Project Smoke Memorial Day Premiere | Deviled Smoked Eggs Recipe

Memorial Day is always a favorite holiday for barbecue lovers, since it marks the start of the outdoor grilling season. This Memorial Day weekend will be extra special with the new season of Project Smoke premiering on Public Television, giving many viewers their first glimpse of Yoder Smokers in action!

Yoder Smokers is excited to be a part of Project Smoke this season. One of our main goals is to bring the art and science of cooking with smoke and fire into everyone’s backyard – something we share with Project Smoke creator and host Steven Raichlen, who has made the study of barbecue his life’s work. His books have sold millions of copies and inspired home cooks all over the world to fire up their grills again. The latest, Project Smoke, is a comprehensive guide to smoking with step-by-step instructions from choosing the right cooker through experimenting with smoke flavor profiles. It also features 100 of the best recipes Steven has collected from both seasons of Project Smoke: everything from cocktails to dessert, and all the meaty goodness in-between!
Steven Raichlen Yoder Smokers Cimarron on Project Smoke

How would you like to experience Project Smoke up close and personal in the heart of Kansas? Steven Raichlen will be visiting our sister store All Things Barbecue in Wichita on Saturday, June 25th, sharing BBQ stories and secrets from his travels, cooking on a variety of Yoder Smokers, and signing copies of his new book. Join Project Smoke’s Steven Raichlen for two exclusive cooking classes in the ATBBQ Test Kitchen.

Space is limited, so be sure to register now to reserve your seat before they sell out!

If you’re looking for a crowd-pleasing side dish for your Memorial Day cookout, here’s a great twist on a potluck favorite – straight from page 36 of Project Smoke:

Steven Raichlen’s Deviled Smoked Eggs

Steven Raichlen Smoked Eggs from Project Smoke Yield: Makes 24 halves  Prep time: 20 minutes (plus egg smoking time)

These may be the most flavorful deviled eggs you will ever experience—thanks to an invigorating blast of wood smoke. For even more flavor, top them with bacon, brisket, or smoked seafood.

INGREDIENTS
For the filling
12 Smoked Eggs (see full recipe)
1/3 cup mayonnaise (pref. Hellmann’s or Best Foods), or to taste
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon sriracha, Tabasco sauce, or other favorite hot sauce, or to taste
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce

For the toppings (optional)
Chopped chives
Spanish smoked paprika (pimentón)
Regular or smoked salmon caviar
Fried bacon slivers
Finely shredded smoked beef brisket (page 66) or pulled pork (page 88)

  1. Cut the eggs in half lengthwise. Cut a thin slice off the bottom of each half so it won’t wobble. Pop out the yolks and place them and the egg white trimmings in a food processor. (Alternatively, you can mash the yolk mixture with a fork.)
  2. Add the mayonnaise, mustard, sriracha, and Worcestershire sauce, and process to a thick puree. For a creamier filling, add more mayo.
  3. Spoon the mixture back into the egg white halves or pipe it in with a pastry bag or a resealable plastic bag with a lower corner clipped off. Top the eggs, if desired, with a sprinkling of chives and/or smoked paprika, or a dollop of salmon caviar, bacon, or shredded brisket or pork. Refrigerate in a covered container or loosely covered with plastic wrap until serving.

Download the full recipe to save and print: Steven Raichlen’s Deviled Smoked Eggs from Project Smoke (PDF)

Project Smoke Yoder Smokers YS640 Giveaway

To celebrate the release of the Project Smoke book and the premiere of the new season, we are partnering with Steven Raichlen’s Barbecue Bible, Workman Publishing, GrillGrate, and Tailgater Magazine to give away an amazing YS640 pellet grill package! You could win a YS640 with GrillGrate set and tool, plus a copy of Project Smoke.

Learn more and enter for a chance to win the Yoder Smokers YS640 pellet cooker at BarbecueBible.com.

 

 

Cattleman’s Grill Steakhouse Parmesan Cheese Fries

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Just like every cowboy needs a sidekick, every good steak or burger can be made even better with a great side dish.

One of our all-time favorites: Parmesan Cheese Fries, dusted with Cattleman’s Grill Steakhouse Seasoning and fresh herbs. They go with anything, and also make a great main dish – just add leftover brisket, a little more cheese, and call it Irish Nachos. Substitute cheese curds and add gravy for classic Canadian Poutine. The possibilities are endless, especially when you cook them in cast iron on your Yoder Smokers YS640.

