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Unread 08-11-2009, 07:35 PM   #27
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Originally Posted by barbefunkoramaque View Post
Then... I find that there is a HUGE tissy about it.

So please, feel me in. Last time I commented on this I was told, quite abruptly I might ad, that people can and DO win contests with this.

So... as one all wood guy... to other, whatever you guys use. Please, talk to me. No insults, no reason to get all upset, really.... what's the deal? Why is this considered a joke by some.

I have NOT tasted BBQ from this type of machine. I actually CAN tell electric and Gas NTTAWWT.

Once again.... don't be insulting (unless its toward me) because a friend of yours here could use one....
I have quoted your origonal post with edits to get this back to your question, as I understand it.
To paraphrase it---"How much and what kind of smoke flavor???"
Hope I got it right.
Here is my take.

I have cooked on stick burners, charcoal and chunk burners, electrics, gas rigs, and pellet poopers.
"Smoke intensity or flavor" is simply a function of three things:

Type of wood. A hickory log is exactly the same as a pure hickory pellet. Just bigger and less pure/clean.

Amount of smoke. This is normally a function of temp, airflow, and wood quality on any cooker.

And finally, time in the smoke. This is a function of temp.

On pure sticks, I cook hot (300 plus) like you do.
Lots of flavor as you know.
We have won our share of "brass and cash" cooking that way.

The same "lots of smoke flavor" results at middle range temps (230-300?)with sticks or charcoal/chunks for a moderate cooking time.
Once again, our share of "brass and cash" cooking that way.

Now, if you blend the two and cook with pure sticks or a lot of chunks and take them down at the low temp range (200-225?) you get a whole bunch of really intense smoke flavor.

A lot of folks are used to really smoky flavored BBQ.
That is what they have always cooked or been served.
Others consider that intense smoky flavor to be "too much"--just a matter of taste.

Enter the Pellet Pooper.
They use pure wood--no change there.
But, they burn in a small "firepot" that is fueled by pellets and augmented with a blast of air.
Simply a "Forge" fire type situation.
Very efficient--in fact too efficient at times.
If I put a butt or brisket in my FEC or Traeger and cook it at 350 (like I did on a stick burner), it has little smoke flavor compared to a stick burner--for sure.

Now, since I understand a pellet pooper, I will normally cook at a low temp for an hour or (many hours). This gets me back to the smoke flavor I want.
Two things happen--
1. A longer time "in the smoke" and that is good no matter what you are cooking on (to a point).
2. The firepot is less efficient at low temps resulting is a lot more "smoke" being produced.

After a "smoke" period, I just bump to higher temps and finish the cook.

Will a pellet pooper ever produce the intense smoke flavor of a stick burner run at the low to mid 200's---never.

But, it is a fine smoke flavor for most of us.
For lack of a better name, I consider it to be a gentle but pleasing smoke flavor.
And Friends, Family, and Judges seem to agree

CHIT--I just ran on forever!
Sorry--just important to me for folks to understand.

I now own two pellet machines, each for a different purpose and with two different personalities.
My life is so much simpler now, compared to my days of sticks or charcoal/chunks.

Just works for me.

"Flirtin' with Disaster" BBQ Team (RETIRED)
FBA and KCBS Cook and Judge.
Former owner of a WSM, a Smokey Joe, a Charbroil Commercial gasser (junk), the legendary "StudeDera", a FEC100, a Fast Eddy PG500, and Sherman the Wonder Trailer.
Now cooking with a Yoder YS640
Proud Pellet guy cooking on real wood.
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