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Introduce myself

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    Introduce myself


    My name is Jeff and I just joined the Pitmaster Club. I love most forms of cooking and given that I live in Michigan I am big on soups and stews this time of year. Having said that, I am happiest when I am cooking outdoors and this is why I discovered this site. Whilst I am talented when it comes to BBQ (in the broad sense that 'Meathead' defines the term) I also recognize how much I don't know. This summer, fall and winter I have sought to elevate my BBQ skills, particularly when it came to smoking "low and slow". I had a lot of success. I also had some disappointments, but never outright failure.

    I want to elevate my game and this is one of the reasons why I joined the Pitmaster Club. I would also love to offer advice to a more novice griller/BBQ/Smoker but I don't think I've achieved the level of success necessary to impart advice.

    This is a really cool website.

    Welcome, Jeff.


      Welcome aboard Jeff. This is definitely the place to up your game and I'd bet you already have advice on some things that would be helpful. Different perspectives are great.


        Welcome Jeff! We're glad you're here.


          Here is my stable: Smokey Joe 14.5" charcoal grill. Bradley 4 shelf electric smoker. Wever Spirit 3-burner propane grill. Weber Smokey Mountain 14.5" "tailgate smoker". Weber Performer with Rotisserie ring, rib rack stand, Weber Gourmet BBQ system with griddle and wok and Smokenator with Hover grill. 2 Weber chimneys and a wide array of charcoal, lump charcoal, bisquettes (for the Bradley), smoking chips and chunks, portable propane tanks to use as starters for the Performer

          I love all of my devices. But up until this year most of my smoking has been done on the Bradley electric. It turned out really good. This past year I moved away from the electric and had my share of success but also had my share of disappointments.


            Hey JJ, Nice line up ya got there. Welcome.


              Welcome Jeff. Don't think you have to reach a certain level to offer advice or tips. We all learn from others experiences. Thanks for your support.


                Hi Jeff , welcome to the Pit


                  Welcome to The Pit JeffJ! Michigan is tearing it up! Greetings from one of your fellow statesmen.

                  You have a great lineup of workhorses there it sounds like! We have a great resource of members here, and everyone can learn something from someone else Thank you for being willing to share!

                  What is your favorite to cook? Least favorite or least successful? What do you hope to do to improve on your least successful?

                  Since this is your first post, please check out our homework assignment post for new members, it contains a few how-tos and please-dos.

                  Hope to hear & see more from you!


                    Hello Huskee. Thank you for the welcome. I've already sought and received advice on my new WSM 14.5". My overall cooking repertoire is quite expansive. Indoors I have produced a large volume of soups, stews, casseroles, sauces, pizzas, etc. Unfortunately, I rarely take notes and create a recipe. That is going to have to change. My hands-down favorite form of cooking is outdoors. I've had tremendous success doing low and slow indirect on my Performer and took it up a notch with the addition of the Smokenator. When it comes to low and slow, I've only had a couple of failures (knock on wood). A few years ago I used WAY too much rub on a couple slabs of baby backs. This past summer I used too much wood for a chuck roast and it ended up tasting like an ash tray. Other than that my low and slow cooks have been overwhelmingly successful.

                    To answer your questions....

                    If I have a favorite it's probably pork butt. I've developed a couple of techniques that have produced superb pulled pork sammies. Technique #1 - I trim off all of the bark, pop it into a food processor and pulse it until I have a nice rough chop. I then pull the rest of the meat and mix the bark back in. This way every bite contains some of that wonderful bark. Technique #2 - I place one of those large cans of whole tomatoes into a bread pan and pop it into the smoker (I use hickory for pork shoulder) for about 3 hours. I will then puree it up and use it as a smokey tomato base for a KC style sauce. I will usually do 2 pans and will puree and freeze one and will use it later in a pot of chili. After the meat is pulled I lightly dress it with sauce - don't want to drown the meat. I also make my own hot sauce in 6 quart batches. It has BIG flavor with a nice lingering burn but it is far from nuclear hot; Tabasco is hotter. Sandwich construction is as follows: Bottom bun - pulled pork - desired amount of hot sauce - dollop of creamy coleslaw - top bun. Divine! I've gotten raving reviews every time I've made these.

                    As for least successful, I'd have to say baby backs. They always turn out good but they are inconsistent, even one slab to another in the same cook (different thickness surely plays a role). My ribs have ranged from fantastic to merely good. I need to get more consistent and I am hoping a combination of practice, research and tips and advice on this site will help get me there.

                    I have 2 that I would like to experiment with. I've done one leg of lamb in my life. It turned out really good (indirect on the Performer) but my wife doesn't like lamb so my opportunities are limited. I have also never cooked beef short ribs. I am very eager to try them but am also a bit apprehensive and will definitely create a topic on this site seeking tips and advice.

                    Thanks again to you and the Amazingribs crew for creating this amazing site!


                      Welcome aboard Jeff



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