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Adding charcoal during all-day cook

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    Adding charcoal during all-day cook

    When you add charcoal to your PBC during a long cook, how exactly do you do it? Today, I pulled all the meat out, then filled my chimney half full (about 40 briquets) and dumped it on the dwindling coals. I let that go uncovered for 10 minutes, and then covered it with no rebars for another 10. I guess I really have three questions: When you add charcoal to a dwindling fire, 1) how much charcoal do you add, 2) what do you use to add it, and 3) how long do you let it burn before putting meat over it?


    Depends how much longer I got. Half chimney is plenty. I rarely need that much. I hang meat immediately. Dump it from the chimney itself. Will eventually get a compact chimney for easier dumpage.


    • Crunchy
      Crunchy commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks. The little chimney is on my Xmas list. I've gotten reasonably good at dumping from the full size one, but awkward dumpage is definitely an issue.

    • Jerod Broussard
      Jerod Broussard commented
      Editing a comment
      I cut a lip in mine but it is still a pain. I had a snaffee on a cook Thursday night and was frantically lighting some charcoal in a chimney at 0215 to get my barrel up to 400 to finish off a butt by 0430.

    Yeah, I dump directly from the chimney itself as well, but I remove the meat first, just like you do, Crunchy . It only took one time to see the meat covered with ash to remind me to get the meat out, then add the hot coals, wait a bit for the ash to settle, then rehang the meat and get back in the game.



      I get the chimney going then I use these babies. I put on my Pit Mit and add two coals at a time, with the coal basket still in the PBC. Then I can pick where I want those coals to go without even removing the meat. And if its not too loaded down with meat, Its easy peasy. This is one of Meathead's very underrated tools. Its perfect for the PBC. I can even lower the coal basket into the barrel with them. (as long as the basket isn't packed to the gills.) I always use them for adding coals to any of my cookers. With the looooong handle it makes it easy not to burn yourself. Plus the jaws open wide enough to easily fit two coals in at a time.
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      • smarkley
        smarkley commented
        Editing a comment
        Ya... I have some too... very handy for moving briquettes around when cooking with a Dutch Oven too

      • Spinaker
        Spinaker commented
        Editing a comment
        Thats a Good call smarkley

      Wow Spinaker , that sounds like a great gizmo. I might have to look into getting one.



      • Spinaker
        Spinaker commented
        Editing a comment
        You won't regret it fzxdoc

      When I do, and I usually just toss it in the oven to finish to be honest, I light about 10 coals, they will get hot fast, then I put another 30 or so on top and then dump them all together, works well with the small chimney. Gotta remove the meat though. Added coals on my first WSM cook today, just open the hatch and toss them in, pretty awesome.


        When I tried to do this, I added the unlit coals to the cooker and then it took a long time for the white smoke to burn off. So long, my food got cold. I'm talking a half hour here before the white smoke finally went away. All of the coals have to catch, if there are some on the side that haven't caught yet they're going to put out white smoke when they finally ignite.

        I've tried pre-lighting coals in my chimney starter and just quit doing it because time after time the fire goes out and doesn't light the charcoal. Happens again and again, I got tired of it and now I use those pressed-sawdust flammable starters, they work like a charm. Nothing discourages guests like seeing the supposed BBQ master unable to get a fire lit.


          I pull the meat, pull the rebar, and use a rake to pull the basket to fill outside the PBC.



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