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Wok which way?

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    Wok which way?

    I want to start some Wok cooking on my 22" Weber Kettle and am a bit conflicted about the various options. I'm sure I want a carbon steel Wok but what size? I will be cooking for the the two of us so a smaller Wok seems appropriate to me me unless a bigger one provides more flexibility. Flat bottom or round bottom is a decision I'm vacillating back and forth on. Are there accessories that make Woking (is that a verb?) on a 22" Weber Kettle easier? I would love to hear options on what I should get to make my Wok experience more enjoyable.

    #2
    Lots of folks use the master touch kettle grate with the hole in the middle.

    A round bottom is always easier to cook with than a flat bottom, UNLESS you have to use a flat burner. The round allows things to slide around much easier and not get hung up on the corner.

    a 12" is too small, especially if you want to toss things, we want more sidewall. a 16" can get too heavy to toss in, so 14" is the most common and for good reason.

    I like a single handle so I can easily toss things and, more importantly pick it up off the heat if it's getting too hot.

    Here's a classic wok thread you should peruse through...


    There was a little mention of cooking with a wok on the pod cast. Just thought I’d toss in my 1 & a 1/2 cents into the fray. Cast Iron was mentioned, it is not good for Chinese

    Comment


    • RichardCullip
      RichardCullip commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks for the reference.

    • Attjack
      Attjack commented
      Editing a comment
      Which wok do you have?

    #3
    The work horse & most adaptable is the 14”. The best route is carbon steel. Don’t fall for some sales pitch or gimmickry & don’t feel ya have to spend a lot. You can get a good one at Walmart & they’re cheap, I did or at The Wok Shop. Both of mine have a small handle on the opposing side, you may find this is handy for some cooks. An excellent source for wok cooking is Grace Young. Google her & you will find that she has 3 books, two of them exclusive to wok cooking. Kenji Alt- Lopez is also coming out with Food Lab-esque book (huge to those in Oconomowoc) in March. He uses it like I do, multiple times every week. Wait til ya start cookin breakfasts in it, it is an amazing tool.
    PS. Flat bottom is more than adequate, especially for in house, stove top cookin. I use mine also in my outdoor wok oven, it fits just fine. Click image for larger version

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    Last edited by FireMan; September 9, 2021, 12:22 PM.

    Comment


    • CandySueQ
      CandySueQ commented
      Editing a comment
      That's a super hot Wok heating set up! What's it called and where is it available? Thanks.

    #4
    CandySueQ ,This my second one, a buddie broke my first. I got it at the WokShop.com. It’s a small business owned by a woman named Tane Shan, a real sweetheart, in San Francisco. It is a clay wok oven/pot. It will burn charcoal or wood, obviously not the big splits as in Q, but it gets the job done.

    Comment


    #5
    We have a wok, which my wife acquired many years ago, and I am about the only person that uses it. Pretty sure its teflon coated though, and we only use it on the stove top. I may have to get a carbon steel one soon, as that would be able to take the extra heat of outdoor cooking. The main dilemma is whether to get a flat bottom one or round bottom one.... . I would be using it on a stove top or the grill, so flat will probably win out. That way I can use it on the kettle grate without worrying with a wok ring.

    I know with the inside wok, having a flat bottom gives me a nice sear zone, and I can push stuff up around the side curve during the cook. So you start with the onions and garlic, get it looking good, slice it up the side to clear the middle out, put in the stir fry veggies, get them done and pushed up the sides, then put the protein in the middle. Then add the rice, mix it all up, and I then open up a spot in the bottom and drop two eggs in, get them cooked, and mixed it all again. I think all that would be harder with a round bottom one?
    Last edited by jfmorris; September 9, 2021, 02:55 PM.

    Comment


    • FireMan
      FireMan commented
      Editing a comment
      Flat, then you can use it either or. You do not lose any effectiveness in a flat vs round.

    #6
    Here's the one I bought last November. I absolutely love it. It's 14" carbon steel https://smile.amazon.com/dp/B07BB2C1...ing=UTF8&psc=1

    Comment


    • jfmorris
      jfmorris commented
      Editing a comment
      Do you use it on a wok ring for the stove or grill?

    • Dewesq55
      Dewesq55 commented
      Editing a comment
      jfmorris - I use it on the wok ring that came with my fancy indoor gas range.

