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New here, my first post, I have questions please

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  • New here, my first post, I have questions please

    New here, just call me Rich. This is my first post.

    I'm on the verge of buying a KJ Classic II. I think any day now. I have a couple question.

    Do you guy recommend a first time practice run using no food?

    Do you always fill the KJ all the way up with lump even if you are only going to grill a couple buggers?

    Probably one of the first uses of my KJ will be "smash burgers" I watch a video on this on line. What difference can I expect in the buggers by doing them in the KJ as opposed to on a stove with very hot cast Iron pan?

    I live in Alaska. I'll be using my KJ in very cold weather, at times (10-20 degrees). Can I do this, any special instructions?

    I'll have more question later lol

  • #2
    Most peeps will tell you to spend a few hrs with a new kamado practicing temp controll via vent adjustments. See setzlers videos for some info on that.
    I almost always use a full firebowl of charcoal. You coild prob get away with not filling for a cuple burgies if you have a decent amount left over. But i would recomend usually filling.
    Your kamado is ideal for cold temp cooking as it is thick ceramic.
    I have never cooked a smash burger on a stove, so cant help on that question. You may never cook on a stove again. Pull that trigger.


    • #3
      You do not need to fill it fill with charcoal for grilling, only a long smoke. I do recommend several practices to get the hang at first. There is a learning curve, it will take a few cooks to get the hang of fine tuning the temp. Cooking burgers is a good start.


      • #4
        is there any info about installing a KJ in a built-in summer kitchen? Are there any diagrams wrt air flow etc?


        • #5
          Welcome Rich! You'll be up and running in no time! Just set it and forget it, don't constantly try to adjust your temp. Let it get to the temp you have it set for and balance out, then adjust accordingly. Good thing is if you use too much lump, you can clean it out and reuse it. Enjoy your Joe!


          • #6
            Rich one HUGE piece of advice I can give you. ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS burp your cooker before you open the lid fully. It is even more important on high temp cooks but it is good to get into a habit to burp it every time you open the lid. A burp is simply opening the lid about 4-6 inches and pause for a few seconds before you open the lid all the way. The reason is to allow the heat to escape out of the dome before opening all the way. If you jerk it open without burping you can easily lose your eyebrows, or worse. This is required for all ceramic/dome cookers, not just Kamado Joe.