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What nifty tricks, tips and gadgets do you have?

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  • Willy
    Charter Member
    • Apr 2015
    • 1942
    • High Desert of the Great Southwest

    What nifty tricks, tips and gadgets do you have?

    I usually drape a few slices of bacon over ("through") the grill when smoking. Makes nice, crisp, very smoky bacon for use in beans, side dishes, and other bacon bit uses. Jazz up them collards, baby!

    I clean my spice grinder (an old $20 Krups bladed coffee bean grinder) by wiping it clean with paper towel, then grinding a tsp or two of salt, which takes away pretty much all of the other spice residue. Use the salt in whatever recipe you are using the ground spices for. Wipe the grinder clean again with a dampened paper towel. ETA: perhaps better would be a bit of rice--less corrosive than salt.

    A rasp style grater is a wonderful and indispensable tool--grates everything from nutmeg, ginger and cinnamon to finely grating cheeses like parm.

    A heat tamer is a really nice thing for very low and slow simmering applications (http://www.amazon.com/Nordic-Ware-Ta.../dp/B00004W4UJ).

    Save old Grolsch beer bottles (with the flip top ceramic stopper) for salad dressings, home made condiments, and such. Much cheaper than store bought equivalent and they come full of beer! Win-Win. ETA: try to find Grolsh that hasn't been exposed to light (still in the back room storage cooler in its cardboard case). Light gives Grolsch, and other beers in green or clear bottles, that skunky taste.

    We spent "the big bucks" and bought Le Creuset enameled cast iron dutch ovens years ago. Fantabulous!

    An electric ice cream maker--the kind with a "freezing/mixing" bowl that is stored in the freezer is an easy, quick way to make ice cream. Ours is a $50 Cuisinart model. Adding a tablespoon of two of alcohol (vodka, liqueurs) during mixing makes ice cream a bit easier to scoop.

    For mis en place, rather than use little bowls that need to be washed, I use el cheapo paper plates.

    There's probably more that I'm not thinking of, but I'm anxious to hear your ideas.

    Last edited by Willy; February 1, 2021, 02:29 PM.
  • Jerod Broussard
    Moderator
    • Jun 2014
    • 10002
    • East Texas
    • Pit Barrel Cooker "Texas Brisket Edition"
      Weber One Touch Premium Copper 22" Kettle (gift)
      Slow 'n Sear for 22" Kettle
      Weber One Touch Premium Black 26" Kettle (gift)
      Slow 'n Sear XL for 26" Kettle (gift)
      Weber Smokey Joe Gold
      Weber Rapid Fire Chimney
      Vortex
      Maverick ET-732 White
      Maverick ET-732 Copper
      2- Auber SYL-1615 fan systems(Awesome!!!!!!!!)
      Thermoworks Thermapen w/ Back light (gift)
      Thermoworks Timestick
      Cambro Model 300MPC110 w/ Winco SS Pans
      B & B and Kingsford Charcoal
      B & B Pellets

    #2
    I say you must drill at least 2 holes in every grill/smoker you have that is worth over $80 but less than $200.

    Comment


    • ecowper
      ecowper commented
      Editing a comment
      heck man, I drilled holes in my Hasty-Bake
  • PaulstheRibList
    Founding Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 1582
    • Lake Charles, LA
    • Started Low-N-Slow BBQ in 2012. Obviously, it's taken hold (in chronological order:
      1.) A pair of Weber Smokey Mountain 22.5's
      2.) #LilTex, a 22" Expensive Offset Smoker (looks like a Yoder Witicha)
      3.) #WhoDat1, a HUGE Gravity Fed Insulated Cabinet Smoker (cooking chamber 3'x2'x6')
      4.) A Full Size Commercial Dryer/converted to Vertical Smoker.
      5.) Jambo Backyard stickburner (my FAVORITE Pit so far)
      6.) GrillMeister, a huge 24"x48" Adjustable, Charcoal Grill from Pitmaker.com
      7.) 22" Weber Kettle with Slow-N-Sear
      8.) Vault insulated reverse-flow cabinet smoker from Pitmaker
      9.) BarbecueFiretruck...under development
      10.) 26 foot BBQ Vending Trailer equipped with HUGE Myron Mixon 72xc smoker is HERE, Oct 2016!
      11.) Opened www.PaulsRibShackBarbecue.com Food Trailer officially in March 2017
      12.) Austin Smoke Works 500 Gallon Propane Tank Offset Smoker, named "Lucille" as travel pit for PaulsRibShack, Oct 2018.
      12.) Opening Brick & Mortar location at 4800 Nelson Rd, Spring 2019. Had a pair of 1,000 Gallon Austin Smoke Works pits, both in RibShackRed for our new place!

