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*Ceramic* BBQ/Grilling

  • 13-06-2020 8:23am
    #1
    Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 7,193 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Gloomtastic!


    Hi All,

    The BBQ threads on here are proving very popular at the moment so we're going to add a third thread, specifically for those using a ceramic or kamado BBQ.

    The requirements for a successful ceramic cook are different to both charcoal and gas so if you have any questions or wish to share your passion, please do so here.

    Whilst not compulsory, photos of finished cooks are always welcome just for their pure drool value. :cool:

    The normal charcoal grilling thread can be found here

    https://www.boards.ie/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=2055542022


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Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 8,652 ✭✭✭ PlentyOhToole


    Thanks Gloomtastic! for starting this thread. I have a Kamado Joe Jr and absolutely loving it - i'll never by a Weber kettle again - I'm totally sold so if anyone thinking on splashing out this summer on a ceramic BBQ do hop in here if you have questions. What i like the most about my little Kamado is the way it holds a steady low temperature over hours and hours without having to prick and prod it - it just keeps working once i achieve required temperature.

    While Big Green Egg and Kamado Joe are two very popular (but also expensive) brands, there are others out there at varying degrees of quality.

    I see Lidl are about to offer a miniature kamado for 119 euro- by all means go for it but i can tell you that @ 26 cm, it's VERY small - the Kamado Joe Jnr is about 34 cm cooking area and as I have a few other outdoor cooking machines this does me just fine for all my smoking needs- those extra 8cm mean the difference between cooking for 2 and cooking for 4 or indeed, the type of joints and beasts that you'll be able to handle.

    In addition, the Kamado Joe Jnr comes with a heat deflector plate- something the Lidl version and other cheap versions lacks - you'll experience difficulty doing low and slow with the lidl version- high-heat searing is more likely what you'l be using the lidl version for.

    Saying all of that, do take the leap if you think you'll make use of it.

    https://www.lidl.ie/en/p/father-s-day/miniature-kamado-bbq/p43674

    For larger Kamados but a bit cheaper than Kamado Joe or Green Egg which is hugely expensive and I think personally Kamado Joe has a much better cooking arrangement in the big sizes, there's a brand called Berghoff available in Ireland (The Orchard Celbridge also had them) - there are junior versions of these also (around 350) and full size (around 1000)

    https://www.arnotts.ie/electrical/home-appliances/cookers-ovens-hobs/berghoff/ceramic-bbq-oven-large-green/BRIS2415701.html

    A few videos here cooking on the Kamado Joe cooking channel which i've found very good:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y33g-qwXs6c

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PFqzKyiCXIc


  • Moderators, Sports Moderators Posts: 2,108 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Black Sheep


    I've been using a large Big Green Egg for about 7-8 years and it is still going strong.

    Bought it from A Room Outside in Limerick, and paid for for a table to hold it.

    At the time it seemed like an eye-watering amount of money to drop. I'm not sure what it would cost now, but at the time it was over €1000.

    However, I would have to say we have "got the use out of it". That BGE has been going strong in all seasons at least once a week since.

    I am not snobbish about other brands or charcoal BBQs at a lower price point, and I have used / recommended various products from the likes of Weber over the years. But I guess what I like about the large BGE is that you can set it up for a long cook, get it to the right temperature and have a high degree of confidence that it is going to "cruise" through an overnight cook without any problems, if you know what you're doing. I have done very long overnight cooks for large pork shoulders even in rain, falling snow, low outside temperatures etc. and not a bother.

    There are some things to be aware of with BGEs.

    If you run it as hot as it is capable of getting then a common experience is for the gasket to melt, which is alarming. This is an issue if you're getting it up past 500 for pizza or similar... There is a danger zone there if it runs above that. Happily if it does happen you can replace the gasket easily enough, but best avoided.

    In general when you've got the potential to hit such a high temperature the BGE you need to be careful opening and closing it. 'Burping' is essential.

    In terms of accessories, sizing, my view is that a medium or large BGE is worth having as it will comfortably fit large meat joints and you can cook for larger groups if you want to. I think I might consider a medium over a large if I were going again, because the large can be a little inefficient in charcoal terms if you're only grilling a couple of steaks or something, but there are tricks to minimise this as an issue.

