Saturday, November 14, 2020

 Been awhile folks, but with a big "F you" to Covid-19 and '19 and '20 in general, I'm coming to you today as I smoke the last of the 1/8 of a cow I received last winter. Let's hope that this will end the madness. I'm not terribly optimistic, as it looks like the Covid has some more ruckus to impart this winter. Please do your part by staying home, wearing a mask when it is necessary to go out, and getting the vaccine when available!

Now, on to the smokin'. A couple months ago I smoked a 13-lb brisket with a very cold start to the day at 6:30, much like today. Since you can't properly split the brisket of a quarter, our good friends, Doug and Michelle Roediger (and raisers of the cow), agreed to let me take the brisket while promising a dinner invite when I got up the nerve to give it a smoke.

My first attempt at smoking meat was to be the most imposing, intimidating piece of meat. I had heard horror stories, but was definitely up for the challenge, but only after watching some videos from The Dawgfatha on YouTube. I must say that they were very helpful and his delivery in these videos is very straight-forward and informative.

I was able to get through the stall and then wrapped in butcher paper to speed up the process. I ended up with about a 2-hour rest and we paired with some wonderful beans that my wife, Tonya, whipped up and a salad the Roedigers brought. I was pretty happy with the way it turned out and everyone agreed that it was pretty damn tasty.

I was happy that I didn't screw it up, but mostly just felt a sense of relief and accomplishment, knowing that MY DAD WOULD HAVE BEEN PROUD!

It has been a tough month, all the way around for us, as we lost our 20-year-old nephew to a motor vehicle accident, our friend's Mesothelioma diagnosis took a negative turn, and my Mom celebrated her 78th birthday with a heart empty from Covid-19 isolation and the continued absence of her long-loved partner.

On a positive note, our son finished off a successful soccer season, turned 16, and started his job at LaGrande Pizza. Additionally, my wife celebrated another birthday and has managed to stay healthy, despite increased exposure to coronavirus at the hospital where she works. Most importantly, she managed to survive another year with this guy... She's pretty low-maintenance and I can keep her pretty content with the occasional thoughtful gift and some periodic above-average meals.

On Thursday morning, I took my mom donuts for her birthday and then crockpotted some homemade chili (don't tell him, but it's better than my Dad's!) and took that to my mom and my friend that is battling cancer. Today, I'm smoking short ribs and my wife is preparing potato soup to go with it. I'm starting to realize the same passion my dad had for comforting people with food. While I will likely never get to his level, I'm going to continue to give it a good try.


-Smokin' J

Saturday, August 10, 2019

More Smokin', still no Meat

My boss inspired me to do some more smoking today.  He allegedly smoked a pork butt for a soccer party for his son yesterday.  Rumor has it, however, that he just threw some liquid smoke and ketchup on some chopped up bologna, though, and called it "pulled pork".

We're also attending soccer parties today, as I attempt to show Gavin "what's what" on the pitch today during our annual alumni games... I thought if there was any year that I could take him, it would be his Freshman year, but I'm afraid he may have already surpassed his old man in speed (maybe not quite in skill yet)

I smoked the ever-popular cajun crackers on my dad's Traeger this morning and I'm sure they'll be a hit tonight.

The second picture is a meal I cooked for mom and family two Wednesdays ago. My wife cooked spaghetti and I grilled Italian chicken on my Blackstone...throw in some garlic knots and it was a pretty decent meal from this average cook.  Just warming up, more to come soon.


- Smokin' J

Sunday, July 28, 2019

To honor my father, I smoked cajun crackers and pistachios for a 'celebration of life' after his memorial service yesterday. I hate that I didn't get pictures, but I didn't get the idea to mimic one of his posts until this morning.

As many of you know, these simple smokes are a huge hit with all friends and family.  I'm going to try my best to get more adventurous and add meats, etc. to my smoking repertoire. 

While I will never be close to as good as my dad, I want to give it a good shot to carry on his legacy of providing damn-good comfort food on a regular basis.  Stay tuned.

~Smokin' Jason~

Thursday, January 3, 2019

My Traeger & cook area

Below you see my cooking equipment, my Traeger 07E, to the left is a gas cooker w/cast iron skillet & to the right is a fish friar on the cabinet.
Since this photo I have added a Weber Q100 gas grill. Below that you see a photo of me & my faithful companion. Click on any photo to view larger size it opens in a slide viewer with all the photos in the post.

My Smokin Deck,I can cook rain or shine.

Set up for winter weather

Summer Kitchen 2015
My new Camp Chef single gas burner, a Weber
 Jumbo Joe that I got last year, a Weber Spirit 
2 burner gas grill and my Traeger pellet smoker 
on the deck

All covered up

Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Let's Talk BBQ, One Great Forum

Let’s Talk BBQ; no matter what you cook on this is one great forum for discussing BBQ and learning about BBQ. Whether you use a grill, smoker, or other type of cooker, using gas, wood, charcoal, or electric for fuel there is a place for you there.

Their rules are pretty simple; just treat others the way you want to be treated. Leave your ego at home and have fun learning and discussing cooking and food in a family way.

Most members are from the USA but they are slowly getting some international members. I know of two from Australia and one each from Germany and S. Africa. There may be some from England. I like this since we can learn about other recipes and ways to do BBQ than in our own country.

The forum is laid out well; there are different sections for each style cooker, a recipe section, a general section, a place for sausage making and a place for other hobbies. There are a lot of knowledgeable members there now.

If you are interested in Sous Vide cooking there is a section on it with some knowledgeable members using the method.

I do most all my BBQ on my Traeger wood pellet smoker; but can adapt most recipes from other types of cookers. I use it year around and do most all of the cooking for my wife and I.

So; if you want to talk BBQ get over there sign up and join in the fun of cooking and eating some good BBQ.

Friday, March 2, 2018


Besides being an extra cold winter it was not good
for me. My 95 yr. old Mother had to go toi the
nursing home on Labor Day last year. Just before
Thanksgiving I had to put my dog down, he was
about 15. and my constant companion.

My Mom turned 96 Nov, 29 2017 and passed
away Jan 27 2018, We laid her to rest Feb 01
beside Dad.

I had not cooked on my smoker and was hungry
for some good BBQ. Jan 26 it was up to 50 deg..
so I did some BBRibs. I rubbed on some mustard
and my favorite rub, Galena St. Chicken & rib rub.
They set in the fridge about 5 hrs.

I used a 2-2-1 cook that seems to work best for me.
I did them on smoke for 2 hours at 250 deg. grill
level, wrapped in red butcher paper for two hours
with some BBQ sauce. Unwrapped and went to
260 deg. to set the sauce.for an hour. Tasted great.

Our sides was a baked potato and some Brussles

My supper

Thursday, February 15, 2018


I saw using caul fat before but forgot about it. Some
call it lace fat. I saw the recipe for sausage patties
wrapped in it that sounded good.. You can see You
tube videos, just search on crepinettes.

You can season the sausage patties about any way
you want. The one I used with dried apricots and
pistachio nuts sounded good to me. If I make
some again will try peppers & onions.

We had potato cakes and applesauce with them.It
said the cauol fat only lasts a few days in the
fridge but freezes well. I think it would be good to
wrap pork loin or tenderloins with it.

Patties made & wrapped

Making the patties

Frying them

My supper

Good taste