Welcome to our little slice of paradise! Clear Lake Shores is probably one of the best kept secrets in the entire Bay Area. Yes we are an island. We are surrounded by Clear Lake, Jarbo Bayou and the Lazy Bend canals. Plug this in to Google Maps and you'll see what I mean 29.32' by 95.01' We are about half way between Galveston Island and the city of Houston and located in north Galveston county. I will try to keep us up on all the goings on that we can walk, boat, bike or drive our golf carts to. Very few things pi$$ me off but one of them is wasting my precious time. I'll try not to waste yours. Enjoy. ab

Monday, June 27, 2016

National Sunglasses Day is here already.

Slow calendar day. The birthday boy (me) got a new toy for Fathers Day/BD. I have been wrasslin' with a few ideas for quit a while but I decided to do something different. I have been smoking different meats for a while now the traditional way. Wood fired offset smoker. Everything from lobster to Emu. Most of you have seen it at some time or another. I started looking for my next smoker months ago. I like the offset style mostly because I'm used to it. I enjoy babying the fire and playing with the different woods. Our long term plans here in paradise don't call for a good smoker. The ones that run upwards of $1000 but will last a while. I can't make myself spend $400 on any of the new light weights out there that just won't last so I started poking around and looking at options. Pellet smokers are all the rage now. Rick says he wants to get a smaller one because his smokes out his neighbor. His neighbor that's dying from cancer. So he's out of the smoker business. Then theres the propane fired smokers. add your wood chunks or chips, turn on the propane and go. I settled on a Masterbuilt electric smoker. I know it sounds like an oxymoron but thats what it is. Not an oxymoron, an electric smoker. You plug it in turn it on and add your chips. It doesn't get much easier.

This model uses chips. Not chunks or pieces. Chips. and just a few of them at that. About half a cup and they last a looooong time. I reckon my little bag will last through the year. I want to be impressed but it has yet to happen. The first round of ribs were big ol' fat country style. I love Mesquite so that was the chip du jour. All said and done I underestimated the cook time by 2 hours. 4 in the new toy and had to finish them off in the oven for another two. The smoke flavor was OK for my tastebuds but MJ loved it. Did I mention she's not a big smoked meats fan. OK thats one solid plus.
By any stretch there is not much smoke. And I'm being generous. Agreed, I'm used to a different machine. One that could lay down a fog bank to cover a naval invasion. I've seen cigarillo's put out more smoke than this rig.
Did I mention I found Hoerners dog?
Part II was yesterday, more ribs just in a different shape. St. Louis style. Neighbor Bryan brought his down and threw in a chicken for good measure. I miss the smokey coloring of my old offset. As was discussed, this is an electric oven. That smokes. A little. And that is what I am having to adjust to. The ribs were on for 6 hours at 200 and still needed a couple of hours in doors. They were ready but they just ain't done. Did I mention this thin comes with a remote control? Yep. Pretty cool once you get it figured out. And the built in temperature probe is handy as all get out once I remember to use it. I can control the whole thing from my basement. That's a good thing. So. Next will be a whole yard bird. I'm telling you straight up it has some tough competition from my Big Easy. That thing works bird magic. But without the smoke. We'll see.

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