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DennisLinkletter

Everyday Misc Cooking Photos w/ details

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Well, the good news was that we hit 73F yesterday - in Iowa - in the middle of December! But, the warm weather brought very severe winds that spawned t-storms and tornadoes. Lots of wind damage north of me and widespread power outages. While we had 50 - 60 mph winds here with our t-storm last night, it wasn't nearly as bad as the folks west and north that saw 80 - 90 mph winds - and the tornadoes! My power blinked a few times, but never went out. 

I'd planned ahead and had a pork butt ready for the unseasonably warm day. Overnight cook Tuesday. Finished up mid-morning Wednesday. Guru running at 250F, indirect, with smoker pot loaded with hickory and apple chunks. Followed Meatheat's advice and trimmed a lot of fat off and liberally salted it Monday night. He says that he likes this technique better than injecting (which had been my standard practice.) Tuesday morning it got the CYM treatment with 3 Eyz rub and Dizzy Pig Crossroads. Went on the KK at 10pm. Target was 203F, but pulled it off at 200F around 10am. It had gotten so windy by that point that the Guru controller kept getting blown over and coming unplugged. I didn't catch it in time and the fire went out. Once the KK started to drop in temp, no point in leaving the butt on the grill. I wrapped it in foil and put it in the cooler in the beach towel for 3 hours before I pulled it. And YES, there's pictures!

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Dinner was pulled pork sammies! Hard to say whether Meathead's technique worked better than injecting, but the results were just as good IMHO. 

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5 hours ago, tony b said:

the warm weather brought very severe winds that spawned t-storms and tornadoes. 

Glad to hear you are in one piece but one thing that gives me peace of mind about the KK is that an F5 tornado could knock down my house but the 1600 pound behemoth 42SBB would likely survive and I could feed people right after disaster strikes.  Anyway- if the tornado managed to carry away the KK, Rand Paul would be pissed about the pork spinnin'.

 

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19 hours ago, johnnymnemonic said:

Glad to hear you are in one piece but one thing that gives me peace of mind about the KK is that an F5 tornado could knock down my house but the 1600 pound behemoth 42SBB would likely survive and I could feed people right after disaster strikes.

They have now declared Wednesday's storm to be a Derecho.

Mine survived a direct hit during the derecho of Aug 2010. Top half of a very tall tree fell next to my deck and the metal framed hop trellis collapsed on it, too.

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This is the "after" pic, when I cleared everything off of it and took the cover off to inspect it. Not a scratch.

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Last minute decision to do a pork butt after I realised I had a cabbage in the fridge…so lit the KK and cycled to the butcher.

 Cranked it hot and fast 385-400; wrapped at 170; off at 203 for a 1hr rest. 6.5hrs all up, peach wood chunks, home made rub. Served with coleslaw, home made pickles and a vinegary sauce… heaven.

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For years with my BGE I have been cooking pork butts to send up to my brothers-in-law who live in NYC where they say the BBQ choices are few and far between and when found are expensive, etc.  Plus of course they live in situations where they can't cook their own.  With my large BGE I could do 2 pork butts at once and I would do 2 or 3 cooks before christmas each year in order to send them off with a mess of good BBQ vaccum sealed and frozen to keep for weeks/months.  This would take quite some time because of having to do those 2 or 3 cooks.

One reason why I switched to the KK 42SBB is because it can fit so much food on the main grate.  I cooked 5 pork butts at once for the christmas haul.  Much more efficient to do it all at once and the product was amazing.

  • Jansal Valley coffee and chili pepper rub
  • Coffeechar (that came with my KK)
  • Coffee smoking wood mini-splits (that came with my KK)
  • First attempt with my new Thermoworks Billows (thanks to @BigO for the suggestions on how to set that up optimally with the $2.99 addition of the damper).  I have never used ANY controller before but this thing really rocked.  Kept my 42SBB within 2 degrees of 225 for 16 hours.

I trusted the KK and the billows.  From when I put the pork butts in to when the meat probe registered 195, I didn't open the KK.

The results were fantastic.  The pork just melted.  I couldn't believe it.  My first words included some elated profanity.  I had to use gloved hands to lift these off the grates.  They were just deconstructing.  The fifth picture in this post is what they looked like after taking them off.  I didn't try to break them up like that - that's what happened to them when lifting them off the grates.

Truly the KK is amazing, and the 42SBB was the ideal size for me.  5-6 pork butts on the main grates is perfect for these big cooks I do to send pork up north for my family (and doing one awesome cook instead of several saves me time) - one big bagging and vac-sealing operation, and done.

I am looking forward to bringing some fresh pork for a church BBQ sometime.  I'm also looking forward to doing tacos al pastor for a big neighborhood party and have 4 or 5 vertical spits going.  With the 42 you can do anything.  I couldn't be more impressed with this grill.  It performs so well.

I've done probably 100-120 pork butts in my big green egg over the past 12-14 years.  I have gotten a result this good maybe 1% of the time.  And this was my first time with pork butt on the KK.  Actually that's not true it's my 2nd time.  It's my first cook doing "only" pork butt the entire time and leaving the lid closed the entire cook.