    If I were going again I would not buy a table for the BGE second time around. I'd probably just opt for some kind of less space intensive option, maybe a wheeled trestle of some kind with folding arms.

    I replaced the cap and the indirect cooking stone than I got from BGE with after-market accessories. I have a cast iron indirect cooker and an aftermarket stainless steel chimney cap from Smokeware (US brand). Would highly recommend the replacement chimney cap in particular, it doesn't rust and is less fiddly in terms of operating, and also eliminates an issue with rain falling right into the BGE.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,652 ✭✭✭ PlentyOhToole


    Thanks Black Sheep- I think you'll just about get the mini Green Egg for 1000 euro these days- it's more like 1700 euro for your one and that's without any table top. Kamado Joe Classic is about 1550 and and an updated version of that comes in about 2000.
    I find ceramic cooking very efficient in terms of the use of charcoal- so while you fill them right up they just use what they need throughout that particular cook- of course, only use good quality charcoal and no lighter-fluid based fire starters or they will taint the ceramic and thus the food.


  • Registered Users Posts: 780 Kirk Van Houten


    Anyone have any experience of this brand?

    https://mower.ie/categories/charcoal-barbecues-kamados


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,652 ✭✭✭ PlentyOhToole


    Anyone have any experience of this brand?

    https://mower.ie/categories/charcoal-barbecues-kamados

    None- which one were you thinking? Try and do a comparison with Kamado Joe and Berghoff (which they look very similar to)

    Obtaining spare parts in years to come would be my key question before buying along with what the internal cooking set up is arranged (i.e. heat diffuser, adjustable racks, half and half racks etc etc - I think Patton are Dutch and I think Berghoff are Belgium in origin- I don't think you'll go wrong with either but if forking out a decent chunk of change, pay attention to the small internal workings, especially when compared to Kamado Joe, which do things quite well in that department.

    https://berghoffworldwide.com/bgh_en_int/barbecue/charcoal-bbq


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  • Registered Users Posts: 18,741 ✭✭✭✭ Muahahaha


    Was tempted by that Lidl one for a few minutes but its just too small, had it been 35cm I wouldve gone for it.

    Question- what are the brands that arent costing circa 1,000?


  • Registered Users Posts: 780 Kirk Van Houten


    None- which one were you thinking? Try and do a comparison with Kamado Joe and Berghoff (which they look very similar to)

    Obtaining spare parts in years to come would be my key question before buying along with what the internal cooking set up is arranged (i.e. heat diffuser, adjustable racks, half and half racks etc etc - I think Patton are Dutch and I think Berghoff are Belgium in origin- I don't think you'll go wrong with either but if forking out a decent chunk of change, pay attention to the small internal workings, especially when compared to Kamado Joe, which do things quite well in that department.

    https://berghoffworldwide.com/bgh_en_int/barbecue/charcoal-bbq

    Was thinking about the 15 inch one. I have a gas BBQ for doing most of the work but want something to do joints of meat low and slow. Was thinking of the Lidl one but have a feeling it will just be too small.


  • Registered Users Posts: 600 ✭✭✭ dingbat


    I really don't see the point of a Kamado-only thread.

    bbq is bbq.


  • Posts: 0 [Deleted User]


    I don't see the mini kamados on the Aldi site.


  • Registered Users Posts: 780 Kirk Van Houten


    I don't see the mini kamados on the Aldi site.

    Lidl


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  • Registered Users Posts: 180 ✭✭ Smurts


    There was only one left when I got to Lidl at 8am this morning, more popular than I thought!

    Hoping to fashion some sort of deflector based on one of the ideas here:

    https://www.woodsmokeforum.uk/topic/540-aldi-kamado/


  • Registered Users Posts: 180 ✭✭ Smurts


    Really?? Didnt think they would have been as popular, I was going to leave it until after work but happy I went up now!


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,652 ✭✭✭ PlentyOhToole


    Smurts wrote: »
    Really?? Didnt think they would have been as popular, I was going to leave it until after work but happy I went up now!

    It’s pretty much the cheapest out there right now-but very small - a few burgers at a time or a couple of chops- no heat deflector limits use also - but a bargain is a bargain :D


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    Picked one up in lidl at 8 this morning - they were sold out in the first one I went to. Fashioned a heat deflector out of a 20 cm camping frying pan I picked up in homestore for 2.95. Took the handle off, drilled 3 holes in the side and put 60cm screws and bolts on to support it. Would upload a pic but not sure how. Not sure how it's gonna work but have some ribs on now so will see!


