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use of chimney
I am going to cook on my egg tonight for the first time; I am use to starting charcoal with a chimney in my Webber, do I need to use a chimney in the egg?
Mike in Abita
Sure you can do it that way.
You can use a starter cube or any other means to light your egg...by design the egg acts like a chimney on it's own...a chimney starter is not needed with the egg..leave the top vent off and the bottom vent wide open until you get within 50 degrees of your desired temp then put the top on and begin closing the top and bottom to control your temp...don't be fooled by the burning starter cube..your temps will spike to around 350 and once the cube has burned out and the lump starts burning it will drop to around 150 and gradually begin to rise...you should be at an honest 300 degrees in around 20 minutes..
be careful if you use the chimney.
I recently tried it and burned my gasket when pouring the charcoal into the egg. A few sparks shot out and the gasket was on fire before i could set the chimney down.
I will get a new gasket soon.
I gave my chimney away when I got my Egg, you won't need it. -RP
As others have said, the Egg basically is a chimney. I use a trick learned here: fold a paper towel into quarters, pour a little cooking oil (not a lot) on it, twist into a little roll, light it on your charcoal, tent a few pieces of lump around it, and close the top (I use two for every fire). Works great.
I still use my chimney faithfully, when I am especially on top of my game, I will fill it (either with new lump or partially used), get the fire chamber ready, set the chimney up on the grate inside the egg w/a starter cube under it & the lighter next to it & just leave it all there till my next cook. That way, I can walk on by on my way into the house from work, pop open the lid, fire it up, shut the lid & let it roll. By the time I am ready to start cook'n, the chimney is humm'n & ready to toss into the pit :P
I light mine in 3 spots for 30 seconds each with a mapp gas torch, a full tank last years
The chimney works well and when you dump in the egg everything is mostly ready to go.
However, I found that in the same amount of time it took the chimney to be ready to dump, starting the lump inside the egg took about the same amount of time. I wasn't having to deal with the hot chimney or storing it anywhere.
There are a lot of easy ways to light the egg.
My first cook was done with a batch of BGE lump fired up in the weber chimney. It works well, but like jonboy, I touched the very hot chimney on the gasket and left a burn on the gasket. Unlike skin, it doesn't repair/recover, but it doesn't seem to matter when cooking. As you see with the other postings there are many way to start the fire. I've used the paper towel method most and am trying the MAPP torch to compare. The paper towel is very effective, MAPP works well too, but lots of sparks. Both methods let you arrange the lump the way you want. The chimney method doesn't. But, I really think the weber chimney gets a hot fire quickly. Right now, for me, paper towel and MAPP are tied for first place.
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