Monday, November 7, 2011


My favorite outdoor cooking appliance is my Weber "Performer" Kettle BBQ. I cook an average of two meals a week on this rig and I am on a quest to do everything I cook outdoors on the Weber, too include "low and slow" smoke BBQ as well as Rotisserie Coooking with my AuSpit setup.

I was fairly successful with a simple, "indirect heat" cooking procedure in the Weber on a previous batch of Pork Back Ribs but, i was not completely satisfied with the outcome. Recently, I found the Smokenator 1000 addition  for the Weber and ordered the deal pronto.

The Smokenator insert is installed to the left.
The unit arrived mid last week and once unpacked, it is clearly and very simple, yet very efficient design. This last Saturday, I picked up 3 slabs of the same Pork ribs and set to it.

The install takes a whole ten seconds. It's that easy. About the only complex aspect of the deal is that the propane, charcoal lighter my Weber Performer is offset a few inches from where the Smokenator would reside. I will look to modify the lighter to change this. The unit does come with important instructions. read them, to clearly understand what to expect in the cooking pricess.

I transfered the coals to the Smokenator partition, added cherry wood chunks and filled the water tray. I added the ribs and set my feet up while I monitored the Smokenator/Weber with the aid of a good amount of beer.

As the instructions stated, the dome temp in the Weber was extremely well regulated at @ 220-250 degrees. Sure, I had to add more wood chunks and a few more charcoals but, that was really minimal over this 3 hours of this part of the cooking process.

About 2 hours into the process
 As you can see, I did move the ribs around on the grilles whenever I opened the lid to add wood chunks for smoke or one or two briquettes for heat. Again, the was really a lot less work than I thought it would be - certainly a lot less than the old method of indirect heat before the addition of the Smokenator.

At hour three, I pulled the ribs about 80% done as this was more than enough smoke. The rest of the process would be in my Kitchen Oven in foil, with added flavor steps.

Ready to be cut up and served.

Sorry for the messy plate, this was my 3rd helping!
The outcome was fantastic. These were likely the best batch of Back Ribs I have ever cooked. The kids gobbled them up and stated the same.  To make them perfect, I would have liked the meat to release from the rib bones a bit easier. I have a few ideas on how to make that happen in the next batch.

Details on the recipe:
  1. 3 Racks of Pork Back Ribs
  2. Remove membrane from back of ribs.
  3. Clean and dry ribs
  4. Dust with Dizzy Pig, "Dizzy Dust" rub.
  5. Add other favorite flavors and sparingly sparingly. Avoid excess salt.
  6. Let stand in your fridge for an hour or so.
  7. Prepare Smoker to reach cooking chamber temp of 225-250 degrees.
  8. Smoke Ribs for @ 3 hours or until about 90% done as measured by the "Bend Test".
  9. Place ribs in foil and add your favorite sauce sparingly. Sprinkle with brown sugar and any other spice that you like. I add cumin at this stage. Wrap them fairly tight.
  10. Place the foil wrapped ribs in the pre-heated, 250 degree oven for @ 1 hr. Test again with the bend test. Pull when finished.
  11. Tent the foil a bit and let the ribs rest in the foil for about 20 minutes.
  12. Cut up and serve.

The Smokenator 1000, manufacturer's website is HERE.


You might think that the Smokenator/Weber combo with it's 5-6 hour cooktime by design will not be ample for large cuts of meat, such as Brisket or Pork Shoulder which often are in heat for 10-12 hours..  Not so! Remember, care is need to not provide too much smoke. With that, the Smokenator/Weber combo can be the sole appliance for the smoking part of the process, moving the big cuts to the Oven in the same foil process as mentioned above.

1 comment:

  1. Looks pretty good to me.... the bones tell the story