INGREDIENTS

Serves 4, as an appetizer

3  medium sized potatoes, washed and cut into strips
2  Tbsp Cattleman’s Grill Steakhouse Seasoning
2  Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/4 – 1/2 Cup  parmesan cheese
1   clove garlic, minced
1   Tbsp fresh parsley, minced

Salt & Pepper to taste

Preheat your YS640 for direct grilling at 425º F. (Be sure to remove the diffuser plate or the trap door of your two-piece diffuser plate.) When your pit comes up to temp go ahead and place your oven safe skillet on the grates over the firebox to preheat. We’re using a 12″ Lodge cast-iron skillet.

Make sure to clean your potatoes before cutting, since we are leaving the skin on. (Note: You can slice your french fries any size you want, ours are cut about a 1/4″ the entire length of the potato.) Put your potato slices in a large bowl and coat them with the olive oil, Cattleman’s Grill Steakhouse seasoning, and garlic.

Head to the cooker and place the fries in your preheated skillet. Stir or rotate every 10 minutes to make sure you get that delicious crisp all around. Around the 30 minute mark, or when browned to your liking, sprinkle the fries evenly with parmesan cheese. Shut the cooker door, allowing the cheese to melt over the fries for an additional 5 minutes or so.

Remove from the skillet and top with scallions or parsley to serve.

Add additional toppings (pulled pork, brisket, chili) as desired or dip into ketchup or ranch dressing.

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Competition Cart Upgrade? Try This YS640 Cart DIY

You don’t hear much buyer’s remorse among Yoder Smokers owners in regards to cooking performance. One regret we DO hear a lot, though, is owners wishing they had gone ahead and ordered the competition cart option instead of trying to scrimp and save a little cash by ordering their pellet cooker mounted on a standard cart. They are thrilled to discover you can always upgrade to the competition cart for your YS480 or YS640 whenever you’re ready. But then you’re left with an empty cart on wheels… what do you do with the perfectly good, durable steel Yoder Smokers cart that’s left behind?

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Owner Randy shared his reuse idea on the Team Yoder Facebook Group. He bolted an old tool box onto the YS640 cart, turning it into the perfect accessory caddy/prep station to sit alongside his cooker. Simple but ingenious, much like the Yoder Smokers YS640 pellet cooker itself!

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Tilapia En Papillote on the YS640

Rosemary Tilapia En Papillote on the Yoder Smokers YS640 Pellet Cooker

Weekday meals can be a struggle, especially at the start of a new year when you’re coming down from the holidays and trying earnestly to stick to all of those resolutions about staying in shape. But eating healthy doesn’t have to be a raw deal, especially when you own a Yoder Smokers YS640 pellet cooker. This versatile cooker makes it easy to avoid the temptation of fast food when you’re on the go: throw a couple of extra chicken breasts on the cooker and cube them up to serve over pre-washed greens from the deli section. On weekends, smoke turkey breasts or pork loin and slice thin to make your own lunchmeat without added preservatives or salt. Incorporate more healthy seafood into your diet by trying new flavor profiles and cooking techniques on your YS640.

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Grilling, smoking, sauteeing and baking are all great methods of preparing fish on the Yoder Smokers YS640 but this recipe features our take on the classic French method called En Papillote – “in paper.” You essentially make a cooking pouch out of parchment paper that steams food in its own juices. This method is not only simple to assemble and quick to cook, but there is very little clean up involved… just slide the fish out of the pouch and onto a bed of greens or some brown rice and you’re golden.

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Fin & Feather Rosemary Tilapia En Papillote

INGREDIENTS

Serves 2

1/2 lime, juiced
1 small jalapeño, seeds removed and diced
1 clove garlic, smashed
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1/4 yellow onion, chopped
Plowboy’s BBQ Fin & Feather Rub
2 tilapia fillets, skin removed
parchment paper

Set up your YS640 for indirect grilling at 250º F, with the diffuser plate in place.

Fold a 18″-20″ length of parchment paper in half and place fillets along inner crease. Mix lime juice, jalapeño, garlic, onion and pour over fish. Sprinkle with Fin & Feather rub and place rosemary sprig on top. Fold parchment to cover fish, then fold ends over to create pouch.

Place pouch on the bottom rack of the YS640 and cook for 25-30 min, or until the internal temp of the fish is 140 degrees. The pouch puffs up during cooking, filling with steam, so cut open carefully. Serve immediately.

 

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Central Texas Brisket on the YS640

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: Yoder owners are THE BEST. Hands-down.

