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Old 08-26-2008, 01:10 AM   #11
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Being from Alaska,I usually use Diamond Willow.
But sometimes I grow a wild one and toss on some mesquite and hickory in addition, like I did with my last big hunk of venison.
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Old 08-26-2008, 05:00 AM   #12
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All of this is great! My problem is where to get all this wood. Drama Queen spoke of soaking Apple in Apple juice for fish. Sounded yum.
That opens up a whole sub category here. What wood and how can the process be improved by what you smoke it in.

AC
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Old 08-26-2008, 07:49 AM   #13
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I did Mesquite on a turkey saturday.... not smoked turkey just added chips to indirect heat on the grill.
Pretty good!
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:35 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by bowlingshirt View Post
That's a handy link, however, I have heard that the subtle differences in the flavors of the wood won't come through on the food unless you smoke for several hours.
Steve Raichlin says that after a couple of hours the meat isn't absorbing any more smoke. He was talking about Ribs at the time. So if I do a 3-2-1 method after the first couple of hours I stop adding wood chunks.

That being said, I am a firm believer in non soaked wood chunks over soaked wood chips. Was talking to a vendor at a local grill shop who told me a story about some guy that hits the Memphis BBQ cookoff every year. He doesn't soak anything. He said the guy told him, "take a look at the underside of the lid to your grill. I don't want to risk moisture condensing up there and dripping that nasty stuff down on my product." The guy that the store was impressed that he called it his product.

For me, I'm a big fan of the fruit woods. Apple and Cherry mainly. I have some apricot in my wood bin that I haven't tried yet and a cousin that just dropped a peach tree in his yard that was dying. Can't wait to get few pounds of that....

Don't get me wrong. I always have some Hickory on hand as it is the easiest to come by in chunk form and use it from time to time, but Apple is my fave by a long shot...
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Old 12-09-2008, 12:37 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by Adillo303 View Post
All of this is great! My problem is where to get all this wood. Drama Queen spoke of soaking Apple in Apple juice for fish. Sounded yum.
That opens up a whole sub category here. What wood and how can the process be improved by what you smoke it in.

AC

I never soak my wood chunks.

As for where to get it, that's tough. A few Ace Hardware places around here (St. Louis) have chunks of fruit wood. Call the local orchards. Those little branches they turn into mulch would make excellent smoke wood....
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Old 12-14-2008, 10:33 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Adillo303 View Post
All of this is great! My problem is where to get all this wood. Drama Queen spoke of soaking Apple in Apple juice for fish. Sounded yum.
That opens up a whole sub category here. What wood and how can the process be improved by what you smoke it in.

AC
that can be tricky .. local feed supply stores carry them at times ...
true value and taylors do it centers have a good selection ..
a lot of fireplace stores have it to .. you just have to get out
the phone book ..
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Old 12-14-2008, 12:03 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by TheFanatic View Post
Steve Raichlin says that after a couple of hours the meat isn't absorbing any more smoke. He was talking about Ribs at the time.
Going to add my thoughts...

I am a big fan of Raichlin...The meat absorbing smoke time limit does not exist...This is brought up all the time by experts in competitions, dedicated smoking/bbq forums and I actually tried it, so I'm talking from actual experience. I did two racks of ribs, one I smoked for 6 hours straight and the other smoked 3-2-1...During the "two" there was no smoke. The 6 hour ribs tasted smokier for the 3-2-1...

With the soaking or not soaking, solely depends on the cooking device. If it's possible, do not soak. I use an electric smoker which has a coil...If I do not soak, the chips ignite and get a thick dark smoke that doesn't last long...If I soak they will not ignite and there will be a much longer lasting light colored smoke, which is what you want...

While fruit woods bring some unique flavors to the party, my guests and I could never taste a distinct fruit. EG: YOu're taking appleWOOD which doesn't taste like apples to begin with and chemically converting it into a smoke that your food absorbs...Meaning while fruits add some great flavors, they don't taste like the fruit they bear...Again, heard this at other forums and tried it myself...

Hickory is the most familiar tasting wood...With the exception of brisket which uses mequite, the majority of pros use hickory and a combo of oak and/or fruitwood...

My guests and I share an interest in "EXCESS"...We like 100% hickory for dominating smoke flavor and super tender fall off the bone ribs...We are the minority in our likes...
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Old 12-14-2008, 12:17 PM   #18
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I'll blow some smoke here....

I haven't read that meat doesn't absorb any more smoke after a couple hours. I did read that you can't add to the smoke ring after the meat passes 140F, due to some kind of chemical reaction that causes the pink ring at temps below 140F.
Now, I did take this internet knowledge to mean that meat would not pick up any more smokiness after that temp, and that is wrong. I was smoking a pork butt and the smoke had been long gone, but I wanted to put on some ABTs towards the end and add some smoke to them, so I put a small pouch of hickory chips on with them. The butt picked up a strong hickory flavor from these late chips, too much. So yes, you can add smoke at the end, and it certainly affects the bark anyway.
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Old 12-14-2008, 12:46 PM   #19
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Some good info here. I took Raichlin as the word of God and saved some smoke wood after a couple hours of smoking.

I may have to rethink that...

As for fruit woods, I don't expect to taste apple or cherry in my food, I expect a mellow smoke flavor as opposed to an overpowering flavor of say hickory or pecan. I will use hickory but I usually split it with something more mellow as hickory can easily overpower the food if you're not careful....

And I think you will find that the majority of pros use apple for ribs. My dad was talking to the owner of the 17th street grill which is the guy who won the Memphis Rib championship 3 different times. My dad asked what he does to his ribs to win. He said he marinates them in applesauce and smokes them in apple wood.
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Old 12-14-2008, 01:14 PM   #20
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My dad was talking to the owner of the 17th street grill which is the guy who won the Memphis Rib championship 3 different times. My dad asked what he does to his ribs to win. He said he marinates them in applesauce and smokes them in apple wood.
You are correct, his name is mike mills...He uses applewood exclusively...He has said he feels he wins because his meat is very mellow on the smoke...The question is if the judges like a more smokey flavor would he still win?

Again, I said I was the minority on this, but I do like more overpowering smoke than most...

Edit: Other thing I wanted to point out, most other pro's who are award winners as well do not follow in his footsteps and use hickory...
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