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Pizza too smokey. WTF?

travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
edited January 2012 in EggHead Forum
I cooked a pizza on my xl, it was good but a little too smokey. I cleaned out all the old lump, took a shop vac to the ashes, used all fresh RO and let it burn for about 30 min prior to putting the pie on. Cook time was about 15 min at 550 dome temp. 

I like smokey flavor, A LOT. This pizza was just too much. It even got a little dark in color. Does anyone have any advice? Im going to try another one on Sunday. Please help.
Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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Comments

  • I would venture to say you didn't burn the new lump long enough. Try the used lump tomorrow night and see if that's better.
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  • Have any smoke chips left in the old lump that didnt get burnt from last cook

     

    LET'S EAT
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  • FxLynchFxLynch Posts: 433
    I'd say if you got it up to 550 degrees and let it burn for 30 minutes you probably were OK as far as letting the lump burn.  I wonder if you were controlling the temp mainly by using the daisy wheel or the bottom vent?  If you use the daisy wheel then there is a chance that when shutting the fire down to keep it from going over your target temp you kept a lot of the smoke in as opposed to using the bottom vent to restrict flow.

    Thats all I can come up with right now, unless your RO was made from a different wood than the stuff I get here.

    Frank
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  • JasperJasper Posts: 378
    Was smoke coming out of the top? After 30 min it should be burning clean.
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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    Nope, no leftover wood. It was all fresh lump.

    Daisy wheel was open, for the most part.

    No smoke to speak of, it was a clear haze coming out of the top.
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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  • fruitguyfruitguy Posts: 121
    Just finished pizza and posted the same question.
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  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    "Too much smoke" as in "the smoke tasted good, but there was too much of it"

    Or "the smoke tasted bad"?

    If you didnt add wood, it sounds like you either didnt let it burn clean and/or maybe you used a dense lump (slow to burn off) or something with a stronger flavor (like mesquite).
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
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  • I wonder too what's up.  When I make pizza, I have to ADD smoking chips to get any smoke flavor on the pie.
    The Naked Whiz
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  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    Zackly. The fire is roaring, so the draft is jetting. And that blows off the VOCs quickly

    I'm betting the pie went on too soon. A full load of fresh dense lump needs some time to burn truly clean
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    Stike, it was too much of a good thing. The taste was better than any delivery pizza but had too much smoke flavor. It was a little over powering.

    There were a lot of firsts on that cook so there are lots of variables. New pizza sauce, papa murphys crust, and boars head pepperoni were all brand new to me. The sauce has me a little suspect to be honest. I will report back when I do another for comparison. 
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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  • Hate for this to be my first post with all my successes over the last 3 weeks, but... I just did my first pizza and have to say mine was a bit smoky too.  Also, too much of a good thing.  I put in a fresh load of BGE lump, fired it up, cooked a few burgers and then ramped up for my pizza.  So it had about 25 min at 400 or so.  I then ramped up to 650 with plate setter and stone in place on the BGE feet.  Gave it about 15 min in there to come to temp and put my pie on.  Daisy wheel completely off and bottom vent almost full open.  I had to open the lid a few times trying to get the parchment paper out so temp never went over 625 or so.  Super peel being ordered tonight to overcome this issue.

    In terms of "burning off" a new load of lump, how long do you typically let it burn and at what temp to avoid problems such as these?  And why is this not an issue on low and slow cooks?  (sorry, not trying to hijack!)
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  • SandBillySandBilly Posts: 224
    I've learned the faster I can cook a pizza the better I like it, also have learned some toppings seem to absorb the smoke more than others. The daughter wanted pineapple on hers last week and is seemed to absorb WAY too much smoke, but I also had a hard time getting the temp up ( didnt clean enough ash)and it stayed on a bit too long.
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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    I remade some pizza last night. They turned out perfect. Here is a step by step.

    Totally clean out egg with shop vac.
    FULL load of RO lump
    Light lump and burn till no black is remaining (about 35min. I used the blower on shop vac to cheat)
    Put plate setter and pizza stone w/ spacer and let heat for 10 min
    650 degrees with no fly wheel and vent full open.
    Took about 15 min.

    The smoke flavor was ever so slight and very pleasant. I think making sure the lump was all on fire and cooking at a higher temp was the key. 
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,914
    Where did you use the shop vac? I have one by the eggs and often use it above the lump to get the fire burning clean. I also use it to get to ultra high temps through the lower vent

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    I shot it through the bottom vent at first and that worked but, blowing from the top worked much better. It made a bigger mess but the top method worked the best. 
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,914
    Has to be your lump then. Not partial to RO myself.

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    The second pizza turned out great with RO. 
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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  • BakerManBakerMan Posts: 154
    I'm not sure what happened.  I cook pizza every week and never have trouble with smokey pizza.  I think you solved you problem by removing the vent cap and raising the temp.  I cook with top wide open and temp at 650 and pizza cooks in 8-10 minutes.  I never worry about whether I have new or old lump in the grill I just make sure the firebox has plenty of charcoal and stir it up so the vents are clear.
    BakerMan - Purcellville, VA
    "When its smokin' its cookin', when its black its done"
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  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 26,914
    Did you refill with fresh lump on the latest or re-light the stuff that was in there?

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

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  • travisstricktravisstrick Posts: 4,672
    All fresh lump. Both times.
    Be careful, man! I've got a beverage here.
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