      Fabulous Backlit Thermapens, several Maverick Remote Thermometers (don't use any remotes anymore), Thermoworks Smoke, Other Thermoworks toys, Vacuum sealer, lots and lots of equipment...

      I'm loving using BBQ to make friends and build connections.
      I have #theRibList where I keep a list of new and old friends and whenever I'm cooking, I make 1 to 20 extra and share the joy.

    #3
    For you Stickburners, I've found a MUST HAVE, the KindlingCracker.com. Unless you are cooking on a 500+ gallon smoker, then some logs are just too big to put on and keep your temps 275 and below.
    Click image for larger version

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    Comment


    • PaulstheRibList
      PaulstheRibList commented
      Editing a comment
      You'll love it CandySueQ

    • bbqLuv
      bbqLuv commented
      Editing a comment
      Camping too. camp fire does that count as a stick burner?
      PBR pairs well with camp fire.

    • Mr. Bones
      Mr. Bones commented
      Editing a comment
      I have both sizes Kindlin Cracker, an several useful hand sledges.

      bbqLuv Yup campfire=stickburner!
  • scottranda
    Charter Member
    • May 2015
    • 1874
    • Charlotte, NC

    #4
    Torch to light your charcoal. And a BBQ Dragon ($40) to get it really hot. I used to use a balloon animal pump ($8) but I got tired of pumping manually!

    My next trick is to have a newborn in May, so if I'm going to stay up all night anyway, might as well make brisket!

    Comment


    • PaulstheRibList
      PaulstheRibList commented
      Editing a comment
      I didn't bbq when we had babies. Love the cross-pollination of the two!
  • BigBear
    Former Member
    • Sep 2015
    • 657
    • Dallas-Ft. Worth

    #5
    The DigiQDX2 installed on my PBC is the niftiest gadget I have. It does a great job of controlling temperatures during a cook.

    Comment


    • Breadhead
      Breadhead commented
      Editing a comment
      Agreed!

      I have a large BGE and consider the DigiQ Dx2 the absolute most valuable accessory I've ever bought.

      It makes my large BGE a set it and forget it cooker.
  • CandySueQ
    Moderator
    • Jul 2014
    • 1523
    • Pellet Fired Jambo, T1000 Woodmaster, FEC100, MAK 2 star, Yoder 640, Backwoods Pellet Chef, 14" & 22" WSM, 22" Weber Kettle, Stoven, Hot Box Grill, Hasty Bake Portable

    #6
    This is very handy:
    Amazon.com: Norpro Stainless Steel Onion Holder: Cutting Boards: Home & Kitchen

    Comment


    • Medusa
      Medusa commented
      Editing a comment
      Pampered Chef has a similar tool. I have really considered this tool compared to all of the other neato cool and expensive stuff you can spend $$$ on ...

      -- Ed

    • CandySueQ
      CandySueQ commented
      Editing a comment
      I use it to pierce chicken skin mainly. Seems to help with texture.

    • Medusa
      Medusa commented
      Editing a comment
      Great idea for piercing chicken skin! Yep, I can see many, many uses! Skip the fork!

      I need this..., I need this...
      Last edited by Medusa; February 12, 2016, 04:43 PM.
  • Breadhead
    Banned Former Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 0

    #7
    My handy dandy meat hook is a nice accessory...😎

    Comment


    • Medusa
      Medusa commented
      Editing a comment
      Where did you get this?

      Thanks, -- Ed

    • Breadhead
      Breadhead commented
      Editing a comment
      Medusa ...

      Most BBQ stores stock them or you can order 1 online through AR at Amazon.

    • Texas Larry
      Texas Larry commented
      Editing a comment
      I had a lefty version of this specially made for me. Works great on some cooks. Tongs better for others.
  • Breadhead
    Banned Former Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 0

    #8
    Grill Grates are very handy too.

    Comment


    • Medusa
      Medusa commented
      Editing a comment
      I love my GG's. Actually packed them up and took them on a road-trip for Disney Land vacation!

    • bbqLuv
      bbqLuv commented
      Editing a comment
      Grill Grates work on my pellet grill.
  • smokinfatties
    Former Member
    • Oct 2015
    • 521
    • Upland, CA

    #9
    http://www.amazon.com/Bakers-Chefs-D...fing+dish+fuel

    use those to put under my weber charcoal chimney to get coals started instead of newspaper (with all the ash). I usually get 5-10 starts per can depending on how quickly i remember to go back outside and move it once the fire has started! Learned from Harry Soo's class

    Comment


    • bbqLuv
      bbqLuv commented
      Editing a comment
      Sterno. yep takes me back to younger days.
  • Medusa
    Charter Member
    • Sep 2014
    • 665
    • For those who are about to Cook - WE SALUTE YOU!