  • Registered Users Posts: 6,145 ✭✭✭ positron


    There was a queue at local Lidl this morning and mini Kamados were flying out the door. Got one myself and tried it today. First time lighting charcoal, first time trying bbq'ing actually, so yeah, steep learning curve.

    Mini kamado was pretty straight forward to put together - heavy but very stable on the tripod legs. Charcoal-wise all I could find was a 1 kg bag of Zip instant briquettes. That's about as much charcoal the mini Kamado can fit I think. It took a few attempts to get the charcoals lit - instant it may be, but it certainly wasn't noob-proof. :/

    After 20-30 mins faffing to get it going, it finally stabilized at just under 200 deg C. This was with both top and bottom vents fully open. Decent amount of smoke pouring out too but it was getting late for dinner so I decided to throw the burgers on. Temperature stayed around 200 and got the burgers done - takes 4 burgers at a time, and they tasted great for sure, even kids commented on how nice they were.

    At this stage I closed all the vents to kill the fire. But the temperature shoots up to 250 and stabilizes there (which is probably what I should have done in the first place to cook the burgers). However, an hour later it was still showing over 200 deg C!! Googling suggested that new devices leak air thru the daisy when and that's why the fire is not fully going out. I wrapped some tinfoil around it to try and help, but now nearly two and half later it's still reading 100-150 degrees. Had I known this I would thrown something else in there (roast nuts or something perhaps).

    Looking forward to trying it again, I hope it gets easier with experience - fingers crossed.


  • Registered Users Posts: 825 ✭✭✭ The chan chan man


    positron wrote: »
    There was a queue at local Lidl this morning and mini Kamados were flying out the door. Got one myself and tried it today. First time lighting charcoal, first time trying bbq'ing actually, so yeah, steep learning curve.

    Mini kamado was pretty straight forward to put together - heavy but very stable on the tripod legs. Charcoal-wise all I could find was a 1 kg bag of Zip instant briquettes. That's about as much charcoal the mini Kamado can fit I think. It took a few attempts to get the charcoals lit - instant it may be, but it certainly wasn't noob-proof. :/

    After 20-30 mins faffing to get it going, it finally stabilized at just under 200 deg C. This was with both top and bottom vents fully open. Decent amount of smoke pouring out too but it was getting late for dinner so I decided to throw the burgers on. Temperature stayed around 200 and got the burgers done - takes 4 burgers at a time, and they tasted great for sure, even kids commented on how nice they were.

    At this stage I closed all the vents to kill the fire. But the temperature shoots up to 250 and stabilizes there (which is probably what I should have done in the first place to cook the burgers). However, an hour later it was still showing over 200 deg C!! Googling suggested that new devices leak air thru the daisy when and that's why the fire is not fully going out. I wrapped some tinfoil around it to try and help, but now nearly two and half later it's still reading 100-150 degrees. Had I known this I would thrown something else in there (roast nuts or something perhaps).

    Looking forward to trying it again, I hope it gets easier with experience - fingers crossed.

    Interesting to hear, thanks! I wonder with its small size though how you could use it for anything other than direct grilling? I assume it doesn’t come with a deflector so you always have some form of direct heat?


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    Interesting to hear, thanks! I wonder with its small size though how you could use it for anything other than direct grilling? I assume it doesn’t come with a deflector so you always have some form of direct heat?

    Just finished a 110c 4 hour cook of spare ribs with a home made heat deflector. Best ribs I've ever tasted. I normally just grill burgers/sausages on a kettle. The lidl kamado may be small but it lights fast and sits at temp for hours. Have to say, I love it.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    mossym wrote: »
    not being smart, but realistically how many racks of ribs can you cook on one of those?

    One lying flat. Not sure how many on their side. Like I said - it's small. How many racks of ribs can you fit on a kamado Joe Jr which isn't that much bigger but multiples of the price?


  • Registered Users Posts: 136 ✭✭ stayback


    I got one in Lidl yesterday.. they are small but If you just want to cook a few burgers 2 steaks even some breakfast they are ideal.

