The offset barbeque smoker is the most popular type of smoker. It generates continuous heat, which is what smoking meat is all about. The slow cooking at low temperatures allows for the meat to be tender and for the flavors and the smoke to fully penetrate to the inside.
The best offset smokers are designed so that the smoke and heat travel easily around the meat, and the temperature remains consistent. The offset smoker is the most expensive so unless you have smoked meat before and know that you absolutely love the smoky flavor, you would probably be wise to experiment on a less sophisticated model.
In a barbecue form of cooking, a basic cooking device used is a smoker. The barbecue involves slow and Low cooking temperature and infusion of smoke. Smokers have main two parts, a cooking chamber and a firebox or source of heat. There is a means for controlling the smoke and heat in the smoker. When the source of heat or firebox is at an offset from the cooking chamber, in a smoker it is called offset smoker.
Offsets smokers are very popular in the market, and they are available in the varied price ranges. If you are participating in competitions you will sure go for expensive 0ffset smokers or EOS like Horizon Offset Smokers. If you are a beginner in barbecue or on the budget you may prefer to go with cheap offset smokers or COS like Char-Broil Offset smokers.
One must understand the difference between COS and EOS before deciding which one to purchase. The main difference that will affect food quality is material and workmanship. The EOS is made up of thicker steel. The use of thick steel helps to make the firebox more efficient as energy from the coal is retained within the firebox due to the thickness of the material. In the cooking chamber, the thickness of steel used helps in keeping the chamber hot for a longer time and in radiating heat back to the food being cooked. Some EOS also use a convection system for even distribution of heat and smoke within the food chamber. The welding in EOS is also stronger and tighter and lids sealing is better quality. This increases the overall efficiency of EOS, and also gives better food quality.
COS may leak smoke out allowing oxygen to get in. This makes temperature control very difficult. Also, the temperature differences can be observed between different sides of the cooking chambers. By learning a few tricks and making some modifications you can prepare pretty good food even with COS.
Some of the popular COS are
- Char-Broil American Gourmet
- Brinkman Smoke n Pit Professional
- Char-Griller Smokin Pro
- Brinkmann Pitmaster
- Char-Broil Silver Smoker.
Some techniques for cooking good foods in Offset smokers are worth having a look:
- As wood fire is difficult to manage, particularly in COS, it is always advisable to use coal as fuel.
- Before keeping meat into the cooking chamber, pre-heat the chamber up to the required temperature.
- When the temperature starts declining because of coal fading, add fully lit coal from the chimney.
- Monitor temperature at both sides of the cooking chamber using good thermometers.
- The opening lid of either a firebox or cooking chamber will disturb the balance between temperature and humidity, so keep the lid closed.
- Halfway cooking it is necessary to rotate the milk within the cooking chamber.
If you have purchased a cheap offset smoker, you can think of the following modifications to make it work better for you.
- Add a convection plate or a deflector or a duct.
- Install a good quality thermometer on two sides of the cooking chamber.
- Extend chimney of your offset smoker downward.
- Plug any leakage from any of the lids.
- For better heat utilization drape cooking chamber with a foil insulation blanket.
With this modification and techniques, you can have good food cooked even with Cheap offset smokers.
Understanding your new Offset Smoker can be the key to great tasting BBQ. So find the perfect one for you today, and let the good times start as soon as possible.