    • FireMan
      FireMan commented
      Editing a comment
      That is a round bottomed, if you have an electric range you” need the flat.
      Don’t over think this. Woks have been in use many, many moons, before computers even. 🕶

    #7
    Wok which way, you asked? The way to wok a dog.
    Guess I am no help. Sorry, I'm a pellet head.

    Comment


      #8
      I use woks a great deal both at home and at work. If its just you two, or maybe 3-4 of you, at 14 inch is fine. If you want the option of cooking inside, get a flat bottom wok. Carbon steel is the best, as if you mess it up, just burn it out and wipe with a an oily rag. When I'm truly power mad, or I have more than 4 for dinner, I use an 18 inch pao wok on my 80,000 BTU burner. Your Weber kettle would do nicely for stir-frying. For deep frying? Not so much. This is where having an option to cook inside is helpful. If I was making tempura, let's say, I would want better temp control than would be possible with any open fire.

      I hope this is helpful

      Comment


        #9
        You've gotten a fairly repetitive consensus for carbon steel, round bottom format which I agree with. For the 22" you want to use I'd suggest both the GBS grate with the hole in the center as noted above plus a Vortex to concentrate the heat. If you go to the thread Polarbear777 linked above in post #51 you'll see my use of those two pieces on a non kettle cooker with the addition of a variable height rig (not necessary, just a fun experiment), and in the next post, #52, another member shows the grate and Vortex in his kettle.

        Comment


          #10
          I use my Wok indoors on the gas burner and outdoors on a souped up gas burner. 14" Carbon steel round for my gas burners no ring. You need flat bottomed for electric cook-tops.

          I bought a carbon steel that was recommended online. It is a thicker steel and heavier than my old cheap one. It makes it hard to toss the food. Not sure if thicker is better.

          Comment


            #11
            Inspired by FireMan I gathered my CS round bottom Wok (14"), my small Vortex, my Weber Jumbo Joe, a table to put it all on, lit the chimney and cut up veggies. This was super fun! And tasty!

            I believe the medium Vortex would be perfect in a 22" Kettle, RichardCullip.

            Comment


            • FireMan
              FireMan commented
              Editing a comment
              Fun & tasty is what it’s all about!

            #12
            FireMan Thank you for the book recommendations from Grace Young which I think were in the other thread on wok use but also mentioned above. For those who are interested, the kindle version of Grace Young’s book Stir Frying to the Sky’s Edge is currently on sale for $1.99.

            Comment


            • FireMan
              FireMan commented
              Editing a comment
              Wow! Thank you for lettin me know. I have the book & have bought copies of that & Breath of Wok for a few of my fam & friends. I pounced on this kindle version!

            #13
            Click image for larger version

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ID:	1092481 I bought this from Amazon last year and it works great! Seasoned it up, placed a Vortex underneath, removed the middle of the grate, and it was ready to go! Used on my Weber Summit above the sear burner as well. Just $60

            Comment


              #14
              When I purchased this wok set from the Wok Shop in January, I felt that it fulfilled all the requirements I had in mind, to wit: flat bottom; 14 gauge carbon steel, welded handles (wooden main handle and assist handle) so the entire inside of the wok is smooth without rivets, 14 inch; comes in a package deal with lots of other goodies.

              I use the wok all the time. My most unexpected discovery? It's an ideal deep fryer, used in conjunction with my Somerset IV outdoor gas range with its 30,000 BTU burners. I use a diffuser under the wok and honest to goodness, stuff fries up so efficiently in it with minimal drop in the temperature of the fat (immediately after adding the food) and amazingly quick heat recovery time.

              I enjoy the stir fries and other meals that I make in it, but the deep fryer aspect of that wok has won my Southern deep-fried heart.

              Kathryn

              Comment


              • Strat50
                Strat50 commented
                Editing a comment
                Woks have been my go to deep fryers for many years. Overall, they are way safer, and do a great job with a minimum off fuss.They also use less oil for many types of frying too. Very easy to dial in your temps, as they are so responsive to heat input.

              • FireMan
                FireMan commented
                Editing a comment
                Cool, cool, very cool! You do know what I'm goin to say next…..
                How ‘bout some pics? 🕶

              #15
              Thanks for all the great suggestions. I’m now waiting anxiously for the arrival of the pieces I’ve ordered. I’ve got a 14” round bottom carbon steel wok, wok ring, medium Vortex and the Weber 8835 hinged BBQ grate on the way. Looking forward to my first stir fry on the wok. This will add lots of flexibility to my 22” Weber kettle

              Comment

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