A great thing happened the other day. I was in Cedar Key in Fred, my camper van. I saw a beautiful smoker out on the curb, waiting for the trash man or some lucky soul with great taste to pick it up. So I did!
My friend Kevin said he'd like it, so I dropped it off yesterday. I sent him the following instructions:
Here's how to use the smoker in one easy lesson: fill the bottom up with charcoal. Fill the other container with water. Once the coals are hot, put some things you want to smoke and cook on the grill. It takes about 4-5 hours or more to smoke a bunch of meat. Soak some wood chips or just toss in dry chunks of aromatic wood. It's as good as it gets. That's it. Any other advice, books, etc is just overkill. They say all you need is a hole in the ground to make a smoker. One of these baby's is much easier to use. I've been doing it since I was a kid. You can buy a 10 lb bag of your favorite chicken pieces at Ward's (or most grocers) for ~$5. How about that! I use Stubb's BBQ sauce. You'll want to season the meat a little somehow, either with sauce or a rub. Like I said, it'll drive the neighbors crazy. I usually put a piece in a brown paper bag like they did in the old days and give it to the neighbors I like best around dinner time. I like smoking whole fryers. So, I give a fryer to my neighbors. It becomes legendary. You become known as a real Southerner. A good old boy. It'll be your trademark. I have a couple of secret recipes. I put a slice of grapefruit in the chicken cavity, since there's a tree in our yard, and a slice of onion. I put some onion in the water, too so it combines with the steam the water makes as it heats up. That's totally an afterthought. All you need is charcoal, a few chunks of mesquite or hickory, or oak, pecan, etc, and some good meat to smoke. Sausage cooks a lot faster. Brisket is frippin fantastic. Boston butt is also great. Ribs are mouth watering when they're smoked, even chicken liver, which I put in a cradle made out of aluminum foil. You can smoke salmon, trout, redfish, any meaty fish. Grouper! There's hardly anything I like better than spending a day at home with the smoker slowly cooking and filling the neighborhood air with that unmistakable aroma.