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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 12-03-2009, 11:01 AM   #1
leanza
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Default Pure Wood Cook Is Novice Mistake.

In Mike Mills book "Peace Love BBQ", Mills goes on to say,

"A novice BBQ cook may not realize that the major heat source in BBQ should be the charcoal. People who get all of their heat directly from wood will oversmoke their meat. You can make your own charcoal by burning down your wood, but just using wood will not result in great BBQ. Smoke should be an ingredient....".

Intresting. I'd be interested in your opinion with regard to what he said. Thanks
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:09 AM   #2
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when I cut back on the amount of wood I was using I could tell a hugh differance. The other flavors I was tring for could come out and not be over powered by the smoke.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:12 AM   #3
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I'm going to focus on the word "novice" and agree with him if one is a novice. Heck, I know I did this the first time I used all wood in my first smoker. I didn't know at the time how to keep a small hot fire going and about preheating logs on the firebox so they catch fire quicker. However, I will say he's dead wrong when he says "using all wood will not result in great BBQ." Once you have learned how to manage the fire, you can make fantastic BBQ using wood and only wood.
I can't wait to see what our resident stickburners hafta say about this. This should be interesting.

Is there a difference in flavor when using only wood as opposed to only charcoal and chunks? Certainly. Just like there is a difference when using charcoal and chunks vs. gas and chips. Really just comes down to a personal preference. But it can all be great Q.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:18 AM   #4
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It also depends on what and/or how you are smoking.

Smoking meats is more about the relationship you have with the piece of equipment and the meat (maybe I should get out more).

I agree the smoke is an ingredient. But in larger equipment you have more volume for the smoke to dissipate. You can control the heat and the amount of smoke you get much easier in larger equipment using only wood.

In smaller smokers the smoke is dense. You have little to no ability to control the amount of smoke with an all wood burn.

So the answer (from my opinion); Depends on what you are cooking and/or what you are cooking on.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:23 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BobBrisket View Post
I'm going to focus on the word "novice" and agree with him if one is a novice. Heck, I know I did this the first time I used all wood in my first smoker. I didn't know at the time how to keep a small hot fire going and about preheating logs on the firebox so they catch fire quicker. However, I will say he's dead wrong when he says "using all wood will not result in great BBQ." Once you have learned how to manage the fire, you can make fantastic BBQ using wood and only wood.
I can't wait to see what our resident stickburners hafta say about this. This should be interesting.

Is there a difference in flavor when using only wood as opposed to only charcoal and chunks? Certainly. Just like there is a difference when using charcoal and chunks vs. gas and chips. Really just comes down to a personal preference. But it can all be great Q.
I completely agree. I am not a stickburner but I sure have had some of the best que in my life from guys who burn nothing but wood. Where I'm from doing what I do which is use charcoal with chunks for smoke is weird to most old timers. Pretty much everyone who que's seriously are all stickburners. I agree with the "novice" part as well.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:23 AM   #6
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Tru dat, Bob! "novice"

This is why we achieve "Sweet Blue."

Addiionally, It also depends on the age of your wood in terms of it being seasoned.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:31 AM   #7
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I read that as when the wood immolates itself and it becomes charcoal. Not to start with a premade charcoal.

A cold wood fire is smokey and nasty.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:39 AM   #8
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I am with Goose, I think the statement in the book is easy to miusread. I take it to mean do not cook over a hot wood fire that has not burned down to coals.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 11:46 AM   #9
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I think novice is the key word there. If you know what you are doing, I don't believe his statement is valid.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:04 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NRA4Life View Post
I think novice is the key word there. If you know what you are doing, I don't believe his statement is valid.
I agree, novice is the key here. 'cause, if you stay "sweet blue" you get
the smoke flavor but not the creosote. That said, in my personal opinion
of what I prefer, I think you can over-smoke babyback ribs even with
nothing but sweet blue. As such, I foil mine (shameful, I know) after
about 1:45.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:07 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landarc View Post
I am with Goose, I think the statement in the book is easy to miusread. I take it to mean do not cook over a hot wood fire that has not burned down to coals.
See for yourself it's on page 298. It's not ambiguous.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:08 PM   #12
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Yeah it seems like he could have set the stage by explaining that while some types of cookers do work well using wood as the exculsive fuel, other cookers that a novice might begin expirementing with will fare better with a primarily charcoal heat source supplimented with wood for smoke... I'd say it's prolly a case of the editor over simplifying.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lake Dogs View Post
I agree, novice is the key here. 'cause, if you stay "sweet blue" you get
the smoke flavor but not the creosote. That said, in my personal opinion
of what I prefer, I think you can over-smoke babyback ribs even with
nothing but sweet blue. As such, I foil mine (shameful, I know) after
about 1:45.
Nothing shameful bout that. All comes down to making Q that you like. Ain't nothing wrong with that.
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:12 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MemphisQ View Post
Smoking meats is more about the relationship you have with the piece of equipment and the meat (maybe I should get out more).

its ok, your among friends
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Unread 12-03-2009, 12:18 PM   #15
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Hmmm

this is post #15 in this thread.

i agree with 2 thu 14........ (welll, lake dog... if you think your ribs are too smokey for your taste, cook once with all wood and cook slightly hotter than usual. See if that makes it closer to your liking.)

I love this line
Quote:
People who get all of their heat directly from wood will oversmoke their meat.
ok.... Trig, Hart, Mixon, Stone.... shame on you guys... your oversmoking your meat.. Mr Mills said so.
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