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Friday, February 10, 2012

Temperature Control

Well Folks: Today we will talk about  what  may be the most important parts of making Great BBQ. That is Temperature control. That is because controlling the temperature of your pit and knowing the temperature of the meat on the pit will determine the outcome of your cook. So I'll tell you what I think is the bare minimum you will need to have to insure a good outcome.

The first thing you need is a oven thermometer to tell you what the temperature is at grill level. These are cheap and you can find them at any big box store. The other option is a remote thermometer that you can put on the grill and monitor from inside the house. These are nice when you're smoking a large piece of meat like a pork butt, or a beef brisket. These too are available at big box stores, and can cost anywhere from $16.00 and up. Some of these even have two probes so you can monitor the grill temp. and the temp. of your meat.

The other thermometer you need is a fast reading thermometer to check the temperature of your meat.This is very important  because at different temps, different thing will happen to the meat, and at certain temps. you will want to perform different task to give the meat the most flavor and make it the most tender. Again these are available at big box stores and vary on price and how quickly they respond. I got lucky and won a Thermopen  thermometer. These are super fast giving you a reading in as little as 3 seconds. If you can afford one,they are well worth the money and last years.

No matter how much you spend,its important to check the thermometer  to make sure it is accurate. The easiest way to do this by boiling a pot water. Water boils at 212 degrees so bring a pot of water to a boil and insert the probe into the water making sure not touch the side of the pot and see what the thermometer reads. It should read 212 or very close, if not you will either have to adjust if it has a adjustment, or return it and get a new one.

Just a quick note about controlling the temperature of the pit. I do this by always leaving the top vent wide open and by controlling the air flow to the hot coals by opening and closing the inlet at the bottom of the smoker.

Well I'll stop talking now. Just know in the future I will be talking Temperature and, what to do at different Temperatures. You  having a good thermometer will insure you will also have a good result.

That's it for this week. Monday I'll start with a super easy dessert.