New toy to smoke with

Well, for the last several years I’ve been cooking (grilling/smoking) on a CharBroil Akorn.  I had been using a Weber grill and a dedicated offset smoker prior to that.  I had been wanting to get some exposure to the kamado type cooking experience to see if I liked it and found out that I did.  After about 5 years the Akorn finally gave up the ghost – well, not exactly, the bottom ash pan rusted out – a $39 part to order new.  But there was some other parts that would also need to be replaced and after I totaled them up I could almost buy a new Akorn for what the parts alone would cost.  After talking it over with Tanya, I decided since we decided since we did like the way the Akorn cooked to go “all in” and get a ceramic kamado.  So the search was on.

I looked at The Egg (the green one) and liked what I saw, but then found out that all the “extras” that you needed to cook with were a la carte.  You had to buy the diverter stones, the grills, etc.  I continued looking and found some comments about the Kamado Joe Classic – which is pretty much the same size as the Akorn we had – just a tad smaller.  All reviews that I read on it were really complimentary and one of the big points that most mentioned was that many of the “extras” came with it that you had to buy separately with The Egg.

After reading many reviews and watching some YouTube videos of comparisons I decided that we would get a Kamado Joe Classic II.  I checked Amazon and they had some of the best prices I found on the web so I placed an order.  It came in on 10/05/2017 (Thursday) and Tanya and I horsed it around to the back yard (thing was heavy – almost 300 pounds on the packing crate).  Once we got it set up we decided we’d have some hamburgers for supper. Fired her up and got the temp up to around 350° and on went the burgers.  Also had a chicken breast that was in a dry tomato/basil mix that I put on also.
One thing I noticed was that it did a REALLY good job of keeping a steady temperature.  The burgers were probably some of the better ones I’ve done, meat cooked throughout and still moist.

Friday I put some pork spare ribs on about 9:30am and took them off at 5:00PM after letting them smoke at 225° during that time.  I used cherry wood instead of apple this time.  Everyone that sampled the several racks that I cooked commented on how moist and well flavored they were…. so I guess you can say I’m happy with our purchase so far.

I’ve got a brisket thawing out that I’m going to smoke on Sunday night/Monday and later in the week planning on doing some pork shoulders for pulled pork for the clinic that we go to for medical related issues.

This is shortly after being set up on the patio deck.

And here we are with some lump charcoal (only thing I use now) and wood in place.

All fired up and getting up to temperature.

And with the goodies put on!

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