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Barbecue! June 26, 2009

Posted by Peeps in Cooking, Food, Home.

Now, a great many people in this country use the word barbecue incorrectly.  For most people, what they’re doing is firing up the gas grill and putting burgers or hot dogs or chicken on it and cooking them over high direct heat.  That’s grilling, not barbecue.

Barbecue is cooking something over low, indirect heat in the presence of smoke.  It takes hours, but it’s worth it.

A few years back, my in-laws got me a smoker for Christmas.  I started playing with it last summer.  But while the smoker they gave me was fine as a starter, it had problems.  It was very small.  I could only do a little at a time.  It was a pain to keep the fire fed.  The whole water bowl in the middle of the thing was a pain in the butt.  Things have changed a bit.

As Spring started to assert itself, I went on line and did some research and found the perfect smoking rig for me.  And last week, we went out and got one.

Meet my new friend.  This thing will allow me to do just about everything I want in terms of barbecue.  It’s a Char Griller Super Pro.  I got it on sale, even.


It has all the room I’ll ever need for doing, say, large batches of pulled pork. Or more than one rack of ribs at a time.


I decided that I had to have the seperate fire box, just to make my life a little easier.  And because it’s so damn cool.

I got the beast assembled last weekend, and gave it a test run Monday.  I thought that ribs were just the test I needed.

Noonish, I started getting the fire going.  I tend to be something of a purist.  I use charcoal.  And I really prefer natural charcoal.  There’s nothing in it to give the food and off taste.  Once I got some coal nice and hot, they went into the rig and got topped with some hickory chunks.


While the smoker was warming up, I went back in and brought out the ribs.  These were something of an experiment.  A couple years ago, we did a pork roast rubbed with a seasoning mixture for our shop.  We still had a bunch of the rub left, so Toys suggested using it as a rib rub.  Okay, I can work with that.


On the smoker racks with the ribs in the hope they become wonderful.  Now all I had to do was wait.

And check the temperture.  And feed the fire.  And wait.  Lather, rinse, repeat.  I got a lot of household stuff done in between trips out to check on things.  The reason I decided on ribs as a test was because of their relatively quick cooking time.  With ribs only needing four to six hours in the smoker, I could tell how the thing worked without having to commit to an entire day of curiousity.

It worked beautifully!  Maintaining temperature is easy, feeding the fire box is a breeze and even cleaning up the next day is easy.

And as it turns out, we invited the in-laws for Fourth of July.  For pulled pork and such.  Just wait until they see what me and my new smoker can do.

And as an additional little bit of fun, my boss is going to be closing his stores for a week right around the Fourth, too.  Apparently, no one wants to eat ravioli in the middle of summer.  I suppose I can see that.  I’ll be very busy emptying out the freezer and running the smoker for most of that week.  Including the two briskets I just got on sale.  Like is good.

Oh, and the ribs?  They came out pretty well.  But neither Toys nor I was entirely happy with the rub.  But we’ll get there.


We always get there.



1. origamifreak - June 26, 2009

mmm. ribs.

Peeps - June 26, 2009

They weren’t bad. But they weren’t perfect. Yet.

2. Mazco34 - June 26, 2009

When you get the rub “there”, I really would like to give it a try.

Peeps - June 26, 2009

Sure, not a problem. Alton Brown’s will always work, if you’re stuck.

Mazco34 - June 26, 2009

Okay, but I’ll have to tell C that it’s from someone else. She finds Alton Brown kinda “hinky”.

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