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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 06-09-2015, 10:26 AM   #1
Coat
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Default Maiden Cook on the Cinder block Pit

I'm waiting on my firewood to be cut so i can go pick it up, but i couldn't wait any longer to fire up this monster i built in my backyard. She's somewhat temporary, and dry stacked, but once i work out all the kinks of cooking this way, I'm gonna re-stack her with a solid foundation and mortar, etc.

Anyway--i didn't put anything on the meat at all--wanted to see what kind of flavor would be generated by cooking this way. I usually cook a pork tenderloin roast for my first cook on any pit because it is a good test for both tenderness and flavor, doesn't cost much, and has a good medium cook time. (all due respect to the fatty crowd--i love them, too)


I tried to set up the fireplace for ease of shoveling--it worked well as far as that goes. I'm still working out how far apart the rebar should be to make the perfect size coals fall through, though. Right now it's a little bit stingy with the coals. May space out the rebar a bit more. Since I was making do with chunks, i was afraid to space it out too much for fear the wood wouldn't stay on top of the rebar very well.


Not sure how many of you guys have shoveled hardwood coals into a pit like this for your Bar-B-Q, but this had the most elegant and deeply penetrated smokiness I've produced, having cooked on offsets the most, pellet poppers second most, and kettles as well. When I've cooked on an offset, I've gotten good smoke, but a good portion of that flavor has been in the bark. With this cook, the smoke flavor was a little more mild, but it was all the way into the meat. As far as pure pork flavor and moisture and tenderness, this was one of the best pieces of meat I've cooked (taking into consideration the limitations of the cut). The meat itself had a depth of pork flavor to it that my wife picked up on as well. I don't know why that is the case, but it may be because of the wood coals catching the drippings and sending them right back up to the pork in the smoke? Maybe some of you can explain that part?

I also set up a small grate above the fireplace for grilling while I make coals. Grilled some chicken breasts on it, and they were amazing. The flames stayed just below the grate, and may have licked the chicken once or twice (who can blame them?), and it turned out perfect.

All in all, i think this blind squirrel may have found an acorn somehow. Pretty happy with the way it all turned out, all said.

Thanks for looking--PRON is limited because we had a stormy day yesterday and it got dark in a hurry.
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:34 AM   #2
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Very Nice!
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:38 AM   #3
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gotta love the ol' cinder block pits!

have fun!
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:42 AM   #4
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BBQ in it purest form. I've ate a lot of great BBQ off a pit similar to that and the closest to getting that same flavor is a UDS with no stinkin diffuser.
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:49 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bludawg View Post
BBQ in it purest form. I've ate a lot of great BBQ off a pit similar to that and the closest to getting that same flavor is a UDS with no stinkin diffuser.
i have been thinking about that. i bet a UDS really is closest. maybe even an egg? i've never cooked on either one, so i can't really say. but i wanted to do it like my papaw did it, so a few hundred pounds of block later, here i sit.
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:56 AM   #6
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Looks sweet but I wouldn't mortar anything. I think you'll find that as time goes on, and with the heat and cool cycle with the block that you will find them starting to crack and pop.

used to try and build small fires with these blocks and while it was fine for most of the summer, one day we just started hearing popping and the block just started falling apart.
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Old 06-09-2015, 10:57 AM   #7
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Originally Posted by Mikeinctown View Post
Looks sweet but I wouldn't mortar anything. I think you'll find that as time goes on, and with the heat and cool cycle with the block that you will find them starting to crack and pop.

used to try and build small fires with these blocks and while it was fine for most of the summer, one day we just started hearing popping and the block just started falling apart.
yeah i'm expecting that. if i mortar one, i'll add firebrick lining. don't know how much that'll help, but hopefully it'll help some.
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Old 06-09-2015, 12:00 PM   #8
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Very cool. I've always wanted to build one of those "just for the fun of it". Look forward to more posts featuring it.
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Old 06-09-2015, 12:38 PM   #9
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:10 PM   #10
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Goin' old school.
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Old 06-09-2015, 01:42 PM   #11
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interesting...so the entire front is just open? hope your wood roof doesnt catch on fire lol
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Old 06-09-2015, 02:11 PM   #12
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interesting...so the entire front is just open?
Nah I have plywood cut for the front as well.
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Old 06-09-2015, 03:30 PM   #13
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oh ok that makes more sense now lol
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Old 06-09-2015, 05:47 PM   #14
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Food looks great. I learned to cook on a block pit and it's still my favorite. The best BBQ I ever had was a sandwich I pulled at sunrise one morning after an all nighter. I have cooked on a friend's pit with a concrete floor and one we set up every July 4th. I have always spread some sand in the bottom to make a good coal bed. We closed up the front most of the way with. Block but left open in the center, you could still get coals to both ends with a long shovel. We covered the opening with a piece of tin or plywood after we fired it.
For your coal bed try spreading them out a little and putting another row crossways. If you have fire ants around, they will try to nest in your blocks so keep an eye out. Good luck! I think you are on the right track.
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Old 06-09-2015, 06:10 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Big Andy View Post
Food looks great. I learned to cook on a block pit and it's still my favorite. The best BBQ I ever had was a sandwich I pulled at sunrise one morning after an all nighter. I have cooked on a friend's pit with a concrete floor and one we set up every July 4th. I have always spread some sand in the bottom to make a good coal bed. We closed up the front most of the way with. Block but left open in the center, you could still get coals to both ends with a long shovel. We covered the opening with a piece of tin or plywood after we fired it.
For your coal bed try spreading them out a little and putting another row crossways. If you have fire ants around, they will try to nest in your blocks so keep an eye out. Good luck! I think you are on the right track.
Thanks for the insights bro. I'm basically free wheeling it so any input from folks who have dunnit this way is definitely appreciated!
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