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OK, so I bought my Amerique last Thursday (afternoon from Ken at The Charcoal Store. He said that mine should make it to me by Christmas if they received another shipment of AQs on Friday. Well, I anxiously waited over the weekend and on Monday morning, I tracked my order and it had already shipped! I received a phone call from R&L Shipping to expect it between noon and 2:00 on Tuesday, and it arrived at 11:40. I immediately opened the package, put the wheels on and plopped 3 chunks of wood in the box and turned it on. After 6 hours, I immediately set the AQ up for a real smoke and put two pork shoulders in for a spell with 2 chunks of apple and a chunk of hickory. I had the AQ probe in one shoulder and my new ET-73 in the other. The Maverick read about 10 degrees cooler the entire time of the smoke. I set the AQ to 180 and went to bed. About 6 1/2 hours later on Wednesday morning I woke up and turned up the heat to 225. It took a good while to get these pieces done, and they weren't up over 200 degrees by midnight so I went to bed and let the AQ put them on hold some time overnight. At 0700 Thursday morning I pulled the shoulders out and plopped a Costco leg of lamb I'd been marinating overnight (a thick paste of olive oil, minced garlic, granulated onion, pepper, salt, oregano, mint, a touch of brown sugar and yogurt mostly spooned into the interior of the netted leg and the remainder rubbed over the exterior) along with a chunk of apple and a chunk of hickory and set the AQ at 190, increasing the temp to 230 after 6 hours. Meanwhile, the pork shoulders rested for a spell, and when they were pulled apart, the crust was dark brown and crispy, but the interior was pink and squooshy. Quite a treat for breakfast on Christmas morning!
The lamb finished after about 8 1/2 hours, and it too had a darker exterior and pink and tender inside. The meat just melted in my mouth, and was easily cut with a fork. My brother-in-law, who normally hates lamb, had seconds and thirds, and only had one piece of the prime rib (which Wife forced me to roast in a conventional oven).

After all this cooking, the cleanup took about 3 minutes, except brushing the crusties off the rack with a grill brush before putting it in the dishwasher.

My problem? I'm seriously addicted to this thing, and I'm totally out of control! I dream about smoking potatoes for mashing, or eggplant for moussaka, or jalapeno peppers, or red cabbage for rotkohl, or mussels. I mean, I really dream about the AQ. I don't have enough space to put all the food I want to cook! But I don't want to stop! Help!
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A few of the posters have stated they like to be around 200 or 205 degrees. In fact, I believe the number 205 is stated in Pork Butt 101. Regardless, I didn't have much space in the fridge for that much pork on Christmas Eve, so I was happy to let it sit outside in the smoker in a holding pattern. I think it made the outside just a little crispier too.
I had to refrain from smoking for a day because I was at work for a 25 hour stint (I get to sleep there if nothing's going on, so it's not so bad), but today I'm going to try smoking some potatoes for mashing and some mushrooms for stuffing.
Still out of control!!
I brined some chickens, I've done some baby backs and several sets of spare ribs. I was cooking the spares for about 4 hours, and the meat was done, but they had the consistency of sirloin steak. I read to keep them in a few hours after the meat is cooked and they'll tenderize, so I've been doing that, and now they fall off the bone. I coat the ribs with French's mustard and then coat it with a dry rub.
All the food I'm making is outrageous! And so easy!!
Since I've gone back on Atkins (I go off during the holidays but I stay on most of the year), the smoker is REALLY getting a workout. Next week it's a goose. And more chickens. Damn they're good!
Originally posted by dred:
Oh yeah, Mainely Dave is certainly an inspiration. I'm planning on some smoked burgers and smoked jalapenos when it gets warmer. Now CS has a jalapeno holder for the grill!

Hi Dred--

Pags is Greek and loves Moussaka. I don't know if you've smoked your eggplant yet, but how are you planning on doing it?

You're right these smokers are addictive, but I've only done 3 smokes in a week. Planning ribs next.

I've grilled eggplant before, but never smoked it. My plan is to cut it up first, and dip each piece in salt water to remove the bitterness (you may already know to do this, but other adventurers might not), coat each piece with some olive oil (NOT extra virgin, since cooking makes all olive oil into regular olive oil and thus is an expensive waste) and sprinkle some lemon pepper, and smoke at a lower temp for an hour or two. If the melitzana isn't done by then, it can be finished off in the oven. Since eggplant is so absorptive, especially with oil soaked into it, I'd use a single SMALL piece of apple or cherry wood, broken into a few pieces to improve combustion. Cold smoking prior to regular cooking indoors would be good too, but I don't have a baffle yet. Kaln' 'Opexn!!

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