07-19-2017, 10:28 AM
#1
  • bullgoose
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  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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What woods do you prefer for smoking meats? I have been using apple wood so far for pork and have had really good results. What other woods should I consider for pork? What would you suggest for other meats? Do you have a secret source?

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 07-19-2017, 10:36 AM
#2
  • Sully
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  • Cedar Park, Texas
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Apple wood is good, I've used cherry and it was also good.  I use oak and mesquite the most. 

I've read that Mesquite can be overpowering, bitter, acrid, and very aggressive.  I've never had a problem with it, I'm careful with how many chunks I add to my coals.  I also think that if the mesquite is smoldering instead of burning that it contributes to the flavor problems.  With Oak I need to add more chunks to get the smoke flavor I'm after.  

When smoking on my BGE I've never soaked my wood chunks in water either, I don't know if that makes a difference or not.  I have soaked wood chips when I was BBQ'ing and trying to impart some smoke flavor.

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 07-19-2017, 10:40 AM
#3
  • bullgoose
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  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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I just ordered some peach wood chunks and pecan wood chunks from a place called Fruita Wood on a tip from a friend.  I could not pass up free shipping on 20 pounds of wood.

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 07-19-2017, 11:00 AM
#4
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(07-19-2017, 10:36 AM)Sully Wrote: When smoking on my BGE I've never soaked my wood chunks in water either, I don't know if that makes a difference or not.  I have soaked wood chips when I was BBQ'ing and trying to impart some smoke flavor.
Same here, Shawn - I haven't noticed a difference though many swear by soaking.
(07-19-2017, 10:40 AM)bullgoose Wrote: I just ordered some peach wood chunks and pecan wood chunks from a place called Fruita Wood on a tip from a friend.  I could not pass up free shipping on 20 pounds of wood.
Don't blame ya, Phil!  Might have to check it out myself.

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 07-19-2017, 11:57 AM
#5
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You got the main ones covered it seems.  Peach, cherry and apple all go well with pork.

I'm not a fan of any of the fruit woods on beef, usually stick to some sort of oak (if I use anything).  I never use Mesquite on anything (for reasons Sully pointed out above).

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 07-19-2017, 01:38 PM
#6
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Boy, I'm glad I joined this shaving forum because I am sure learning alot about smoking meat!  I think I am in the right place...  Smile

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 07-19-2017, 02:48 PM
#7
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(07-19-2017, 10:40 AM)bullgoose Wrote: I just ordered some peach wood chunks and pecan wood chunks from a place called Fruita Wood on a tip from a friend.  I could not pass up free shipping on 20 pounds of wood.

I got a bunch of peach from them and I like it a lot.  Apple is still my favorite with pork, but the peach is nice. 

I also like Cherry, Pecan, Beech, Maple, and oak.  I had to take down some tree branches so I have some Pear curing now.

With smoke, I find that less is more for me.  Enjoy.

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 07-19-2017, 03:59 PM
#8
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My palate tells me that cherry is too sweet for pork. But on beef it's fantastic. For me, maple and nut woods work great on pork. Apple works great on anything, it's not too sweet or strong.

Basically, hit the wood in question with a torch and see how the smoke works on your nose. If it's good there it'll be good for smoking. Steer clear of obviously bad woods ( poison sumac, etc', and fungus killed elm)

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 07-20-2017, 07:23 AM
#9
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I like Pecan on pork. Cherry for beef. Oak is good for everything I think and I have a ton of it. I can get apple wood locally too but I haven't tried it yet.

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 07-20-2017, 09:09 AM
#10
  • bullgoose
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  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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(07-19-2017, 02:48 PM)PanChango Wrote:
(07-19-2017, 10:40 AM)bullgoose Wrote: I just ordered some peach wood chunks and pecan wood chunks from a place called Fruita Wood on a tip from a friend.  I could not pass up free shipping on 20 pounds of wood.

I got a bunch of peach from them and I like it a lot.  Apple is still my favorite with pork, but the peach is nice. 

I also like Cherry, Pecan, Beech, Maple, and oak.  I had to take down some tree branches so I have some Pear curing now.

With smoke, I find that less is more for me.  Enjoy.

(07-19-2017, 03:59 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: My palate tells me that cherry is too sweet for pork. But on beef it's fantastic. For me, maple and nut woods work great on pork. Apple works great on anything, it's not too sweet or strong.

Basically, hit the wood in question with a torch and see how the smoke works on your nose. If it's good there it'll be good for smoking. Steer clear of obviously bad woods ( poison sumac, etc', and fungus killed elm)

(07-20-2017, 07:23 AM)guildx500 Wrote: I like Pecan on pork. Cherry for beef. Oak is good for everything I think and I have a ton of it. I can get apple wood locally too but I haven't tried it yet.


It looks like I'll have to pick up some cherry wood eventually for Beef Ribs.  Thanks for the tips guys.