      Weber Genesis Silver B - 14 years
      GG's
      Weber OTS
      Vortex
      SnS
      Maverick ET-733 dual 6' probes / Thermo-Pop
      ennoLogic eT650D IR ( -58 to 1202F)
      Weber Rapid Fire Chimney
      Kingsford Blue

    #10
    Try this... got mine from Amazon. This is an item where the price keeps going up over the years. Best Gadget for Garlic

    November 30th, 2014, 02:46 PM


    You need this... better than a garlic press ( and alot easier to clean ). Will handle up to 8 cloves. Made in the USA.
    It's called a Garlic Twist, and you can easily find it on Amazon. Price has steadily risen over the last few years. Virtually indestructible ( unless you put in on a turkey and put the turkey in the oven - won't explode, tho ). Have had mine for 2 years.

    Click the link below to see an image.

    --Ed
    [ATTACH=CONFIG]n36014[/ATTACH]

    Comment


    • Dr ROK
      Dr ROK commented
      Editing a comment
      Looks like a neat gadget. Have you tried grating your garlic on a microplane zester? Works like a charm.

    • Medusa
      Medusa commented
      Editing a comment
      Microplane... cool idea!

    • fzxdoc
      fzxdoc commented
      Editing a comment
      Medusa , you don't use the device to peel the garlic too, do you? Or do you? If it does it all at the same time, doesn't the garlic skin get mixed in the mashed garlic? Or do you just put peeled cloves in and twist away? (The ad says it "peels and minces" garlic.)

      Kathryn
      Last edited by fzxdoc; February 13, 2016, 07:46 AM.
  • Medusa
    Charter Member
    • Sep 2014
    • 665
    • For those who are about to Cook - WE SALUTE YOU!

      Weber Genesis Silver B - 14 years
      GG's
      Weber OTS
      Vortex
      SnS
      Maverick ET-733 dual 6' probes / Thermo-Pop
      ennoLogic eT650D IR ( -58 to 1202F)
      Weber Rapid Fire Chimney
      Kingsford Blue

    #11
    Click image for larger version

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ID:	140871 This might be useful. "Hands-free straining operation" - LOL!
    -- Ed

    Thanks for the great responses! Truly a lifesaver when it comes to this recipe and other things that require straining massive amounts of goodies.

    Homemade Beef Enchiladas! Sauce is in the bowl - skip that store-bought stuff!
    Click image for larger version

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    No Couch Tonite!

    Click image for larger version

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    Last edited by Medusa; February 12, 2016, 04:25 PM.

    Comment


    • Dr ROK
      Dr ROK commented
      Editing a comment
      Awesome, I love the fusion of shop tools and cooking!

    • fzxdoc
      fzxdoc commented
      Editing a comment
      Kewl idea, Medusa !
  • DJ DeSpain
    Club Member
    • Aug 2015
    • 195
    • Kennesaw, GA
    • Reese Bobby from "Talladega Nights": "Oh hell, Son, I was high that day. That doesn't make any sense at all, you can be second, third, fourth... hell you can even be fifth." Translation -- you do your best, that's what matters!

      Using a medium Green Egg, and yes, I have a Thermapen!

    #12
    My wife got me pair of these Steven Raichlen gloves this past Christmas from Amazon. These things are definitely a must have for working around a grill or smoker! The picture is from Amazon, but it gives you an idea of how far up the arms they go.

    http://www.amazon.com/Steven-Raichle...q+gloves+steve

    Comment


    • HorseDoctor
      HorseDoctor commented
      Editing a comment
      How nice of Steven Raichlen to endorse welders gloves. LOL! At least they kept the cost competitive with the local farm supply store. VBG!
  • Breadhead
    Banned Former Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 0

    #13
    DJ DeSpain ...

    Gloves are a good idea. I don't always do what I should.☹
    Attached Files

    Comment

    • LA Pork Butt
      Charter Member
      • Dec 2014
      • 5780
      • Grew up in New Orleans, lived in Texas for 20 years, lived in Mandeville, LA for 22 years. I now liv

      #14
      If you cook on a ceramic cooker these folks have some great add ons http://ceramicgrillstore.com/ I like their Woo which raises the grill to the felt line, serves as holder for the plate setter for easy removal when hot reverse sear.

      Comment


      • Argoboy
        Argoboy commented
        Editing a comment
        Good web site too bad I am in a different country.
    • (Oneshotxn)
      Former Member
      • Jun 2015
      • 10
      • Detroit Michigan

      #15
      When I first got my Akorn I knew from the first dry run I had a lot of air leaks. I reasoned that if air can come through the gaps, then light would leak out just as well. I placed a 500 Watt Halogen Work light in the center of the Akorn with the light pointed up. I turned on the light and closed the lid. I closed the garage door and was 'rewarded' with a light show. Worked out pretty good overall.

      Comment


      • Medusa
        Medusa commented
        Editing a comment
        Smarht!

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