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Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
GeorgeFromOz

Cooking overnight

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Hi brains trust,

I have had my KK for about 6 months now and I am finally starting to feel comfortable in her presence. In fact, I think I might be catching some feelings.

Anyway, the next challenge is doing an overnight cook. I have tried it once but had to throw out the meat as the temp climbed too much and apparently I am a heavy sleeper. 
 

I was wondering if any of you guys have experience with an automatic temp controller/blower. Do have any experiences you can share or recommendations?

Thanks.

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George I have a Smartfire set up.
It’s excellent.
Alarms, variable fan speed, 3 food probes, holds a very constant temperature.
And what I like most is that I can drive away and check in on temps and alter the temps while completely absent from the cook.


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I don’t have any gadgets for temp control or blower bug you’re KK will hold them temp well enough once right unless you got an air leak somewhere. 
 

chances are you had the vents open too much before you went to bed and that’s why the temp climbed. If you can fiddle with the vents to get it at the right temp and it sits there an hour you should be able to sleep peacefully overnight. 
 

what are you trying to cook and at what temp?

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Thanks @Basher I look into a smartfire.

 

thanks @Troble that’s probably right. The biggest change I have made that has made it easier is not fill the basket as much. For some bazaar reason I felt to need to fill it to the brim. More fuel more, heat right? I also have some really uneven charcoal, if I hit a larger chunk the temp spikes. Generally I cook pork butt and chuck. I tend not to cook brisket as I am still scarred from having to throw them out. Need to back on the horse I suppose.

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Thanks [mention=3378]Basher[/mention] I look into a smartfire.
 
thanks [mention=3485]Troble[/mention] that’s probably right. The biggest change I have made that has made it easier is not fill the basket as much. For some bazaar reason I felt to need to fill it to the brim. More fuel more, heat right? I also have some really uneven charcoal, if I hit a larger chunk the temp spikes. Generally I cook pork butt and chuck. I tend not to cook brisket as I am still scarred from having to throw them out. Need to back on the horse I suppose.

That’s not really true. Always fill your basket to the brim. Air+fuel=heat. If you control the airflow properly, your temperature will stay consistent. Perhaps you’re lighting too much coal in the first place?

Even with a controller, you have to restrict airflow with the top vent..the controller only adds air, it can’t take it away if the temperature gets too high.


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As long as you have a very stable well built fire and you let your KK stabilize and heat soak completely (I would suggest at least two hours without the meat on and one additional hour after the meat is on before you go to bed) it shouldn’t deviate no more then 15 degrees overnight. No need to use a temp control device.

Some tips that will help you:
-give yourself a lot of time at least two hours before you want to start your cook before lighting
-don’t pour your charcoal into the basket, this will restrict airflow heavily
-hand select the charcoal (I like fist sized chunks) and place them in the basket
-light a small tennis ball sized portion of your charcoal
-let your KK come up to temp slowly and gradually
-once near your desired temp you can close the bottom vent to the pencil sized hole and the top vent will prob be 1/16th-1/4th of a turn open at most to maintain smoking temps
-Remember tiny adjustments on the top vent will adjust your vacuum and will drastically change your temperatures, the bottom vent doesn’t effect temperatures nearly as much
-give your KK as long as possible to heat soak and stabilize at a temperature without you touching the vents
-when adding the meat keep the lid open as briefly as possible, the added oxygen will stoke your fire, closing the bottom vent while opening the grill helps just remember to open it again after closing the lid.
-after adding the meat allow the kk to stabilize again for at least an hour before going to bed
-time is key, don’t rush this

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You can use a controller but you don’t have to. If you like tech and toys by all means get one. I have three, and never use them anymore! You only need three temps for your KK. Low and slow which is anywhere from 200 to 280. Roasting at 350. And a hot grilling/ pizza fire which you don’t need to measure, you see it. Barely crack the vents top and bottom and you’ll get the low and slow. And only start a LITTLE charcoal. Roasting at 350 is just a little more open on the vents, you’ll learn it quick enough, but again only start a little charcoal. For L&S and for roasting start only a half charcoal chimney at the most. For a hot fire start up a full chimney. That’s it. You will learn to gauge your fire temp by reading the smoke output, you won’t even need the thermometer. Yeah, you’ll get that good! And then you sleep peacefully, confident.

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20 hours ago, mguerra said:

You only need three temps for your KK.

I am in this camp. Having a thermometer in your BBQ gives us the comfort of precision but I tend to simply use it as a rough guide.  Just so long as the temps are in the neighbour hood of where I need to be, I’m happy.  

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5 hours ago, tekobo said:

I am in this camp. Having a thermometer in your BBQ gives us the comfort of precision but I tend to simply use it as a rough guide.  Just so long as the temps are in the neighbour hood of where I need to be, I’m happy.  

I also subscribe to this method. 

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