Thu, May 11, 2006
I recently heard about a new grilling gadget that turns your 22″ Weber Kettle, arguable the most popular charcoal grill around, into a extra large water smoker. The Smokenator 1000 mounts inside the grill providing a pan for water and heat shield that provides the indirect heat for smoking.
A water smoker is the ideal cooker for slow cooking lean meats like chicken and and turkey. Indirect heat lowers the temperature, extending the cooking time, while a water pan provide a nice moist cooking environment. That means no basting is necessary. But not everyone is serious enough to have multiple grills and pits and smokers laying around, especially since most people tend to grill more frequently then barbecue. That’s where this gadget comes in.
The difference between a water smoker and a charcoal grill comes down to two things. Heat and moisture. The Smokenator 1000 is a cleverly designed stainless steel insert that snaps into your existing grill, effectively providing you with a setup that looks like it will work well for smoking.
The coals are placed under the water pan, behind the heat shield. (See the instructions on their website for a diagram. The food then rests on the grill’s lower grate.
The manufacturer claims that beyond the convenience of combining the functions of a grill and a smoker in a single piece of equipment, there are also a number of other advantages including higher humidity, steadier cooking temperature, and easier cleanup.
If you’ve ever wanted to try your hand at smoking a turkey, a couple of chickens, or maybe a brisket, but don’t need a second grill hanging around this contraption is worth a look.
I received a sample from the manufacturer, and in the next couple of weeks I’ll be putting it through its paces. I’ll fill you in on what I learn, and see how this compares to my Brinkman “bullet” style water smoker.