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 07-20-2017, 12:21 PM
#11
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Cherry smoked low and slow short ribs are my fav' meal on the planet. But they need to be meaty. I'd buy a 3 shortrib slab that weighed near 7#; very meaty. I've seen those that had just enough meat to barely interest a dog as a chewy toy. You don't want those. Keep the 3 rib slab together for my method. Lesser ribs (<7# for a slab) will change my method below. Cut them apart after cooking.

I very generously marinate mine in a mix of worchestershire sauce, hot paprika, blk pepper, and gran' garlic, it should be the consistency of a loose pancake batter. They can marinate for a day or 2 weeks, I have a refrigerator that hovers near 32°F for BBQ, if you don't have that then marinate for a shorter time than 2 weeks. Don't rinse them off, just pull them out of the bag and trash the marinade. Then 250° for 3 hours or so, indirect heat, lotsa cherry wood, maybe 3-5 chunks as big as a fist, bone side down on the grates. I like the fat in my shortribs to be liquified and the meat rare, you're looking for an internal of 130-135°ish. Pick them up like corn on the cob and get all caveman on them. Knife and fork? Fuggedaboudit! Have plenty of napkins. It's just heaven on a plate. I'm salivating at the thought and have been as I wrote this.

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 07-20-2017, 12:30 PM
#12
  • bullgoose
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  • Redondo Beach, California, U.S.A
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Thanks for the tip Brian! I am definitely going to try your recipe and method soon.

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 07-20-2017, 02:01 PM
#13
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(07-20-2017, 12:30 PM)bullgoose Wrote: Thanks for the tip Brian! I am definitely going to try your recipe and method soon.

Just be advised... if they aren't meaty it won't work. Remember the weight required. I wasn't exaggerating.

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 07-20-2017, 04:11 PM
#14
  • bullgoose
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(07-20-2017, 02:01 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote:
(07-20-2017, 12:30 PM)bullgoose Wrote: Thanks for the tip Brian! I am definitely going to try your recipe and method soon.

Just be advised... if they aren't meaty it won't work. Remember the weight required. I wasn't exaggerating.

Meaty Beef Ribs have been purchased! I'll start the marinade this evening. They weigh in at about 7.6 lbs

I made a new discovery today. We have a Costco Business Center (business membership required) that caters to restaurants. There was a walk in meat locker will all kinds of great meat. Best yet...there was no line.

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 07-20-2017, 08:01 PM
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I wish I had one of those!

When you do poultry (not if) add no wood for smoke. Poultry is a sponge for smoke and it extremely quickly gets too far out of control and becomes inedible.

FWIW, a decade or more ago we had a meat store 20 miles away with the best short ribs. They, for some reason went out of business. 2 weeks ago I was driving through a section of town I rarely drive through and saw a sign that grabbed my attention. So I turned around and stopped in, asked if they had previously been in blah blah town and got an affirmative. I'm back in business!

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 07-20-2017, 08:10 PM
#16
  • bullgoose
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(07-20-2017, 08:01 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: I wish I had one of those!

When you do poultry (not if) add no wood for smoke. Poultry is a sponge for smoke and it extremely quickly gets too far out of control and becomes inedible.

FWIW, a decade or more ago we had a meat store 20 miles away with the best short ribs. They, for some reason went out of business. 2 weeks ago I was driving through a section of town I rarely drive through and saw a sign that grabbed my attention. So I turned around and stopped in, asked if they had previously been in blah blah town and got an affirmative. I'm back in business!

Thank you for the tip Brian. I'll make sure not to add any wood for poultry.

Great news about finding your former meat store. Did you pick up any ribs?

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 07-21-2017, 08:40 AM
#17
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Phil-  keep us updated on this cook. I want to see the results. Adding this to my list for future cooks!

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 07-21-2017, 02:16 PM
#18
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FWIW, we were at the butcher we buy from and he had whole packer briskets for $4/lb. That's why I haven't been doing any L&S brisket. I'd rather have steak for a bit more per lb.

I'm just not going to pay $4/lb for brisket.

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 07-21-2017, 02:20 PM
#19
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My local Costco carries a lot of prime grade beef. I smoked a prime brisket from there on the 4th that was sublime. I've cooked those ducks several times too.

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 07-21-2017, 05:10 PM
#20
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(07-20-2017, 08:10 PM)bullgoose Wrote:
(07-20-2017, 08:01 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: I wish I had one of those!

When you do poultry (not if) add no wood for smoke. Poultry is a sponge for smoke and it extremely quickly gets too far out of control and becomes inedible.

FWIW, a decade or more ago we had a meat store 20 miles away with the best short ribs. They, for some reason went out of business. 2 weeks ago I was driving through a section of town I rarely drive through and saw a sign that grabbed my attention. So I turned around and stopped in, asked if they had previously been in blah blah town and got an affirmative. I'm back in business!

Thank you for the tip Brian. I'll make sure not to add any wood for poultry.

Great news about finding your former meat store. Did you pick up any ribs?

Brian is right on the money. It is really easy to over smoke poultry. 

Every so often, I like a chunk of cherry with a whole chicken or turkey.  It gives it a really nice dark color.

Enjoy your BGE.

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