Smoking good barbecue meats can be challenging even for some of the best Pitmasters. Throw in all the different varieties of meats and things can get complicated. Our cooking classes will teach you techniques used by the Pros to produce first class results.
These classes will teach you the ins and outs of meat selection, trimming, injecting or brining, seasoning combinations, cooking methods and presentation. Learn to cook award winning barbecue and WOW your guests! Spaces will fill up fast!
Ribs & Brisket Class
Ribs 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM $ 79.00 pp
Brisket 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM $ 99.00 pp
Chicken & Pork Class
Chicken Class 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM $ 69.00 pp
Pork Class 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM $ 85.00 pp
Both meats taught on each date. Do one, the other or both.
Attend the whole day and save $ 20.00!!!!!!
With each class you are served a full meal.
The March 19th class is a very special class!! Taught by the awarding winning Professional Competition Pitmaster Mat Griner of the BIG SHOW BBQ TEAM, !!!!
Everyone thinks they cook great ribs but you will learn to cook outstanding ribs consistently every time. Learn techniques that will yield moist, tender and tasty ribs for you and your guests!
If you are tired of cooking a lousy brisket and wasting money then this class is for you. Our King of Brisket will teach you all you need to know about cooking that perfect brisket. This class is back by popular demand so don’t miss it!!
Rib Class 8:30 AM to 12:00 PM $ 79.00 pp
Brisket Class 1:00 PM to 5:00 PM $ 99.00 pp
Attend both classes and save $ 20.00
With each class you are served a full meal.
March 19, 2016
April 30, 2016
May 28, 2016
What You Will Learn:
Meat selection, Trimming, Injecting/Brining, Seasoning combinations, Timelines, Cooking processes, Methods for cooking on any grill, Wood selection, Presentation, Common mistakes
If possible, place the smoker in an area where it is somewhat protected from the wind. Also away from anything flammable.
Coat the cooking grate with spray cooking oil.
Remove the cooking grate from the smoker and place the pig on it.
Optional-inject the butts and hams with a mixture of apple juice, apple cider vinegar, salt, pepper and garlic salt.
Rub the skin of the pig with vegetable oil.
Wrap tinfoil on the feet, snout and ears.
Load the fire box with about 20 lbs. of charcoal.
Light the charcoal and once you have a good burn throw in a couple of logs.
Fully open firebox vents.
Allow approximately 45-60 mins. for the smoker temp. to reach 300 to 325.
Ideally when the smoker reaches 325 place the pig and cooking grate in the smoker.
Your temperature is going to drop because of putting on the cold pig.
Don’t worry. Once the pig starts to warm up your temp. will come back up.
Maintain about 300 degrees on the gauge.
Maintaining temp. will be accomplished by either slightly closing the vents to lower temps and opening to raise temps.
Once adjusted it should stay at 300.
Add charcoal and wood as needed to maintain 300 degrees.
When the meat temp. reaches at least 185+ (higher like 190+ is OK) by using an instant read thermometer ( not dial ones-they can be off 25 degrees) your ready to remove the pig. Test the temp. both in the hams and butts. If the temps vary bring the lowest temp up to 185+ and don’t worry about the high temp.
You need at least two people to remove the pig.
Place a table close to the smoker. On it have the board you plan on placing the pig. Check that the feet are not stuck.
Carefully lifting the head and the butt and also trying to support the trunk move the pig onto the board.
You can also leave the pig on the grate for serving.
Double wrap the pig with heavy duty tinfoil.
Cover the pig with a blanket.
Allow to rest at least 1 hr.
The pig will stay hot for at least 3 hrs. and warm for several.
Garnish with greens and cut up fruit of varying colors.
Rule of thumb:
1 hr. for every 10 lbs. of pig.
Allow “wiggle room” of 1.5 hrs. in case the cook is taking longer and also to give the meat time to rest.
Plan 1lb. of charcoal for every LB. of pig. Again on larger pigs you may need less.
