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Hey Guys,

What type of charcoal do you use in your smoker? What is your prefered method of ignition and when and what type of wood do you prefer?

Bogan
 

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I use charcoal first and then add a mix of hickory and oak for long term smoking. I used only mesquite in the past for smoking, but I have since learned that to much of it makes for a bitter taste IMO. I keep the mesquite around now for HOT HOT grilling (steaks, chicken breasts, and such)
 

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Plain old Kingsford to get the fire going. I use a pear burner to light it. I'll add mesquite, oak, pecan or hickory depending on what I'm cooking.
 

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Too Tall said:
Plain old Kingsford to get the fire going. I use a pear burner to light it. I'll add mesquite, oak, pecan or hickory depending on what I'm cooking.
I have a MAPP gas torch to fire up the charcoal.
 

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Start with charcoal for everything.

Steaks, seafood, veggies, chicken, pork, mesquite coals only, no smoke.

Brisket, beef and pork roast, turkey, large cuts of meat, hickory and oak blend at 50/50 with smoke. Sometimes pecan only if I want to change it up a bit.

Sausage, pecan, pecan, pecan.
Sometimes use a propane torch if I am in a hurry. Otherwise a tiny bit of charcoal lighter will do.
 

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I'm not a guy, but I use Kingsford mesquite in a chimney starter for my kettle grill and use mesquite or pecan wood with a propane lighter in my Longhorn. I highly recommend a propane lighter if you have a decent sized pit. I have the kind that is a metal tube with holes in it that connects to tubing and then to the propane tank. It's especially great if you are having difficulty keeping your fire going.
 

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Its easy to grin when your ship comes in
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I always start with lump charcoal. I cannot stand the smell of Kingsford. I use Lazzari, B & B, or Central Market lump mesquite. I prefer B & B, but it can get pretty busted up in the bag. For smoke flavor, I like Pecan or Oak, but also will use Hickory. A lot of the time, I will use lump charcoal and chunks of smoke wood, but sometimes, if I can get good wood, I will start with lump and use nothing but split logs of oak and pecan. That is my favorite.
 

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sea monkey rancher
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Charles Helm said:
Like a propane burner, used for burning spines off prickly pear so that cows can eat them during tough times.
sorry, that was directed at Ifish2

i have several pear burners, no lighter fliud for me in any of my pits

live oak, post oak, hickory...

not crazy about pecan, but that's just me, too much hassle to store...bugs, rot, etc...

i always knock as much bark off the wood as poss. , seems to take the sour tannic acid taste out of the meat.

maybe some mesquite at the end for flavor., but only a whole mesquite cook for the quick stuff like steaks, chops and kabobs. it can really overpower the meat flavor

B&B lump charcoal only for the Big Green Egg..............
 

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How do you like that Big Green Egg? My neighbor has the large and loves it. I was flat amazed at how little wood it uses to and how well it holds temperature. I have 4 different cooking devices and am thinking about the Egg. I will surely have to get rid of something. The patio is getting full!
I start my fires with charcoal and cook with oak. Rarely I will use a little hickory or mesquite.
 

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sea monkey rancher
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The egg is pretty darn kewl, however I don't use it that much , because it is kinda slow to light............thus ........the dreaded gas grill for most quick stuff

the trick to lighting it is to get all the ashes out of the holes in the bottom and use a pear burner.........it is updraft , so everything needs to vent properly.

other thing i have noticed is that you have very little smoked taste unless you throw some mesquite in w the B&B

it does make a killer steak, seared outside and juicy interior. in 8 mins at 700 plus degrees.........

it makes a killer beer can chicken and holds temps beyond anythin i have ever seen.
 

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Hey Coastal, my propane burner was my Valentine's gift last year from my husband! I almost died until I realized how great it was. Definitely not a girly gift!
 

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Thanks for the info.

I grew up with a father that cooked 5 days out of 7 on one of those old cast aluminum grills. We always cooked with wood. Started the fires like a Boy Scout. The steaks and for that matter everything was great off that cooker. I have grown lazy and cook all the fast cooking stuff on a gas grill. I want to get back to the flavor of real wood cooking and have considered the Big Green Egg. Your comment about less smoke flavor bothers me with the egg.
Who makes a quality grill for the steaks and fast cooking stuff using only wood for a fuel source?
CoastalOutfitters said:
The egg is pretty darn kewl, however I don't use it that much , because it is kinda slow to light............thus ........the dreaded gas grill for most quick stuff

the trick to lighting it is to get all the ashes out of the holes in the bottom and use a pear burner.........it is updraft , so everything needs to vent properly.

other thing i have noticed is that you have very little smoked taste unless you throw some mesquite in w the B&B

it does make a killer steak, seared outside and juicy interior. in 8 mins at 700 plus degrees.........

it makes a killer beer can chicken and holds temps beyond anythin i have ever seen.
 

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You can still buy a cast aluminum grill:

The Portable Kitchen

My wife got mine from Amazon.Com. It would be nice if they were a little bigger.

I also still have the round Duchess cast aluminum model that my Dad cooked on, but the vents on the bottom have disappeared over the years.

I have started with seasoned pecan many times. Just wait until it burns down to coals before cooking. I think there may be better woods that leave a bigger bed of coals, but I have pecan trees and use what they drop. You can also use natural hardwood lump charcoal instead of briquettes.
 

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Roll Tide!
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Hard to beat the egg. I have two of them.

I like a mixture of apple and pecan for chicken and pork. I use pecan or hickory for beef.
 

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I smoked a brisket last night and used lump charcoal(from Lowe's) for my heat source and mesquite for smoke.
Tried the Minion methed(http://www.virtualweberbullet.com/fireup2.html), and it worked fairly well. The lump charcoal burned so hot I had trouble keeping the pit down below 250 until I finally choked off ALL vents and intakes.
Brisket tasted great and was reallly tender.....but not much smoke ring!
 
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