Thursday morning, April 21, 2022, I woke up early, looked outside, and said to myself, "Self, this would be a great day to smoke pork country-style ribs, potatoes and a head of cabbage." Actually, I'd formulated "the plan" a couple days in advance, and had acquired all of the goodies from our local supermarket.
I fired up the smoker around 07:00 in the morning, and by 08:00, the food was on, and cooking...
Photo: I fired up the smoker a little after 07:00 in the morning, and by around 08:00 the temperature inside had risen to 180 degrees, which is a good place to start. I like to smoke my food at around 200 to 250 degrees.
I use oak wood, which is abundant in Roseville, CA, as all I have to do is go just about anywhere in the area, gather wood, and throw it into the back of my truck. I cut it to size using a chainsaw, or a sawsall - depending on the size of the log - and the oak works perfect for smoking.
Oak wood is similar to hickory, and it works for any meat or vegetables you want to smoke.
Photo: Locally-sourced oak wood, in the firebox makes for great smoking, and for superior flavor. I "enhance" the smoking by throwing dried orange peels, apple cores and other vegetables on the fire, to lend a "fruity" flavor to the fire.
Photo: After seven hours of smoking, I open the pit, and give the world a "thumbs up," as I'm a happy guy!
Photo: Pork ribs, cut "country style," along with cabbage and potatoes, after seven hours of smoking in my "pit," using locally grown oak wood.
Photo: When I smoke, I like to use cast iron frying pans to hold the meat and the veggies. I have many cast iron frying pans, and one of them is at least 100 years old, as I inherited it from my mother. I can't tell the difference between them, as they all look the same. The drippings from the pork make for excellent gravy!
Photo: I removed the bitter core from the head of cabbage and stuffed it with crushed garlic and butter. After smoking it for 6+ hours... this made for a simply amazing vegetable side dish.
The Russet potatoes were simply washed, greased with butter, and baked with the cabbage. Potatoes and cabbage are simply delicious when they're smoked!
Photo: I purchased country-style pork ribs, and diced them with garlic, onion and jalapeno chili peppers, which made for a great main dish for my smoker. Seven hours smoking over oak wood works wonders for ribs!
Photo: I'm a HUGE lover of gravy, for every meal! I took the drippings from the ribs, added a couple tablespoons of butter, salt and masa harina, along with diced garlic, jalapeno pepper and onion - from the meat - and made a pan of gravy to enhance tonight's dinner.
Photo: Dinner worked out great with smoked - actually baked - Russet potatoes, cabbage, and country-style pork ribs. The gravy added the final touch to this delicious dinner.
To me, there is nothing more relaxing than spending a day smoking an amazing dinner, using locally grown and gathered oak wood, over an "old school" smoker. Simple and "old school" works for me, and the end result is a delicious meal.
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