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Too much smokey flavor?? Please help!

cdees_1993cdees_1993 Posts: 135
edited February 2013 in EggHead Forum
I know some would say this is not possible but I am not sure if it is the brand of charcoal or what but I need some advice. It almost has too much of a smokey flavor.  I am using lump charcoal that came in big grey bag from my dealer.  They said it was the best you can use but everything almost tastes too smokey.  

What are your thoughts on how to fix this? 

Comments

  • RLeeperRLeeper Posts: 479
    What is the name of the lump? Maybe you are putting the food on too early and not waiting for the clear smoke.
    Extra Large, Large, and Mini. Tucker, GA
  • six_eggsix_egg Posts: 594
    RLeeper said:
    What is the name of the lump? Maybe you are putting the food on too early and not waiting for the clear smoke.
    I agree with RLeeper. I have seen people post here about that same thing.

    XLBGE, LBGE growing accessories.

    Want: Ceramicgrillworks 2 tier large, Dutch oven, Cyber Q Wifi

    Grenada, MS

  • Not sure on name our dealer said it was the best to use and it came in a large grey bag.

  • How long should it take to get clear smoke?

  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 5,116
    Put your hand over the DFMT and smell the smoke-when it smells good, it is good-there are a few variables WRT time so let your nose be the judge.
    Louisville
  • six_eggsix_egg Posts: 594
    The color should be like a blueish white and a favorable smell not over powering.

    XLBGE, LBGE growing accessories.

    Want: Ceramicgrillworks 2 tier large, Dutch oven, Cyber Q Wifi

    Grenada, MS

  • cdees_1993cdees_1993 Posts: 135
    edited February 2013
    Would excess smokey flavor have something to do with the fact that I was cooking with bottom wide open and trying to control the temp with the top damper?  I know I am still a newbie and learning.


  • RLeeperRLeeper Posts: 479
    Would excess smokey flavor have something to do with the fact that I was cooking with bottom wide open and trying to control the temp with the top damper?  I know I am still a newbie and learning.



    That shouldn't make a difference in the taste. I think it has to do with letting the harmful smell burn off completely. The other possibility may be the lump. Some lump has more of a smoke profile than others.
    Extra Large, Large, and Mini. Tucker, GA
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 5,116
    Think of the BGE and air-flow like a garden hose-you can throttle with the faucet or the nozzle-either way the quantity of water can be controlled.  Same with the upper and lower vents-either one or a combination will yield the same air-flow.  And air-flow drives the temperature-should have no bearing on smoke flavor any more than the flavor of wood/lump used once you burn off the VOC's-and you know you have achieved that when the smoke smells good.
    Louisville
  • mb99zzmb99zz Posts: 182
    I had the same experience when I first got my egg.  I think I was trying to put my food on too soon.  Now I wait for quite a while -- at least 20 minutes before I cook.  By then, that strong (almost acrid) smell is gone.  

    What do you use to start your fire?  I use the BGE branded starter cubes.  I feel like they have a very unpleasant odor when they burn and I make sure that they're totally burned as part of my waiting process.  Just thought I'd throw that in.  
  • lousubcap said:
    Think of the BGE and air-flow like a garden hose-you can throttle with the faucet or the nozzle-either way the quantity of water can be controlled.  Same with the upper and lower vents-either one or a combination will yield the same air-flow.  And air-flow drives the temperature-should have no bearing on smoke flavor any more than the flavor of wood/lump used once you burn off the VOC's-and you know you have achieved that when the smoke smells good.
    OK newbie moment.  What are voc's?

  • mb99zz said:
    I had the same experience when I first got my egg.  I think I was trying to put my food on too soon.  Now I wait for quite a while -- at least 20 minutes before I cook.  By then, that strong (almost acrid) smell is gone.  

    What do you use to start your fire?  I use the BGE branded starter cubes.  I feel like they have a very unpleasant odor when they burn and I make sure that they're totally burned as part of my waiting process.  Just thought I'd throw that in.  
    I use an electric starter to start.   I will try letting it burn off a little longer before putting food on because smoke doesn't smell great.  In fact not fond at all of way clothes smell at all when done cooking.  Maybe that would solve that problem too. HAHAHHAA


  • Would excess smokey flavor have something to do with the fact that I was cooking with bottom wide open and trying to control the temp with the top damper?  I know I am still a newbie and learning.
     
    Thats the way i operate my egg -- bottom vent wide open unless i am using my temperature control fan.  Lump is made in big batches and the source wood can cause more or less smoke causing chemicals.  Change to a different manufacturer, because your dealer may have six contaminated pallets of crap !!


  • mb99zzmb99zz Posts: 182
    mb99zz said:
    I had the same experience when I first got my egg.  I think I was trying to put my food on too soon.  Now I wait for quite a while -- at least 20 minutes before I cook.  By then, that strong (almost acrid) smell is gone.  

    What do you use to start your fire?  I use the BGE branded starter cubes.  I feel like they have a very unpleasant odor when they burn and I make sure that they're totally burned as part of my waiting process.  Just thought I'd throw that in.  
    I use an electric starter to start.   I will try letting it burn off a little longer before putting food on because smoke doesn't smell great.  In fact not fond at all of way clothes smell at all when done cooking.  Maybe that would solve that problem too. HAHAHHAA

    I totally agree on the clothes smell from that initial burn smoke.  In general, I avoid the egg after I get the burn going.  To me, the smell is that unpleasant.  I go back out on the deck after it's been going a while.

