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Newbie smoke question

I have been reading a lot about overnight cooks of brisket or butts on this forum and want to try a brisket this weekend, but can't figure out how you can light the charcoal that is mixed with wood chunks and have the temperature stablize at whatever is required without wasting the wood chunks.
Is there a special way to place the wood chunks to ensure by the time you get the meat on grill it gets the right amount of smoke?
Thanks for any direction on this.
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Comments

  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 6,100
    edited July 2013
    Just overload a bit with the wood-as long as you spread the chunks throughout the lump load then you will have smoke for quite a while.  For low&slow you only have a small amount of lump buring at any one time.  As the fire travels around the lump it will encouner the wood and smoke away.  You will likely burn some smoke wood upon start-up but not too much.  And right amount is in the taste of the consumer-although a brisket can take a lot of smoke-and if you are not using oak smoke wood don't tell anyone :)
    Louisville
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  • Thanks lousubcap, I will try that this weekend.
    I will be using Oak - I have read the dire threats directed to those who strayed of the Oaken path! :D
    Besides for my first try at brisket, don't want to experiement, keeping it simple.
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  • dougbackerdougbacker Posts: 277
    Light ur lump and get it to temp and then throw ur chunks on top. Thats how I do it anyway. Works great

    --------------------------------------------------------
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  • Light ur lump and get it to temp and then throw ur chunks on top. Thats how I do it anyway. Works great

    That's what I do when I use chips - I thought chunks needed to be embedded in the coals to light properly.
    Will try just placing on top.
    Thanks!
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  • scottc454scottc454 Posts: 73
    My method is to bury chunks in the lump toward the center then put a pile of just lump on the top center and light there.  Then when it is up to temp throw another chunk or two on the top then start the cook.  

    The goal is to start the burn area where there is no wood. I find that it gets to temp quicker this way. It doesn't work perfectly, though.

    As always, don't put food on if heavy white/gray smoke is gushing out.
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  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 6,626
    Mix the chips/chunks throughout the lump, never really noticed a difference if it was in the middle or the sides or a combination of. The place not to have any smoke wood is where you light. It will flare during the lighting process (in my experience anyway). 
    I use an electric starter, light at the front, on the top. Once started, leave the vents open, dome closed until dome thermo is around 200º. Open drop in your set-up and dial the vents to about 1/2 open. Let it stabilize, but not overshoot the target temp. The VOC's will clear and the sweet smell of Oak will fill the pit. Good luck
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
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  • Thanks for the direction guys!
    Will post pictures on final product on the weekend.
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  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,529
    So for low and slow cook at 250 or so is it recommended to only light the lump in one place or can I still light at 12,4 and eight ????

    Sorry for butt-n into your thread Trini-in-ottawa!!!
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol cock? 



    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
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  • phoenix007phoenix007 Posts: 49
    Btw, make sure you wait for blue smoke before putting the meat on.
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  • So for low and slow cook at 250 or so is it recommended to only light the lump in one place or can I still light at 12,4 and eight ????


    Sorry for butt-n into your thread Trini-in-ottawa!!!
    Np - this is an excellent forum for learning all the time :)
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  • Btw, make sure you wait for blue smoke before putting the meat on.

    Will do, thanks! Can't wait for the weekend!
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  • phoenix007phoenix007 Posts: 49
    Cool, good luck. Let us know how everything turns out. Also just FYI I am happy with this site for wood - www.fruitawoodchunks.com
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  • Cool, good luck. Let us know how everything turns out. Also just FYI I am happy with this site for wood - www.fruitawoodchunks.com

    I am up in Canada - Ottawa Ontario - will have to source locally. Thanks for suggestion though. Hopefully I can find some Oak for Saturday.
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