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Lighting question

AuburneggerAuburnegger Posts: 127
edited 7:02PM in EggHead Forum
So when I am wanting to cook something at 225-250 for a low and slow cook, do I let the charcoal light with the dome open for ten minutes? Do I light it, getting it burning shut the dome and watch for the temp to get close before I start to fine tune? Thanks in advance.


  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,773
    Shut the dome. It creates the needed draft.

    Yes you start shutting down the bottom vent as your temp approaches your desired temp.
  • If your looking at the DVD that came with the egg, you need to throw it away.
    Depending on how you light your egg, 10 minutes may not be enough.
    When you put the plate setter in for a low and slow/add wood chucks/ and cold meat the temp is going to drop. I like to start at 250-275 add everything and then start adjusting.

  • I’m in camp with Carwash Mike.
    I get the Egg “cooking”, dome open, draft open until I see a good take on the fire. Then I close the dome and still wait for a good temp, then add the plate setter and then adjust the temp.
    Ten minutes…No way! Sure, I can get the temp. up in that timeframe, but I don’t have ANYTHING heated, so my rule of thumb is about thirty minutes to get everything good and warm. Just my 2 cents.
    Even after the temp. is up and stabilized (and all the “stuff” is in and warmed), once the meat (or what ever) is added the temp. will drop like a rock; at least it does for me! But, mostly I just let it come back up with out making too drastic adjustments.
    Sometimes my wife thinks it is too slow a go…..But I’ve always thought that “slow” is good!
    Maybe that’s part of the overall problem I’m living… :(
  • BrocBroc Posts: 1,398
    Agreed -- Let the ceramics [including the plate setter] get stabilized at your desired temp... Check by feeling the outside of the dome... let it get warm...

    Then put your food in, ignore the drop in temp, and your Egg should stabilize at your desired temp as the food begins to cook.
  • I'm not trying to hijack your thread, Auburnegger, but I thought of this earlier today and I think it's relative to your question:

    Has anyone 'pre-warmed' their plate setter in the oven to alleviate some of the drop off in temp? Would this be beneficial to do?
  • BrocBroc Posts: 1,398
    I now start the charcoal with my weed burner... I know it's burning! Don't have to wait...

    I put the plate-setter in immediately afterward, and let all the ceramic come to temp simultaneously.

    ~ B
  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    I don't think pre-heating is necessary. I did worry our first winter when it was about 0 out and i was putting the icy plate setter in the egg that was going. that the whole thing would just explode on me or something! but it only takes a few minute to come back up to temp, so I don't think it would be worth the extra steps or messing with the oven :)
  • jeffinsgfjeffinsgf Posts: 1,259
    I learned a neat trick here on the forum a few weeks ago from Nature Boy. Begin with about a half gallon of lump in the bottom of the fire box. Light it and get it going good and steady. Add any wood chunks you want to use and the balance of the charcoal you need on top of the small blazing inferno. As the lump on top starts getting involved, start dialing in your desired temperature.

    I've been using this method for a few weeks now, and have had the best, most consistent, easiest to control fires I've ever had.
  • Thanks for all the responses.
  • I did that my first winter too. I also dabbled with keeping my PS and pizza stone in the house so I wouldn't be putting it cold into the fire.
    Now I leave them outdoors and just put the platesetter in when I want to. (I live in New England)

    Now I start the fire and leave the dome open until the starters are all burned up completely. Sometimes I let it go longer. I prep food while this is going on.

    Then I put the platesetter on and close the dome. When the temp gets within 50 deg of the target, I damper the vents down to where I expect they should be.

    I always figure on 1/2 hour from the time I light it until the time I put the food on- platesetter or not, high or low heat, I still give it a good 20 - 30 min to allow it to get to temp and burn clean.
  • I've thought of the plate setter and later the other contents as the opertunity to cool the temperature a bit since it takes some heat in the fire to get the lump started. As we all know ... it is always easier/faster to raise the temp than to lower it with our eggs.
  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,773
    Everything should be brought up to temp and stabilized before the food is put in. When the meat is put in their will be a marked drop in the eggs temperature because of the cold mass of meat.

    Having to over come drop due to the cold meat and the ceramic mass of the plate setter, and/or pizza stone or drip pan could cause the egg to take longer to come back to temp. This in turn could cause you to adjust the vents. Once you adjust those vents you will be chasing the temps all during the cook.

    Light the egg, put everything in it that is not being cooking. let it stabilize and then put in the food.

    For egrets information: Roasting pans, loaf pans and racks are excluded from the pre-heat :whistle:

    And if mainegg wants to disagree with me that cool. You know she is just a happy hooker.. :woohoo:
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