Need proof? Check out our Official Forum, a place where current and future owners come together to share tips, tricks, and mouthwatering photos from their barbecue arsenals. Central Texas brisket has been a hot topic for a while, due in no small part to that Beard Award-winning fella down in Austin and the recent shortage of what used to be a cheap and abundant cut of beef. The story and photos below were posted by forum user Scott, who was on a mission to replicate Texan brisket bark in Western Michigan using his YS640. Looks like he nailed it!

Central Texas Style Brisket on the Yoder Smokers YS640 pellet grill

Central Texas Barbecue is my favorite style, bar none, and it’s what I always go for with my brisket. I’ve smoked quite a few briskets on my YS640 since purchasing, but this one ended up being the best so far… a success on every level. Well, almost every level. I wrote down some notes and took photos along the way and figured maybe this might be of some interest to my fellow pitmasters.

The Meat
A 15 lb Choice packer. I live in West Michigan and packers have alway been an expensive proposition – around $8.50lb; often for just select grade!! However, in a most bizarre and awesome turn of events, this summer nearly every butcher shop in the area has started carrying packers of choice grade at a much more reasonable $4.50/lb. Still more than what you’d pay in Texas to be sure, but much more affordable for us West Michigan Yankees. This new found brisket bonanza actually corresponds with something of a barbecue renaissance in this area – with no less than 3 barbecue joints opening up in downtown Grand Rapids just this summer! Even more shocking is that they are all offering some pretty serious brisket, and sell all meat by the pound. NICE.
Packer Brisket for the Yoder Smokers YS640

The Trim
I lost probably about 3lb or so of inedible fat and browned meat edges. This was a really great cut, with nice marbling and a deckle that wasn’t out of control, haha. I also trimmed off every bit of silver skin on the back side. I hate the stuff with a passion and getting all of it off with ensure that the rub sticks like glue when you go to pull and then slice.
Trimming Brisket for the Yoder Smokers YS640

The Rub
Nothing but Texas Rub, baby! That is to say, kosher salt and coarse black pepper. Absolutely, positively nothing else. No sugar, no cayenne, no olive oil before the rub, no mustard bath before the rub…nothing. It’s taken me awhile to finally adobt the purity of what Franklin Barbecue, Blacks, Cranky Franks, and other classic Central Texas barbecue joints use and I will never go back. Ever. It’s not that I’m against a savory blend of other spices for the rub. Those can be really good. It’s just that Aaron Franklin and others are right on the money when they stress, like gospel, that salt and pepper is all the meat needs. If you’ve never tried it; if you have doubts….give it a go just once. Don’t do mustard or any other base. A nice choice grade of meat with good marbling will not need it. You will be amazed at the purity and flavor.
Simple Brisket Rub for the Yoder Smokers YS640

The Cook
(Yoder set to 250° for the entire cook Damper set to slightly, maybe an inch or so, to the left of dead center so that I’d get a bit more heat on the point – which is always positioned closest to the heat grate). At the very start of my Yoder experience I took everything out before seasoning, set the damper so that it’s exactly dead center in the pit, then marked that location with a sharpie pen on the stainless rack above the damper handle. I can then see instantly where I need to set my damper to start for an even cook, or adjust accordingly depending on my needs

I put a small stainless steel bowl full of water on the top rack. While the bottom rack is best, this still helps keep the meat moist.

At no point did I mist. Misting is the enemy of great bark. Unless you’ve got a massive propane tank cooker that can hold 4 or 5 briskets, misting a brisket on a Yoder is completely unnecessary and will only serve to dampen your bark. I’m not saying don’t do it because for a lot of pitmasters the misting is an important part of the process and taste they are after. If you desire Central Texas style like I do, then don’t mist.

FAT SIDE UP. No self respecting Texan – or a Yankee like me who fancies himself a self respecting Texan – is going to smoke a brisket fat side down.

I decided to mix it up a bit for this cook. Normally I cook for 7 hours and then wrap in butcher paper for another 3 or so until I hit an internal at the flat of 210° and 200° for the point. Then I’ll rest for anywhere from an hour to four hours in the oven (still wrapped in the paper, of course) on a warm setting. I’ve found that there’s very little difference from a 2 hour rest to a 4 hour rest in terms of juiciness. At the one hour mark it’s fine, but I go at least 2.

For this cook, however, I went completely unwrapped the entire cook. I got the thing on at 10:45pm and pulled it the next morning at 8:07am. 9hrs and 20min total time. The internals were: Point = 202°, Flat = 210°. You honestly do not want the flat to go any higher than that and, in fact, I should have pulled it at 205° or so.

