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Kamado style grills (big green egg, etc)

Discussion in 'Drink, Smoke, and Fine Dining' started by Dom, Jan 17, 2010.

  1. Dom

    Dom F1 Veteran
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    I'm thinking about getting a kamado style grill.

    Seem to be lots of options out there, the most popular is the Big Green Egg. But also Primo, grilldome, kamado joe, etc.

    I like the Big Green Egg, but it seems like they nickle and dime you for everything. It looks like at the local dealer, a large BGE, kart, shelves will run about $1000. Plus, you've got to buy the little tools like the charcoal scraper, plate setter, extra grill layers, etc.

    Other grills, like the Kamado Joe are closer to about $800 for the same setup.

    Lastly, there is another grill, called the BubbaKeg that is the same type of system, but instead of ceramic, it is basically a insulated stainless steel keg. The kicker with this one is that you can get it from Home Depot online for $599 including free shipping. Comes with rolling kart stand, side trays, 2 cooking grills, and a hitch carrier (yes, you read that right). Really good deal, but I am not sure about the longevity of the unit. Will the metal rust out over time? How sturdy/well built is the unit? Will the insulation burn out over time? They have a forum, and from the posts I've read, people love them, but really no idea about the durability over time. Nonetheless, the pricing makes it extremely attractive, and the fact that it is lighter than ceramic could also be an advantage.

    Anyone have any experiences with any of these BGE alternatives? Or is it best to just stick with the BGE.
     
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  3. Dom

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    #2 Dom, Jan 17, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    By the way, I found this comparison sheet if anyone is interested.

    It seems like lots of the alternatives are decent products, but I just don't know anyone with any of the alternatives. Seems like there are a bunch of fchatters that have the big green egg.
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  4. GatorFL

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    BGE here. shop around, I found prices all over the place. Got mine from the local pool supply place (Pinch a Penny) for about $800. This included a large Egg, stand, shelves, tools and delivery. Only extras I bought were a cast iron grate and a platesetter, I think these cost less than $75.
     
  5. powerpig

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    I purchased my BGE on Craigslist for $275 and added the shelves, cart and plate setter. I also added a cast iron grill grate. Took a few "experiments" with it and now I love it.
     
  6. Dom

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    Anyone know about the old big green eggs? There is one for sale in SD that is from the 70's. I believe the materials might be different, but not sure. Can't find too much info on it.
     
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  8. powerpig

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    The one I purchased was an older model. They are made of the same materials. The only difference is the metal band that holds the lid on. You can't mount the optional shelves on the band. I called the Big Green Egg Company about it and they sold me a new band at cost shipped free. I'm going to grill pork chops on mine this afternoon.
     
  9. UroTrash

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    Best deal EVER.
     
  10. Dom

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    OK, I bit the bullet and ordered a large BGE from a local dealer. Should have it early next week (Mon or Tue). I also ordered the plate setter, ash tool, 3-tiered rack, etc.

    I did not order a table, decided I'm going to just build something for now.

    Wish me luck.
     
  11. Giovanni_P

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    No it's not :). I just scored a large-size BGE FOR FREE on craigslist this week. Cost me gas money for a buddy's pickup truck, a bottle of wine for his time, and probably $50 worth of spare parts.

    I still can't quite believe it myself.

    Gio P
     
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  13. BubblesQuah

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    One of the lessons you will probably learn is how long it takes the hair on your arm, your eyebrows and eyelashes to grow back! :D :D
     
  14. powerpig

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    I learned that rater quickly. My stache is still trying to grow back!
     
  15. Dom

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    Got my BGE yesterday!!! I made a little table for it over the weekend, and set it up last night. Unfortunately, it was pouring rain, so I didn't start it up.

    Planning to do my first cook tonight. It will probably be something quick and easy, like burgers, since I need to work a little late today.

    I am planning on doing some ribs over the weekend.

    Can't wait.
     
  16. powerpig

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    #13 powerpig, Jan 27, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2010
    The best advice I can give you is (1) Burn the coals off for around 30-45 minutes before adding the meat. (2) Don't lift the grill lid to quickly or you'll end up with half a stache and one eyebrow. (3) Pay attention to air flow as that regulates the temp. (4) Have fun!
     
