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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 12-07-2012, 08:53 AM   #1
Flying_Spaghetti_Monster
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Default Cooking in cold weather.

I have a cook planed for saturday, but the weather says it will be in the low 30's, and snowing up to an inch. Thinking about canceling, and just grilling steaks for me, and my girlfriend. Question is how hard would it be to fight the weather. I have held temp well at 40 degrees, but it was dry out side.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 09:16 AM   #2
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Are you grilling or smoking? Two very different things.

In my limited experience I have found that a high temp grill doesn't get effected by the weather, especially in the 30's. What does effect it is wind and precipitation. If it isn't snowing very hard and it isn't windy then you should be ok. Tow things I suggest, use a chimney to get the coals going and move you grill close to the house so it take advantage of the ambient temperature. ALso, I would use extra coals and get the heat nice an high before you throw the steaks on.

If you are smoking then it really does depend on what you are using and how thin the metal is. Low n' slow is much more susceptible to weather conditions then hot n' fast.

And as others always say, YMWV.

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Unread 12-07-2012, 09:21 AM   #3
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It depends on the cooker you use, but even a thin walled crappy cooker should be able to cook fine in 30 degree weather. You might jsut need a little more fuel is all.

I have cooked at below zero temperatures with my WSM's (as low as -6) without having to do anything more than simply adding more lit coals when doing the Minion method and opening the vents all the way. No problems at all.

High wind though...that's antoher story with those WSM's. At -6 with high wind, that might not work, but I've never had the gift to try and cook in that weather.

You MUST go ahead and cook. Don't let things like the weather get in the way. What if it starts a surprise rain storm mid-cook? Are you just going to give up?

Personally, I enjoy cooking on both the hottest and coldest days of the year, just to spite the weather. Maybe I'm pissing ol' Mother Nature off though, and that's why weather is so weird lately. Al Gore can take all the credit he wants, but it was I who pissed off that old bag.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 09:24 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigabyte View Post
Personally, I enjoy cooking on both the hottest and coldest days of the year, just to spite the weather. Maybe I'm pissing ol' Mother Nature off though, and that's why weather is so weird lately. Al Gore can take all the credit he wants, but it was I who pissed off that old bag.
Amen to that Chris. Totally the way I am wired as well. Though I had a a hard time explaining to people why I walked a mile to work this morning in the rain as opposed to driving.

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Unread 12-07-2012, 09:46 AM   #5
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First off I understand the difference between grilling, and smoking. I was planning on smoking a pork shoulder, and some ribs low, and slow on saturday. If the weather was to bad I planned on switching that to just GRILLING steaks. My pit is heavy non UDS BS. It is 3/8" thick on my main chamber, and 1/2" thick on my fire box. She holds heat just never had her working in the snow. I enjoy cooking in any weather. I will freeze my ass off grilling good steaks when others are making shake, and bake. Or dare I say..... Pan frying a steak
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Unread 12-07-2012, 10:22 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying_Spaghetti_Monster View Post
First off I understand the difference between grilling, and smoking. I was planning on smoking a pork shoulder, and some ribs low, and slow on saturday. If the weather was to bad I planned on switching that to just GRILLING steaks. My pit is heavy non UDS BS. It is 3/8" thick on my main chamber, and 1/2" thick on my fire box. She holds heat just never had her working in the snow. I enjoy cooking in any weather. I will freeze my ass off grilling good steaks when others are making shake, and bake. Or dare I say..... Pan frying a steak
My apologies - I wasn't clear on what you were saying originally. However, when I reread your original post I realize where I went wrong.

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Unread 12-07-2012, 11:55 AM   #7
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Maybe a moving blanket over the food chamber will help too. Wool or cotton, not synthetic that'll melt.

Sounds like your pit won't need that, though.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 11:59 AM   #8
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Okay I will go through with the cook, and see how it goes. Its supposed to be pretty damn cold though. We will see it will be good to test her out.
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Unread 12-07-2012, 11:59 AM   #9
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Winter here is -30 easy at night. I cook all winter long. Doing a shoulder tonight
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Unread 12-07-2012, 12:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Winter here is -30 easy at night. I cook all winter long. Doing a shoulder tonight
Can I get an amen for another brother north of the 49th Parallel?!!
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Unread 12-07-2012, 12:03 PM   #11
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Grantw - where you from in Canada? I lived in Ottawa for over 20 years.

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Unread 12-07-2012, 02:09 PM   #12
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If it's cold enough to stand outside and have my hands feel numb, I generally don't cook. OK, I'm a wimp. :)

You will be fine, you will just use more fuel.

Good luck!

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Unread 12-07-2012, 03:14 PM   #13
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Cold weather aint got nothin on the UDS.

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Unread 12-07-2012, 03:22 PM   #14
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Smoke that butt, don't get chased off. You might need some extra fuel is all. If it's windy, just put up a baffle near your intake, to slow the wind.

And I pan fry steaks by choice, I happen to love a cast iron seared steak, there is always more than one way
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Unread 12-07-2012, 03:33 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Flying_Spaghetti_Monster View Post
Okay I will go through with the cook, and see how it goes. Its supposed to be pretty damn cold though. We will see it will be good to test her out.

Now your talking! Please update how it all goes.
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