Chicken Thighs: Buttermilk Brined and Cedar Planked

The weather is perfect for grilling.  That makes me very happy.

After I read some great recipes from Mr Dodd few days ago I knew I had to fire up my Weber kettle and put something fun on the grill.


I started with some chicken thighs that were marinated overnight in 3 cups of buttermilk mixed with 1/3 cup of Texas Pete hot sauce.

The thighs were rinsed then dusted with a standard bbq rub.  Decided to cook them over direct heat ( single layer of fully lit charcoal) on a cedar plank that had been soaked in water for about an hour.


After about 45 minutes the thighs had taken on a kiss of smoke and were ready for some sauce.


Painted them with some Sweet Baby Ray.


Then let them cook for another 15 minutes while the sauce set.

When the thighs hit 180F they got pulled from the kettle.


Yeah..these were real nice 🙂

The skin wasn’t as tender as I wanted.  Next time I do these I will scrape the fat off the back of the skin and do that whole “bite through tender” thing.

If you are looking for some other ideas of grilling up some chicken thighs then check out these recipes from the Patrons of the Pit.



Slow N Sear Brisket on a Weber Kettle

I like brisket.

I like new toys.

I like smoking briskets on a Weber kettle with new toys.


I’ve been looking at those Prime Grade packer briskets at Costco for months and finally broke down and brought one home.

Prime Brisket

At 12 pounds the brisket was a little on the small side.  That’s okay…it was just the right size to fit on a Weber kettle.

Brisket on a Weber kettle

I don’t usually smoke briskets on a kettle but I have been playing around with a new grill accessory called the Slow N Sear.

The Slow N Sear is a large charcoal holder with a built in water reservoir.  The setup makes smoking low and slow with a humid environment real simple.  It also helps shield large cuts like brisket from direct heat from a charcoal bed.

Slow N Sear Brisket

You can see the water reservoir in the bottom left of the picture above.  That’s the brisket after four hours.

After six hours the brisket was looking magical.


I wrapped this beauty if foil and stuck it back on the kettle.


The brisket stayed on until it hit 204F in the point.


Let it rest for a while.

Separate the point from the flat.

Slice the flat and cube the point.


I am a point man.  I let the amateurs eat the flat.


Yeah..I’ll take the Point all day long.  It makes me happy.


This was a fun little cook and the Slow N Sear worked great for me.  (FYI…here is a full length Slow N Sear Review I wrote for my grill parts site.)

Hope all of you cool cats are safe and warm.


Smoked Tri Tip

Really loved the 4th of July weekend and watching the World Cup.

We were eating a big pile of smoked tri tip when those first three goals got scored.  We were all very happy.

Sliced Smoked Tri Tip

Started with a standard 2.2 pound tri tip that had some nice marbling.  I really lucked out when I found this guy!

Tri Tip RoastThe tri tip got seasoned with a pretty standard steak rub:

Smoked Tri Tip Dry Rub

  • 1 Tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 Tablespoon cracked black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 Tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 Tablespoon celery salt

Dry Rub for Smoked Tri TipSet up the Weber kettle for indirect heat with a few chunks of hickory.

Smoking a Tri TipI smoked this tri tip for about an hour and a half until it hit 138F.  It didn’t look amazing at this point.

Finished Smoked Tri TipI did my standard trick to pretty up the tri tip and brushed it with some melted butter.

Melted butter makes everything better.

Smoked Tri Tip

I let the smoked tri tip rest for two hours in the refrigerator for easy slicing.

It made for a pretty great pile of sliced steak for sandwiches and Triscuit toppings.

Pile of Sliced Smoked Tri Tip

If you have a little extra time it never hurts to marinate a tri tip.  Here is a little thing I wrote about tri tip marinades on my grill parts site.  Check it out…the marinades will work for any steak!


Smoked Meatballs

I read a great post from The Deerslayer’s Wife for goat cheese stuffed venison meatballs and knew I wanted to do something similar.  I didn’t go as exotic as goat cheese and venison.  I stuck with a standard smoked meatball stuffed with mozzarella cheese.

Smoked Meatball with Cheese

The combination of smoked meat and melted cheese made me very happy.

These smoked meatballs started with a pound of ground chuck and a pound of ground pork.

Meat for smoked meatballsI gently mixed the beef and pork then divided the meat into tablespoon sized portions.

Preparing smoked meatballsI flattened out each “future meatball” and added a little barbecue seasoning and a couple pieces of mozzarella cheese.

The meatballs got rolled back up and the outside got another shot of bbq rub.

The Weber kettle was set up with indirect heat with a few chucks of hickory for smoke.

Grill setup for smoked meatballsThe meatballs were smoked for about 30 minutes before I had to open the lid and take a peek 🙂

Smoked meatballs at 30 minutesI figured as long as I had the lid open I might as well brush the smoked meatballs with some bbq sauce.  I went with Sweet Baby Ray.

After another 15 minutes the smoked meatballs had hit an internal temperature of 160F and I took them off the grill.

Finished smoked meatballsI thought they turned out pretty nice!  Apologies for the blur on the last photo here…apparently the aroma of smoked meatballs distracted me from paying attention to focus points 🙂

Sliced smoked meatballsA note on serving:  These were amazing hot off the smoker.  After an hour of sitting around they cooled off and the cheese had re solidified. The smoked meatballs were still good but nothing like the joy they inspired when they were fresh off the pit.


Repairing Grills and Escaping the Rat Race

Have you ever wanted to get off the hamster wheel and start doing something you love for a living? too.

I am tired of dealing with corporate layoffs, two hour commutes and mind numbing meetings.

It’s time for a change. The thought of change makes me happy.

One of the things I love is fixing up old Weber grills.

I buy used and beat up Weber grills off of Craigslist. I replace the burner tubes, Flavorizer bars, grill grates and ignition systems.

The grills get sold as refurbished grills on Craigslist.

I lose between $25-$50 per project 🙂

The money isn’t the important part about these rehab projects. I just hate the idea of beautiful grills ending up in landfills.

The hardest thing about fixing up old Weber grills is finding the right replacement parts.

Parts for a Weber Genesis C made in 2001 do not fit a Weber Genesis C made in 2002.

Flavorizer bars being sold at Home Depot and Lowes do not fit in Weber grills made 10 years ago. That is a problem for grills that will last 20 years.

The list of part finding headaches is massive.

I have created what I believe to be the most comprehensive and useful guide for finding Weber grill parts on the Internet.

The Weber grill part selection guide is the website

I studied the schematics for every Weber grill manufactured for the past 20 years and made it easy to match your Weber grill to the correct part that you need.

With any luck this site will make life simpler for some people, keep some grills out of landfills and help me create an income that isn’t tied to corporate insanity.

I am sharing this information because I need your help.

For this site to take off people need to know it exists.

Let’s work together!!

If you run a website and do some grilling or barbecuing then I would love the opportunity to sponsor some of your grill sessions.

I am not talking about mad stacks of cash here but certainly enough to pay for a couple of nice steaks!

If you have any interest in working together please either leave a comment below or drop me a line from the contact form on my About Page. I look forward to hearing from you!


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