Lard Have Mercy
The method of getting the maximum amount of smoke into meat is to put the meat on the smoker cold.
The colder the meat, the better (not frozen).
Right out of the refrigerator or cooler is when the meat will take the most smoke.
As the internal temperature of the meat increases, the meat will take less smoke.
When the internal temperature reaches 140 to 150, the meat will not take on any more smoke.
Between 40 and 70 degrees, the meat accepts the most smoke.
From 70 to 140, it takes much less smoke.
Above 150 you are just generating heat, regardless of whether you are continuing to cook with wood.
So the best method is to get your meat on the smoker cold.
The science behind this will only bore you, so here is a simplistic discussion.
First of all, you do not need smoke to get a smoke ring.
You need the presence of nitric oxide (NO) and carbon monoxide (CO), which are byproducts of combustion.
Also, you need the presence of myoglobin also known as myowater, the liquid that is always in the meat package, which is often thought to be blood.
Myowater is in all meat and can make up 75% of its weight.
In the very early stages of the cook NO and CO will react with the myowater at the very surface of the meat and will enter the meat, changing the myowater to pink.
In its original state, myowater is purplish.
When the surface temperature of the meat reaches 170 degrees, NO and CO will stop reacting with the meat’s myowater, thus the end of the smoke ring.
For large cuts of meat like briskets and pork butts, it is important to remove the fat cap or otherwise the fat cap will quickly reach 170 degrees and NO and CO will not reach the meat.
Another idea is to start the cooking temperature lower, such as at 225 for about 1 ½ hours to allow NO and CO to enter the meat deeply before the surface reaches 170 degrees, then increase the temperature to 275 or so for the remainder of the cook.
This is one of the more important questions to be addressed when smoking.
When you initially fire up a smoker, you will be generating undesirable smoke.
This is normal.
The smoke will appear to be grayish white or white.
This is because the wood or charcoal is in what we call the primary burn.
The wood is heating up and is below 575 degrees.
It is not burning yet.
When the wood temperature moves above 575 to 600 degrees, it is in the secondary burn in which the wood will start to release gases and this is what gives off the flames and provides a good smoke for your cook.
Usually when this happens you will see a bluish white smoke coming out the chimney which is perfect for smoking.
Indirect cooking or offset smoking such as on our PR, TS, SQ units, Kamado Grills and Gas Grills (click here for smoking on a gas grill)
- 1 whole brisket (point and flat) 10 to 15 lbs.
- Butcher Prime Injection
- Vegetable oil
- Seasonings Listed Below
- Parkay Margarine (Sqeezable)
Cooking temperature 250 to 275.
Approximate cooking time 8 to 10 hours.
- If you can do the following the night before the better:
- Remove the “fat cap” leaving virtually no fat on the brisket.
- At the thinnest edge of the flat cut a small chunk off cutting across the grain this way you know which angle to cut when the brisket is done.
- Mix Butcher Prime Injection in accordance with the label and inject fat cap side about every square inch ( in a grid pattern) going into the meat ¾ of the thickness and inject on the way out (mix the injection 24 hours ahead if possible for better results and keep agitated when injecting).
- Rub vegetable oil on the entire brisket. This helps to “glue” your rub to the meat.
- Rub the meat with your favorite rub. We like to layer our seasonings on brisket and enjoy a 1st layer of Obie Cue’s Double Garlic Pepper topped with Smoking Guns Hot and Meat Church Holy Cow. Another option is Obie Cue’s Double Garlic Pepper topped with Lotta Bull’s Red Dirt.
- Wrap the brisket in loosely in foil or in a foil pan and place back in the fridge fat cap up.
- Light a charcoal fire and stabilize the temperature at 225 to 250 (this lower temp allows for the heat that will be generated when you put the on).
- Add a few chunks of hickory or blend of pecan and cherry to the charcoal (no soft woods!)
- Take the brisket out of the fridge or the cooler and place on the smoker or grill COLD (see our article on smoking).
- Place the brisket with the fat cap up.
