apple wood chips.  Do NOT soak chips (says soaking them first gave bitter flavor).
    8. Close vent for less O2.
    9. Hit them with a LOT of smoke for 45 minutes to an hour.
    10. Let it go another 15 minutes, don't need more smoke. 
    11. Take huge handful of dark brown sugar and sprinkle liberally all over the top of salmon.
    12. Let it go another 10 - 15 minutes.
      The brown sugar melts and runs off and makes a mess but when it cools down it's a nice glaze on the fish.
    13. You're done.  If you like the salmon dryer you can smoke it longer but it's done at this point even if it doesn't look like it.
    bob b que likes this.
  16.                 Hey LauraLee,

           duly copied and saved to the digital recipe box. I'll be sure to let you and cousin Dan know how it turns out.  

                      Thanks,  BBQ 

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