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edited November -1
We are new users and looking for some general advice on lighting and general temp control. Also any other helpful hints for us first timers.
Big Cat,[p]I guess that makes me Little Cat...at least I hope so. ;-}[p]Welcome to the Forum! You'll get the most helpful answers if you ask specific questions, but here's an attempt at a general response (with apologies if this is old news to you):[p]Use lump charcoal not briquets.[p]Make sure that the vent in the firebox is directly aligned with the lower vent on the Egg.[p]Fill the firebox to just above the airholes, regardless of what or how long you plan to cook; a full load actually conserves fuel better than a small load.[p]There are many ways to light the fire. Some here favor electric starters. I use two Weber firestarters, placed on top of the coals, each about 1/4 of the way in from the edge.[p]There are even more philosophies of temp control. I get the best results if I start narrowing the lower vent when the dome temp is 100 degrees or so below my target. It's much easier to make a small fire bigger than the reverse, since the Egg retains heat so well. (Putting the meat on a low fire also yields greater smoke penetration.)[p]Unless I'm cooking below 250 degrees dome, I control the fire through the lower vent alone, with no damper on the top. Others prefer to control primarily from the top vent. Whichever you choose, experience will help you master temp control very quickly.[p]Keep in mind that dome temp can be considerably higher than grill-level temp. I push a Polder probe through a wine cork (to keep it off the grill) so I can monitor grill temp. [p]It's helpful to calibrate your dome thermometer regularly; stick the tip in boiliing water & if it doesn't register close to 212, use a small wrench to adjust the nut on the back. [p]Suggested cooking times are best viewed as rough guidelines. Go by the meat's internal temperature instead. If you don't have a Polder-like thermometer, it's worth getting one; it lets you monitor the meat temp without lifting the dome.[p]If you do need to lift the dome, close the lower vent first; otherwise, air will rush in to replace the air escaping through the open dome, & the fire temp will spike up.[p]That's all I can think of for now; others will doubtless cover what I've missed. [p]Have fun![p]Cathy[p]
Big Cat,[p]The best and most timely advice will be found here. Just post a question and check back in 10 min and you will probably have an answer. Check back in 30 min and you'll have 10.[p]Yell if you need help. Check
for some general help and pictures of the BGE in my misuse.[p]Tim
Whoahh! Hell of a post. Great info for a general fire control question. Save that one to paste in the future![p]Everyone who reads that message will learn a great deal. Thanks.[p]NB
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[p]'Fill the firebox to just above the airholes...'[p]Duh. Let's try that again: Fill it to the top of the firebox - i.e., to the point where the firebox meets the fire ring.[p]
And at what temp. does the cork begin to burn??
RLA,[p]Polder probes shouldn't be used at temps above 390, so I do this only when I'm cooking at dome 350 tops. The cork hasn't burned yet. [p]I used to use a small potato but a cork takes up less room. And I'm more likely to have a wine cork around than a tater.[p]Cathy
Big Cat,[p]A hearty welcome to the forum and family. Cat (little Cat?) has admirably covered your general questions. I agree with her and suggest that several, more specific, questions will provide you with much more information. From the BGE homepage, you will find a link to frequently asked questions (FAQ). These may be helpful.[p]Experience is the best teacher and we will be here to help shorten the learning curve. Use your Egg. It is an excellent and very forgiving cooker, and will provide surprisingly good food even if you mess up the cook a bit.[p]There is an impressive wealth of very diverse cooking and Egging experience represented on this forum and asking several more specific questions will yield more information. [p]I look forward to reading about your first cook,
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