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1st cook, Phase II

GeoduckGeoduck Posts: 76
edited 10:11PM in EggHead Forum
Well, tonight I put the lump ON TOP of the grate, worked MUCH better! Have no idea where my common sense was last night. I did think that there wasn’t very much room for charcoal.

Tonight’s lesson was a bit simpler: calibrate the dome thermometer before you use it the FIRST time. Couldn’t keep the temp above 300. Hit the bottom vent with a hair drier a couple of times, got it up to 350 but it wouldn’t stay there even with daisy wheel and bottom vent wide open. Even so, I knew the chicken was cooking so didn’t worry. Finally, after an hour an 20 minutes (!) I checked the chicken temps with my new trusty Thermapen. Breast 190, Thigh 201. Nevertheless it was moist and very tasty. Only used salt, pepper and a little garlic oil because I wanted to taste “plain” chicken before adding fancy flavors.

All in all I’m pleased with Cook #1. My big question is, even given that the dome thermometer needs calibrating, why didn’t the temp skyrocket when I left the daisy wheel and bottom vent wide open. Did I not use enough lump? (It was just below the firebox vents)

Thanks to all for the info, encouragement and sympathy!

Here is the evidence…
Lighting method: 3 pieces of paper towel with oil
Fire is lit
Ready to close the dome
Cold on the grill
Hot ON the grill
Hot OFF the grill
The remains of the day... & lunch tomorrow


  • JBJB Posts: 510
    I'm pretty new as well, but I fill with lump almost to the fire ring, at least get it above the holes in the firebox. I get 650-700 in 15 mins with bottom vent wide open and daisy wheel off.
  • Hi Susan.
    Fill it up with some lump!!! Fill it past the ring and even further. The lump does not go to waste. When you are done cooking, clamp down the vents and the remaining lump is saved for next time. You have to have enough fire in there, so use your lump!! When you have a nice fire, you will be able to cook your chicken perfectly. Keep trying, and post your questions.

    Happily egging on my original large BGE since 1996... now the owner of 6 eggs. Call me crazy, everyone else does!
    3 Large, 2 Smalls, 1 well-used Mini
  • Success! We will call this the first time. :whistle: Good looking cook. Fill the fire box up to the ring like Faith and JB mentioned. Unlike briquettes you can reuse the lump. More lump will make a big difference in your temps. Also leave the dome closed while warming up this will also heat up the ceramics in the Egg.:) I hope the notes I passed on helped. Congrats on your first cook. :)
  • HossHoss Posts: 14,600
    What she said! B)
  • eenie meenieeenie meenie Posts: 4,393
    Looks like it was worth waiting for. :) Nothing like chicken on the egg. We'll look forward to your future cooks.
  • What they said. You will figure it out. Buy a lot of meat that is one sale and just get used to cooking. No sense buying Kobe filets and having a bad good. Just experiment.

    As for the lump I always fill it to the top and I usually do this when i do a low and slow (ribs, brisket, pork shoulder, etc) after that the next day I may cook some burgers or whatever. When it is about half way down then I plan on doing my high heat stuff like steak. Then I just let it burn out since there is not much left anyway. This helps clean the grates, the egg, the daisy, and whatever else I throw in there.

    This forum is a lifesaver. Check it everyday and don't be shy. The day you stop learning is the day you stop trying
  • Geoduck,
    A good way to save your lump is when shutting it down, use the original green top that came with the egg. I even glued some gasket in the inside of it with 3M77. This stops air flow PERIOD. And allows you to save alot more lump for next time. If you don't have a piece of gasket, just use a piece of tin foil, then place the top over it.

    Happily egging on my original large BGE since 1996... now the owner of 6 eggs. Call me crazy, everyone else does!
    3 Large, 2 Smalls, 1 well-used Mini
  • ric3677ric3677 Posts: 278
    I 'm with everyone else...more lump and less cooking.
    The breast is done at 155 and the thigh is cooked at 180
    Anything above that is drying out the meat.

    Your chicken looked great. Nice pics.

    Rick in Mt.
  • EggatoriumEggatorium Posts: 99
    I liked that the chicken never moved except in the end!
  • tbonemactbonemac Posts: 69
    I was doing the same thing that you did. Not adding enough lump. I could not hold a high temp for very long and even lost my fire. Now I fill it up. It is amzing how fast the fire will go out when you shut it down and still have enough lump for future cooks. Also I am only using 1 towel to get my fire going and not having to use the hair dryer. I also got some fire bricks from the local lumber yard to set on the fire ring and then set my cast iron grid on for a raised grid set-up. Works great. Good luck

  • popedaddypopedaddy Posts: 51
    Like JB said make sure you take the DAISY WHEEL OFF when starting the egg. Makes kinda like the perfect storm of air draft to get the coals blazing.

    Egg On
  • Lotsa good recommendations.

    You have the photo posting down just right - keep em coming. :)
  • GeoduckGeoduck Posts: 76
    Thanks for all the support & ideas. I did use just one towel for starting the fire but tore it into three pieces. Will fire up again tomorrow with a full load of lump and use some foil under the ceramic cap to extinguish the coals.

    THANKS TO ALL! :kiss:
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