  • RLeeper said:

    What is the name of the lump? Maybe you are putting the food on too early and not waiting for the clear smoke.

    I'm curious. I've had the same experience. I thought I was putting the meat on to soon also. What is happening when the smoke gets clear? What was causing it to not be clear then all of a sudden get clear?
    Columbia, SC

  • WolfpackWolfpack Posts: 1,031
    Let burn 30 min at least- then put food on
    Greensboro, NC
  • RLeeperRLeeper Posts: 479
    VOC are volatile organic compounds that are found in the lump and other types of charcoal. Most say burn until the smoke goes clear or emits a pleasant smell before adding your food. This is a part of your stabilization process. In my experience it usually takes around thirty minutes for them to burn off.
    Extra Large, Large, and Mini. Tucker, GA
  • I am not a scientist --  but this is my theory!  Certainly you guys have noticed the egg "burping" or "farting" when it hits somewhere around 330 degrees??  It will blow some hot enbers out the bottom vent and make a "wooshing"  sound!!  Well, the white smoke created by the new lump has a petroleum base, and starts showing up as soon as your starting source heats the lump.  at around 330 degrees dome reading this petroleum white smoke of gas flashes - causing a gush of air in the egg.  From that point forward, i don't have any "bad smoke"...   Thats my theory and i'm stickin to it !!!  :((
  • Cdees, I had same issue at first. It is the VOCs. Like said above, all you need to do is let it burn about 20 minutes. The smell test will tell you. Smell the smoke after 5 or 10 minutes, it will have a strong smell. Then wait 25 minutes and repeat. The smoke will then be nearly odorless in comparison. Your lump is fine. Now if I get the voc smoke on my hands I have to come in and wash in and wash.
  • I am definitely trying that tomorrow burr_baby33!  

  • Mattman3969Mattman3969 Posts: 2,895
    I agree with the VOC's. I didn't know about bad smoke until I started reading here and it has made a remarkable difference in the taste of my foods since I know what I am looking for in the smoke

    -----------------------------------------


    Large BGE. Small BGE Henderson, Ky. Waitin to find a Sasquatch to Egg.
  • Wait 20 to 30 minutes before you cook. You should be fine. I had that problem on my first cook as well.
    image
    Louisville, GA - 2 Large BGE's
  • The egg is not a gasser. It takes awhile to get it going. Learn patience, the best cooks are the ones I let the egg heat for 30-45 minutes. Clear smoke and great cooking. 
    At low and slow temps, <275/300 there will be more smoke as the lump is just smouldering away. 
    Delta B.C. - Vee-Gan: old Indian word for poor hunter. 
  • EggcelsiorEggcelsior Posts: 8,873
    Skiddy is right. Patience grasshopper, patience
  • BigWaderBigWader Posts: 494

    another thought is if you overshoot the temp you want to cook at and then choke it down to try and cool it off.  Then you are creating incomplete combustion and therefore more bad smoke.  As others have said - try and hit the temp you want to cook at on the way up and then let it stabilize a bit before putting food on.

    That said - my wife hated BGE charcoal that I started with - too smokey (I think it has more hickory) and I switched to Maple Leaf (primarily Maple) and now Wicked Good and have better luck with both of these.

     

    Large BGE

     

  • WiltOnTiltWiltOnTilt Posts: 102
    edited February 2013
    As a relatively new egger, I've been following the recommendation of waiting 20-30 minutes before putting the meat on, but when doing low and slows, new lump will ignite as the hours to by and the fire burns outward/downward, right? If that's true, won't that newly lit coal also emit these VOCs and/or bad flavors? It hasn't yet been a problem for me, but this is something a bit confusing to me. Thanks!
  • U_tardedU_tarded Posts: 1,193
    As a relatively new egger, I've been following the recommendation of waiting 20-30 minutes before putting the meat on, but when doing low and slows, new lump will ignite as the hours to by and the fire burns outward/downward, right? If that's true, won't that newly lit coal also emit these VOCs and/or bad flavors? It hasn't yet been a problem for me, but this is something a bit confusing to me. Thanks!
    as your temp stabilizes its my understanding that the vocs burn off of the other lump not creating a problem.  its on a problem during startup/stabilization with fresh lump but the heat surrounding the lump drives off the vocs.  im not a scientist but i am a fat kid and that has to count for something.
  • As a relatively new egger, I've been following the recommendation of waiting 20-30 minutes before putting the meat on, but when doing low and slows, new lump will ignite as the hours to by and the fire burns outward/downward, right? If that's true, won't that newly lit coal also emit these VOCs and/or bad flavors? It hasn't yet been a problem for me, but this is something a bit confusing to me. Thanks!
    as your temp stabilizes its my understanding that the vocs burn off of the other lump not creating a problem.  its on a problem during startup/stabilization with fresh lump but the heat surrounding the lump drives off the vocs.  im not a scientist but i am a fat kid and that has to count for something.
    LOL Excellent, thanks!
  • Well guys thank you so much for helping me fix this problem!!!  It turns out that it wasn't the lump at all.  The smokey excess flavor disappeared when I did as recommended on here and let it stabilize for like 30 minutes before putting on meat and then closing down my bottom vent more instead of trying to control temp primarily with the top vent.
    Thanks to everyone for your help!  The results were fabulous today!!


  • I am glad it worked out for you. I learn a little more every time I cook on my BGE!
    image
    Louisville, GA - 2 Large BGE's
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