  17. GatorFL

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  18. UroTrash

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    +1 Pig knows his BGE.
     
  19. Dom

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    #16 Dom, Jan 27, 2010
    Last edited: Jan 27, 2010
    We had planned for something quick and easy: burgers and some mixed veggies. My wife made the patties and cut up the veggies so everything was ready to go when I got home from work.

    I was going to cook them at about 400 degrees, since I read that you should do the first few cooks at 400 or below to season the gasket.

    I filled my old Weber chimney with lump, and started it up. After it looked ready, I emptied it out into the egg. I also put in a handful of apple chips that I happened to have on hand. I had the bottom vent open, with the open daisy wheel on top. I closed the lid, and watched as the temp quickly rose up to 550. Oh crap. I closed up the vents and temp started going down. I played with it a bit, and finally got it holding relatively steady at about 425.

    Veggies in the veggie basket first, then burgers on the grill. After a while, flipped the burgers and let them cook some more.

    Noticed during the cook that I was getting lots of smoke out of the top vent, maybe from the wood chips? But, no smoke or anything coming out of the gasket, which is good.

    After I finished cooking, took off the meat and veggies, I left it for a while, and it held 425 the whole time, until I closed the vents and put on the ceramic cap.

    Burgers and veggies came out pretty good. Taste was very smokey, I wonder if I overdid it with the wood chips?

    Overall, pretty good meal. Burgers were very juicy, but not seared as I would have liked. Normally, I would sear burgers on my grill at 600+, and after the first few cooks, I would like to do similar with the egg.

    Anyway, I can't wait for my next cook. I am definitely going to try some low and slow over the weekend. This thing is really fun!

    I think we are going to try some chicken pieces (legs and thighs) tomorrow.
     
  20. powerpig

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    Did you let it burn off for 30-45 minutes? If you don't do that, the food will be very smokey.
     
  21. Dom

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    I think I did about 30 minutes. Maybe it was a little less (20?).

    Why do some people claim that it gets to temp in 10 minutes, if you need to wait 30 min for the coals to burn off?

    Anyway, today I am doing chicken pieces, indirect, at 350 degrees. I am home for the afternoon, and have had it on now at about 350-370 for the last 1/2 hour. I am going to be putting the chicken on soon, and cook for about an hour.

    At this stage in the game, I have been keeping a close watch on the temp. I did have to play with the vents a bit to get it to stay at the 350-370 range, but I imagine that it will get better with more experience. It's been pretty stable now for the last 30 minutes or so.

    Dom
     
  22. powerpig

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    You need to burn it for a minimum of 30 mins. I usually go around 45. It let's the charcoal burn down. The best way to tell is look for a thin wisp of smoke coming out the top. Also, make sure you use only hardwood natural charcoal. Let us know how the chicken turns out. You may want to try spatchcocking a whole one. Comes out super moist!
     
  23. Dom

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    Chicken came out great. It was just legs and thighs, but soo damn good. Had some bbq sauce on the side, but didn't really need it.

    I definately want to try the spatchcock chicken at some point.

    Tonight we may try some salmon.
     
  24. UroTrash

    UroTrash Three Time F1 World Champ
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    When you do the salmon you will wonder why people even both to raise those big hairy creatures that go:Moo... It will be that good.

    I think salmon is the best thing going on the Egg.

    What is spatchcock chicken?
     
  25. UroTrash

    UroTrash Three Time F1 World Champ
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    BTW, my favorite salmon on the egg:

    In a big freezer bag put soy sauce and honey, ground ginger and some olive oil. You'll have to fiddle with the amounts, I never measure.

    Shake hard, drop in the salmon fillets and let soak for a while.
     
  26. powerpig

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    You cut the backbone out and flatten the chicken. Cook it on direct heat breast up. Comes out great!
     
  27. 8 SNAKE

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    #24 8 SNAKE, Jan 29, 2010
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 7, 2017
    I must humbly disagree with you on this one. I love salmon, but absolutely nothing compares to a properly cooked filet mignon on the Egg.
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  28. 8 SNAKE

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    This will be my dinner very, very soon. Do you cook the salmon on a plank or directly over the grill? Temp?
     

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