That's not to say my BGE results were bad.  I love what I used to do.  But what happened to day was INCREDIBLE.  And I feel I could easily replicate it tomorrow.  AMAZING.

If you are thinking about buying a KK, have already ordered one, etc - you're in for a treat.  If you are looking at different sizes and you think the 42 is too big - it's not.  It might be a little large for your wallet, but I'm not finding it too big for what I like to do.  For grilling I appreciate the extra room.  For smoking, sure it could be big if you want one pork butt or one brisket.  But there's still no better tool for the job.

One question I have is that with the Thermoworks billows, I heeded the suggestion of opening the top vent of the KK very conservatively.  What I noticed is smoke coming out the edges of all of the rectangular openings -- the bottom vent plate, the port for the gas starter. Not sure what the other side is for.  But anyway I did notice some air leakage there - it's not a big deal at all. In fact I thought to myself that the positive pressure would make some really amazing results - smoke ring, deep smoke flavor, etc.   And I wasn't wrong.  This cook went perfectly, but I was just wondering - if I wanted to be a perfectionist and seal the edges of all the rectangular metal plates on the bottom of my grill, would I use flue tape or is there some other more elegant method to seal around these rectangle steel plate openings?  What do other people do (if anything?) - or - just leave well enough alone?

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Edited by johnnymnemonic
accuracy.
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I've never noticed smoke leaking from the gas burner cover plate on my 23", but when I've had it leak from around the vent plate, reseating it by sliding it out a little and pushing it back end has stopped the leak. I'm not sure but I think I've only had this happen after I'd removed the vent plate to clean out ash, so I assume I either didn't get it pushed ask the way back in, had it a little askew, or had a bit of ash keeping the plate from being fully seated.

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On other pits and smokers I've had, I've always used Peratex Ultra Copper. But I've never used it on my KK.  You saw a steady stream of smoke coming out of the rectangular openings?  You might see some when you close the lid, but I don't know why you'd see it durning the cook.  I'd wait for some of the experts to chime in on this subject. If I had to guess, it'll be suggested to leave it as it is.

 If you do go this route...Peratex...you apply it to one clean surface, let it sit a few minutes, put some clear wrap on top of it...don't press it in, then lightly push the other surface to it. Let it sit overnight. Remove the clear wrap and you'll have a great seal.  It's the consistency of toothpaste.  If you change your mind and want to remove it once it's dry, it'll peel right off a smooth surface.  Don't try to remove it while it's wet. I've used this on a barrel pit and an Akorn smoker with great success.  On the barrel pit, I put it on the pit, not the lid, placed the clear wrap, then closed the lid on it.  Even Jambo's leak smoke!

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Edited by Poochie
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4 hours ago, Poochie said:

On other pits and smokers I've had, I've always used Peratex Ultra Copper. But I've never used it on my KK.  You saw a steady stream of smoke coming out of the rectangular openings?  You might see some when you close the lid, but I don't know why you'd see it durning the cook.  I'd wait for some of the experts to chime in on this subject. If I had to guess, it'll be suggested to leave it as it is.

 

I had the top vent open only like 1/8 of a turn, maybe 1/6th.  Smoke was coming out the rectangle plates (all 3 of them) but only when the thermoworks billows fan was running. IMO, The fan was creating more positive pressure than normally is possible. The leaks were small but noticeable.  It has to be small becuase my fire successfully snuffs when I close everything down.  I don't think it's a big deal. But if I change my mind and want to geek out, I'll try some permatex, especially on places I never plan to open up. Thanks, @Poochie!

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2 hours ago, johnnymnemonic said:

I had the top vent open only like 1/8 of a turn, maybe 1/6th.  Smoke was coming out the rectangle plates (all 3 of them) but only when the thermoworks billows fan was running. IMO, The fan was creating more positive pressure than normally is possible. The leaks were small but noticeable.  It has to be small becuase my fire successfully snuffs when I close everything down.  I don't think it's a big deal. But if I change my mind and want to geek out, I'll try some permatex, especially on places I never plan to open up. Thanks, @Poochie!

Happens all the time with mine when I use the Guru. You correctly deduced what's going on. The fan is pushing more air in than can escape the top vent, so it needs to find a place to go. Not going to affect your cook or temperature control at all. The natural instinct is to open the top vent more to relieve the pressure, but you risk losing control of the temperature by allowing too much airflow when the fan isn't running, unless you really shut the exhaust damper on the fan almost closed. 

If you never plan to use the gas insert (I'm surprised that your KK came with one, as Dennis has pretty much stopped putting them on the newer grills, unless the owner requests one?), Dennis makes a replacement vent door that has threaded rods with wing nuts to secure the gas door closed. I got one for my 23" KK a while ago. I put LocTite on the threads to make sure that it doesn't loosen up. Has worked like a charm. 

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Chicken thighs last night. Icelandic rub, direct, main grate, 350F with leftover wood chunks from the pork butt cook. They produced a LOT of smoke, as you can see in this picture.

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Plated with melting potatoes with the Shallot Crack Sauce! Got some nice crispy skin on the chicken!

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