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Old 07-12-2016, 04:49 PM   #1
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Question about smoking temperature (safety related)

My sister gave me a Mini Chief smoker she never used. I had some ribs in it a while ago and now they are wrapped on the bbq at 225....anyhoo, I've never used one of these Mini Chiefs and soon discovered that they don't reach a very high temp(around 165) and are really just designed to impart smoke flavor to your meats, cheeses, etc....my question is this, how safe would it be to leave your meat for 2 or 3 hours at that that low temp? As a long time cook, I would be a bit leery, but does the smoke add extra prevention against bacteria build up? I'm wondering if 2 or 3 hours at 165ish is enough time to create dangerous levels of bacteria, or once it gets exposed to 225 or higher for a few more hours, that will take care of any potential problems. Just wondering....

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Old 07-12-2016, 06:10 PM   #2
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That's an interesting question and I'd like to know about that as well. I occasionally will cut a steak into strips and marinate it in mesquite or something similar, then lay it on a rack in the oven (on a cookie sheet) and let it cook for about 45 - 55 minutes at 200. I understand cooking the meat for another 45 minutes to an hour would give me beef jerky, but I've never done that. I was wondering how safe the meat was as well, although I haven't died from this yet.
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Old 07-12-2016, 07:06 PM   #3
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The "danger zone," where microbes reproduce fastest, is between 41 and 140 degrees F. So restaurants can cook foods and then serve, for example, in chafing dishes that maintain the temperature above 140.

But the pork needs to reach 140 or so within a couple of hours in order to kill off the microbes. At a temp of 160, I'm not sure there's any way to know how long that takes, especially in a smoker outside that may lose heat depending on the outside temperature and how well it's insulated. Smoking kills some bacteria but not all. Here's more info on that: Smoking meat

The problem in food safety that people often forget is that the microbes aren't usually what make people sick. As they multiply, they create a toxin as a byproduct of reproduction. That's what makes people sick.

RR - people don't usually die of food poisoning. It's more often an upset stomach with vomiting and diarrhea. There's no such thing as the 24-hour flu Flu is a respiratory illness while food poisoning is gastrointestinal. But cooking beef slices at 200 for an hour is fine. It's a higher temp than Rock is talking about and for less time.
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Old 07-12-2016, 07:08 PM   #4
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Well, I'm going to eat in about 20 minutes, so if you don't hear from me it was nice knowing you all...what a way to go. on my 54th birthday!!!They were good years
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Old 07-12-2016, 07:15 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rocklobster View Post
Well, I'm going to eat in about 20 minutes, so if you don't hear from me it was nice knowing you all...what a way to go. on my 54th birthday!!!They were good years
Nice knowing you, Rock! Happy Birthday!
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Old 07-13-2016, 12:33 AM   #6
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Speaking of pork ribs? How come you don't see true pork baby back ribs at the butcher counter nowadays? You know...ribs with petite bones in them, like in "Lloyd's BBQ Ribs" packages and such. I bought a rack of pork ribs with big bones and could only get 1/3 of them to fit in my electric crock pot.

Are true "baby back pork ribs" young pork loin ribs or what? I bet companies like Lloyd's have a proprietary supplier that gets them petite baby back sized pork ribs. I haven't seen uncooked ones like those for sale in years. Crock pot sized. Bones no thicker than your finger. Now they're as big a round as my thumb, or bigger.
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:08 AM   #7
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Rock, when I smoke andouille sausage, I set up for 180F (basically cold smoking). The sausage goes until the internal temp reaches 150F. With the carry over, they end up around 160F (wrapped). Of course there was cure added to the ground pork and it cures overnight. I also do tasso at the same temp, but it cures for 7 days. I'm not sure about ribs at 165F, guess you'll find out in the next day or two!
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Old 07-13-2016, 07:24 AM   #8
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I'm still here...other than a bit of fog from the birthday beer, everything seems to be ok.....off to work I go..
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Old 07-13-2016, 08:56 AM   #9
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Glad you made it!
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Old 07-13-2016, 11:03 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Caslon View Post
Speaking of pork ribs? How come you don't see true pork baby back ribs at the butcher counter nowadays? You know...ribs with petite bones in them, like in "Lloyd's BBQ Ribs" packages and such. I bought a rack of pork ribs with big bones and could only get 1/3 of them to fit in my electric crock pot.

Are true "baby back pork ribs" young pork loin ribs or what? I bet companies like Lloyd's have a proprietary supplier that gets them petite baby back sized pork ribs. I haven't seen uncooked ones like those for sale in years. Crock pot sized. Bones no thicker than your finger. Now they're as big a round as my thumb, or bigger.
I can get baby backs at any of the 3 grocery stores in town, as well as at the one butcher shop. They are pre-packaged, not cut at the grocery stores, but they are true baby backs. They usually have the three popular styles - baby back, St. Louis, and the full rack of spare ribs. I usually do St. Louis style ribs because they are meatier and juicier.
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