I honestly thought I’d be cooking longer, but I always forget how efficient the Yoder is as compared to a stick burner. Those temp variations are so small! I set my alarm to go off every 90min so that I could wake up and check the pellet hopper and make sure everything was going smoothly. All temptations to peek were resisted! LOL.

I never inject my brisket. Ever. Doing so is criminal. If you cook your brisket right – with a nice choice grade – there’s zero need to inject.
Brisket Bark on a Yoder Smokers YS640

The Rest
After the brisket was pulled, I wrapped it in butcher paper and tossed it into my regular oven on the warm setting. I have no idea the temp…it just says ‘warm.’ This was a very long rest: 7 hours!! I normally don’t rest that long but things got going around the house and we didn’t slice until much later than expected. No worries. As I mentioned earlier, there’s no difference I can ever tell between that 2 hour rest to a 4 hour rest… or a 7 hour rest. I read all this stuff that people insist on at least a 5 hour rest or whatever. I don’t agree. I also never do the whole ‘wrap in towels and rest in a cooler or cambro’ thing. I find dragging out my cooler for storing brisket to be highly annoying and it always needs cleaning so… oven it is!

Now, let’s get down to the heart of this thing: I long ago stopped using foil for my brisket cooks and resting because FOIL IS THE ENEMY. As mentioned above, I usually wrap with butcher paper at the 7 hour mark, but used it here for just the rest. Here’s why: Resting in the butcher paper will absolutely retain your moisture and heat but, even if you overwrap, the meat can still breath inside. Even after becoming saturated with the wonderful juice and oils, it still breathes. Foil never breathes. It simply steams your meat and makes the bark into a soggy mess.

If you haven’t made the switch to butcher paper, give it a try. You used to have to order it from obscure online restaurant supply houses but now Amazon has it for a great price and very fast delivery!
Brisket Resting In Paper

The Result
This was the best brisket I’ve smoked yet. Getting to what the great barbecue writer and blogger Daniel Vaughn calls that ‘sugar cookie’ bark is so rewarding and a blessing!!

That’s not to say there weren’t some niggling problems. The bottom of the brisket was very nearly burned. I mean, just barely shy of that point. Close. Very close. It was a bit crunchy, but thankfully not burned. I should have wrapped at about the 7.5 to 8hr mark. Just looking at the thing I can tell that the last hour is when the crunch was probably formed. Even sticking to my original process of the 7 hour mark would be fine but… this brisket had the best bark I’ve done and that was my mission on this cook.

The flat – even the end of the flat – was moist. The juice was everywhere, in every slice and nugget. Long after the slicing, every remaining piece was juicy. The burnt ends and bulk end of the point were swimming in juice; even the remnants an hour after slicing were still juicy. Love that!
Central TX Brisket on the Yoder YS640 Pellet Cooker

Well, that’s it! Sorry for the long post but I love talking about this stuff! I’ve still got so much to learn, but really enjoyed those posts where folks go into serious detail. They’ve been such a help, and hopefully this post will do the same for someone just starting out. I love my Yoder!!!

Juicy Texas-style brisket cooked on a Yoder Smokers YS640

 

 

Smoked Salmon on the YS1500 Pellet Cooker

Our cookers are great for instant gratification, sure, but one of the little-known facts about smokers is they are a phenomenal tool for meal planning and making the most out of your grocery budget. Smoking for more than just one meal is a great way to stretch your dollar and your time manning the grill. Our customer service guru Herb recently came across a stellar deal at his local Sam’s Club and shared his method for brining and smoking salmon on the Yoder Smokers community Forum.

Smoked salmon is delicious plain, but also adds great flavor to many dishes… try flaking some over your favorite mac and cheese recipe or mixing with cream cheese and capers for a delicious sandwich spread. Herb used his YS1500 pellet cooker for this project, but this works just as well on the Yoder Smokers YS640, too– you just won’t be able to pack quite as many salmon fillets on it! Vacuum packed salmon keeps well in the freezer and also makes a great gift.


Salmon was cheap by the case at Sam’s club last week, so we bought a 36 pound case.

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We cut the fillets in half, rinsed it off and dry brined it.

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After about 3 hours in the brine, we rinsed it off.

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Then let it sit to air dry and form a pellicle.

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Then lightly sprinkled some spices on it all.

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Put it all on the YS1500 to smoke at 200 degrees.

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Here is the end result. These were the first two pieces to hit 145º and be taken off the cooker. (The rest are all very close as well.)

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The rest were vacuum-packed, ready for the freezer.

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