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First cook help!

Just talked with Ben, low and behold my cooker is ready for shipping Very Happy .

I ordered the 36" patio original.

I have smoked fresh caught salmon and trout on my old upright $19 Brinkmen charcoal smoker for years with a few pork and beef roasts and a brisket or 2 thrown in with varying success. (The fish always came out great)!  

My question to all the Guru's out here is;

For a novice first time off-set wood burning smoker user like myself, what would be a good piece or cut of meat to learn how to use and control my new Lang?  

I need to setup shipping yet and have to wait till some of this snow melts and temps get above 0 before I can even think about seasoning it.
Hoping for a January thaw!

Thanks for any thoughts and/or suggestions!
Eddie Z

Season your smoker first. Invest in a few bbq thermometers. Do a dry run without anything in there to get use to using an offset smoker You can start with cheap meats like a whole chicken or a pork shoulder. Move onto more expensive cuts of meat as you get the hang of how the temperature controls. The hotter you cook the bigger temperature differential you'll have across your smoker. Good luck!!!!

I have access to a load of oak for the seasoning along with some cherry and apple.

I do need to invest in a few GOOD thermometers (I have a couple cheap digitals I don't trust). I have read about some here on other posts.

So I was thinking about trying a turkey since I have a gift certificate from work I haven't used yet. Would that be a good choice?

Buy the turkey and keep it in the freezer for a while, do a couple pork butts for the first time, they are very forgiving, turkey not so much. focus on temp management.

Thanks animal I think that is what I was trying to get at, something easy and forgiving for a first time cook.

Pork is always good and with the price of meat these days I don't want to screw an expensive piece of meat and I'll keep the turkey for later.

You got it, I would build a fire and get the cooker hot and over 275 for at least a half hour, let all that metal heat up and then let the temp come down, close the pinwheel damper on the back side of the firebox all the way and open the front one about 1/3 to 1/2 and it will just cruse along.

Thanks Eddie Z and Animal for the info. I'll be rereading the rest of the posts and watching the videos before my smoker arrives for the 4th or 5th time.

I'm getting psyched now for my delivery!

First cook

I got my 36" patio on Sat, I seasoned it on Tuesday and smoked a pork shoulder today. I was having alittle trouble holding temp. I also used a internal thermometer and noticed it was about 20* hotter than the lang  thermometer, anyone else out there seem to have the same issues? Any sugestions, thanks in advance.

Rickij I am still on a learning curve as well but I find holding temp is pretty easy even with the cold and wind here.

I had noticed as the temp would start to drop there was almost no coals left and had to add several pieces of wood to get it back up to temp. causing way to much smoke.

Now I use one or two bigger sized wedges at the start, this helps hold a better coal base and then I add the coke can size pieces during the rest of the cook as needed.

Make sure your wood is well seasoned and preheating on top of the fire box helps warm and dry the wood, and vent control is also key.

As far as the thermometer a few posts here do say the lang it fairly accurate at the lower temps 200-275 range but starts to go off at the higher temps.

So make sure you have a good digital thermometer. I followed the advise here on the posts and bought a Maverick Model# ET-733.

Hope this helps some and Grats on your new smoker. Forum Index -> Ask for tips on cooking
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