    I have a master touch aswell so this is just a spare one..

    Small but very handy is my verdict. Very compact


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    mossym wrote: »
    2 comfortably, 3 if squashed

    i wasn't knocking them, i think they are fantastic for the price. i had been contemplating up till monday getting one given the price as a second unit for searing ( i have a kamado joe classic) but decided to leave it (given there are two other grills here already as well!). I was just curious as to what you could actually fit on one to see how useful it may have been

    Have a chicken that I want to throw in it today, will see how that goes. Ive a kettle I use for anything big. Would love a full size kamado but can't justify the cost right now


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  • Registered Users Posts: 6,145 ✭✭✭ positron


    Mini kamado related discussion here, and some good ideas on DIY / inexpensive heat deflectors etc:
    https://www.woodsmokeforum.uk/topic/1646-lidl-mini-kamado-6th-june-%C2%A379/#comments


  • Registered Users Posts: 243 ✭✭ kieran26


    Anyone have any experience of this brand?

    https://mower.ie/categories/charcoal-barbecues-kamados


    I bought the small one of these off mower.ie a few weeks ago have used it a few times, so far very happy with it, retains the heat very well, doesn't need more than a couple of handfulls of charcoal to keep going for a few hours. Cooked burgers and wings on it and they turned out fantastic, did Beef ribs in in tinfoil for 2.5hrs and then took off tinfoil to baste for 40 mins and they turned out really well also.

    It seems to be really well built, it is on the small side I was supposed to be getting the bigger one but they had none in stock so I opted for the smaller one. It might be worth emailing them to see what they have in stock as my order for the €349 one went through and then they called me to tell me they had none left. Company was very good to deal with.


  • Registered Users Posts: 2,535 ✭✭✭ circular flexing


    Splashed out on a Kamado Joe Classic I recently and I am totally amazed at the versatility of it and how easy it is to control the temperature.

    I can see one things missing from the Lidl version is the flex rack system. The Classic 1 has two half moon shaped grates that can be set at different heights so you can sear a steak on the lower side and then transfer it to the higher side to finish it off. Also the heat deflectors are half moon as well.

    Last week I did pulled pork by dry rubbing a pork shoulder the night before then putting some applewood chunks on the coals and cooking it at ~110C for about 6 hours. I kept an eye on the temp but didn't need to adjust anything and the pork was divine. Would like to try beef brisket next if I can find the cut. Also have a bbq safe pizza stone on the way to try pizza on it too.


  • Registered Users Posts: 180 ✭✭ Smurts


    Scuba_tom wrote: »
    Picked one up in lidl at 8 this morning - they were sold out in the first one I went to. Fashioned a heat deflector out of a 20 cm camping frying pan I picked up in homestore for 2.95. Took the handle off, drilled 3 holes in the side and put 60cm screws and bolts on to support it. Would upload a pic but not sure how. Not sure how it's gonna work but have some ribs on now so will see!

    How did you get on with the ribs using the deflector?


  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 7,193 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Gloomtastic!


    ^ I thanked both posts. :D Brilliant job, you must be delighted, very well done.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8,652 ✭✭✭ PlentyOhToole


    Gorgeous Mossym- taking orders for a Kamado jnr table at all?????? :D it must weigh a considerable amount to ensue the heavy KJ classic stays in place.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    mossym wrote: »
    started it on the grilling thread so finished it there, but will transfer it over here now. table for the Kamado Joe complete.

    IOqS58Wl.jpg

    Looks amazing!


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    Smurts wrote: »
    How did you get on with the ribs using the deflector?

    Yeah great, managed to fit 2 small racks in yesterday with a healthy coating of rub - had them on for 4 hours with a couple of handfuls of charcoal. Cooked a medium chicken on it the other day no probs.

    Schoolboy error with the deflector though, don't buy cheap - the pan I used had a coating of paint or something on it which started to come off. Fixed it by sticking it in the firepit for a couple of hours. I'll get a 20cm cast iron one, should be better.


  • Registered Users Posts: 36 Scuba_tom


    oNYLKiWl.jpg
    aQhjJRxl.jpg


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  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators, Recreation & Hobbies Moderators Posts: 7,193 Mod ✭✭✭✭ Gloomtastic!




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