- Place a digital thermometer probe in the thickest part of the flat (it is wise to also measure the cooking grate temp for greater accuracy).
- Close the lid and leave it closed.
- Smoking of the brisket will take place in the very early stages of the cooking process (1 ½ to 2 hours).
- When the brisket reaches an internal temp of 160 degrees take it off and place it on two layers of tin foil.
- Squirt liquid Parkay Margarine on top of the brisket.
- Wrap the brisket up in the two layers of tin foil and put back in the cooker.
- Place the probe back into the meat.
- Note-Don’t freak out if the cook time stalls at around 160 degrees. This is normal.
- Bring the meat temp up to 195.
- Take the temp probe and push it in sideways into the meat in a few places. If it’s done, you should feel very little resistance when pushing the probe.
- If not, continue cooking until tender until the probe passes through the brisket like going through butter. The brisket will be probably done somewhere around 198 to 210.
- Once done, remove the brisket from the smoker or grill and open the two layers of foil and allow the steam to escape for 5 minutes. Once done wrap the brisket in a 3rd piece of foil.
- Wrap the brisket up with beach towels and place in a cooler to rest for two hours if possible.
- Unfoil the meat being careful to retain the juices in the foil. Pour the juices in a bowl. Mix the juice and if needed extend with BBQ sauce such as Eat Barbecue’s The Next Best Thing or Smokey Mountain Smoker’s Original Sauce.
- Slice in the same direction as your cut off (meat across the grain) and if needed lightly sprinkle the slices with the juice mixture.
Pitmasters better than most know how important it is to have that perfect smoke when barbecuing. It can make the difference between winning or losing in the contest circuit. It is as important for the novice and the backyard pro. It can mean a perfect cook and a disaster. The last thing you want to be known as is the GrillMaster whose meats taste like a pure hardwood baguette. So yes, there is good and bad smoke.
Let’s discuss what is happening with combustion and the production of smoke. All forms of combustion can produce some amount of smoke, just some are better than others. Wood, pellets, charcoal produce better combustible byproducts than gas and electric. So our discussion will concentrate on wood.
In the most technical sense wood goes through 4 stages of burning. To avoid a highly technical and boring conversation we will call it two stages. At GrillBillies we explain to customers that wood goes through two major phases. The primary and the secondary burn. The primary burn is the phase where the wood is heating up and in our case over a bed of hot charcoal. We like to start our offset reverse flow, direct flow and upright smokers with a good base layer of hot charcoal.
In the primary burn the wood is just heating up (smoldering). The same by-products nitrates, carbon monoxide, creosote that gives us that delicious smoky flavor are produced but just in a different state. When the wood is heating up it is producing the same combustible by products but in large particulates. In this state they are heavy and can “drop out” on the food resulting in a very smokey strong taste. The smoke you see in this stage is a billowing white or gray white smoke. This is the smoke to avoid when cooking low and slow.
When wood heats up to a temperature of about 575 to 600 degrees the gases in the wood are released and the wood bursts into flames. The particulates from the burning gases are smaller and that gives us the smoke which makes our barbecue so good. At this stage the smoke will be a visible blue/white.
There are 100 combustible by products from burning wood. The ones that contribute the most to the flavor of our barbecue are nitric oxide, creosote, carbon monoxide, carbon dioxide, guaiacol, syringol, phenols and water vapor. In a properly burning fire these by products will add just the right amount of flavor to your meat.
Now all being said there is a point during the cooking process where you may think you have returned to the primary burn. Well into the cook the meat is heating up and releasing juices that will vaporize and exit the pit giving the impression that we returned to that billowing white smoke associated with the primary burn. This water vapor and is normal. As long as your wood is lit there is no problem.
How do we achieve the perfect smoke? Start with a good bed of lit charcoal. Add properly seasoned wood. Have all vents wide open so the fire gets enough oxygen to achieve combustion and within several minutes you should see the smoke change from a billowing white to a nice blue white. Time to get the meat on!