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hobobob

Weber Smokey Mountain First Fire Tips?

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So I pickup a new 18.5" weber smokey mountain from someone locally. Didn't plan to, it just happens.  It looks like a solid unit, the only thing I don't like is the flimsy aluminum door, have to figid it a bit to get it to fit half decent.   Plan to fire it up this weekend.   Any tips on choice of fuel? A fool proof recipe where I can set it and forget it. Maybe overnight from Friday night. I am thinking pork butt might be a good start. 

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Overnight might be frustrating for first cook.  First fill the water pan with sand and foil it or replace with a terra-cotta dish same size (kind that goes under a plant).   Water is a mess.   You can seal the door, I haven’t, but pretty much worthless during a cook to me.   

 

Usual first run people would recommend would be chicken with briquettes and vents wfo just so you see what it does.  

 

Ribs take 3-6 hours would be my next choice although early start to cook a butt ok too.   Overnight you run some risk of it going cold and then you won’t know what you have.  

 

Chunk charcoal runs a little hotter, burns out a little faster but if you stack it tightly you probably make it overnight. 

 

Cold weather not that much of an issue but wind can be.  

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The stock door sucks.  It can be used and conformed into shape and work fine(I cooked hundreds of pork shoulders and ribs on both my 18 and 22.5 with the stock), but I would recommend checking out cajunbandit and the upgraded door.... and fire ring, stacker, wheels, rotisserie, etc.    The door is a VERY nice upgrade. The fire ring is better than the original, but I wouldn't say must have.  I use the rotisserie for my 22.5 on both the smoker and for direct on my kettles.  The stacker is nice if you're going to want to do more food and need more cooking surface.

 

If the WSM isn't broken in, you wanna get some nice fatty stuff working ASAP and develop some of that vaporized fat schmoo that will season and seal up the little gaps.  A bunch of chicken thighs, a few pork shoulders, etc.

 

I totally agree with foiling the stock pan (3 layers) and filling it with playground sand.  Skip the water.  If you run the sand with no foil on top, just be sure to change that sand too... or eventually it's just going to turn into a big brick of fat.

 

 

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Got my fuel and meat ready to go. Don't need the additional capacity at the moment. Will consider other upgrades, first being the coal grate seems everyone seems to does it.  My local homie does not any garden stuff yet so I'll be lining the huge water bow with sand and foil first.

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On 3/13/2019 at 0:25 PM, hobobob said:

So I pickup a new 18.5" weber smokey mountain from someone locally. Didn't plan to, it just happens.  It looks like a solid unit, the only thing I don't like is the flimsy aluminum door, have to figid it a bit to get it to fit half decent.   Plan to fire it up this weekend.   Any tips on choice of fuel? A fool proof recipe where I can set it and forget it. Maybe overnight from Friday night. I am thinking pork butt might be a good start. 

Bumped the thread for ya.

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46 mins ago, hobobob said:

Got my fuel and meat ready to go. Don't need the additional capacity at the moment. Will consider other upgrades, first being the coal grate seems everyone seems to does it.  My local homie does not any garden stuff yet so I'll be lining the huge water bow with sand and foil first.

Sand is fine and lasts forever if you don’t let it get greased.  I use double layer of wide foil.   It’s kind of a brick now. 

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10 mins ago, Mike said:

Here's my thread on learning the WSM. 

www.stripersonline.com/surftalk/topic/234110-wsm-take-one/

 

Thanks Mike. Everywhere I read all said don't mix meat and fish in the same smoker, any truth in that?  I hope my first fire will be as good as yours.

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I have heard that too. I keep separate grates for fish and meat. I always toss the foil from my clay saucer after every smoke. Haven't noticed anything. Also, I don't smoke fish often.

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30 mins ago, hobobob said:

 

Thanks Mike. Everywhere I read all said don't mix meat and fish in the same smoker, any truth in that?  I hope my first fire will be as good as yours.

Read the whole thread. My first cook is only two pages. The guys added a lot of great info to the thread!

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26 mins ago, hobobob said:

 

Thanks Mike. Everywhere I read all said don't mix meat and fish in the same smoker, any truth in that?  I hope my first fire will be as good as yours.

It really depends on if you're doing a hot smoke or a cold smoke as well as the fattiness of the fish you're smoking.  

 

Using a separate grate and taking precautions not to let rendered fish fat get vaporized so you're limiting the amount of impact and residual flavor/aroma is the best bet if you're going to do a hot smoke with a higher fat fish.

 

Being allergic to fish, it doesn't go anywhere near my smokers.

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13 mins ago, DaD0ughB0y said:

It really depends on if you're doing a hot smoke or a cold smoke as well as the fattiness of the fish you're smoking.  

 

Using a separate grate and taking precautions not to let rendered fish fat get vaporized so you're limiting the amount of impact and residual flavor/aroma is the best bet if you're going to do a hot smoke with a higher fat fish.

 

Being allergic to fish, it doesn't go anywhere near my smokers.

You know this is a fishing site right? lol  I do plan to smoke fish with both methods from time to time.  Mike smoke fish and pork on the same day, his guest didn't seem to complain. Smelly fatty fish like bluefish and salmon too. lol

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3 hours ago, hobobob said:

You know this is a fishing site right? lol  I do plan to smoke fish with both methods from time to time.  Mike smoke fish and pork on the same day, his guest didn't seem to complain. Smelly fatty fish like bluefish and salmon too. lol

I did say that if you separate grate and take the precautions to not let the fat get vaporized by the high heat/coals/etc. you're going to reduce the impact.  I also smoke fish from time to time, but not in my smokers.  There's a weber kettle that I use for any fish.

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