A kogel BBQ is one of the most versatile BBQ's in my opinion. Most people have one at home.
Just grilling, low & slow, hot smoking, cold smoking, etc. you can do everything with it!
Here you can read what you can do with it and how you can use it best.
To light your kogel BBQ you first and foremost need fuel. You select this based on the session you are going to do.
It is best to choose charcoal if you have a short session. Charcoal burns reasonably short
very hot. So if hot & fast is your thing, charcoal is the perfect fuel for you.
Nowadays the charcoal market is inundated with different types of charcoal, so that sometimes you can no longer see the trees through the forest. The first choice you have to make is what kind of wood you are going to use; do you choose soft wood or hard wood? Soft wood burns very quickly at a high temperature, while hard wood burns a little longer. You should also look at the way the charcoal is made, if it is made with chemical enhancers I would not take them. These give a very unpleasant smell and taste to your meat / fish / vegetables.
Do you want to have a longer session and do you not need a lot of heat? Then it is better to use briquettes.
Briquettes are compressed charcoal, they burn much longer than conventional charcoal and give off less heat. The choice of the type of briquettes is also important. I myself will not easily choose a cheaper brand, these give off more dust when they are burned out and this will block your air supply. Prefer to choose a more quality brand, the ash formation with these briquettes is much less, so you have to look less at your BBQ.
Of course you can perfectly combine both types of fuel. For example, you can add charcoal to your briquettes to increase the temperature, or add some briquettes to charcoal to stretch the time it burns a bit.
You NEVER use wood in a kogel BBQ. This for the simple reason that a wood fire becomes very hot, this can damage your BBQ enormously.
The only wood you can use in a kogel BBQ is smoking wood. We only use this for smoking and does not give off much heat by itself.
Many people go when lighting the BBQ
into the mist. Not anymore!
You can light a BBQ in different ways
do manners; you can use one
coal starter, putting firelighters between the coals, using newspaper, etc. In this section I explain the different methods.
By far the easiest way to BBQ your bullet
to light is the coal starter. You fill the 'chimney' with coal, light a number of firelighters and place them under the coal starter. This way, the heat from the firelighters will spread upwards and your coals will be scalding hot within 20 minutes.
What can you do if you don't have a coal starter at hand? Well, then you cut a number of coals in the kogel BBQ or in the coal trays in the BBQ and you put some firelighters in between. Make sure that the lid of your BBQ is open and that the air slide at the bottom is fully open; this way the fire gets a little more oxygen and burns faster.
Please do me a favor: don't use those white firelighters you get in every store. These give off a chemical taste that you will also find in your meat / fish / vegetables afterwards. Preferably use brown firelighters or firelighters. The latter is always my preference.
Also no firelighters at hand? Newspaper will also be fine, dude! Make a pile of the coals and put some wads of newspaper underneath. Light the wads and let the flames do their work. Make sure your fire always has enough oxygen!
Getting your BBQ on is one thing, getting and / or keeping the temperature stable is another.
In this section I'll give you some tips and tricks that will certainly help you keep your temperature stable.
MEASURING IS KNOWING
It is important to know what the temperature of your BBQ is before you can keep it stable. Most bullet BBQs have a built-in thermometer, which measures the temperature at the top of your dome . This is not really ideal for us, because we want to know the temperature on our grid. Depending on how you place the lid, this thermometer is usually over your fire. This allows you to read a much higher temperature than that for your meat / fish / vegetables. So I usually propose to place a second thermometer on your grid, this will give you a much better picture of the effective temperature on your grid.
WORKING WITH SLIDERS
The daisy disc on top and the slide under your BBQ both have the function to adjust your temperature by controlling the air supply and exhaust.
With the slider under the BBQ you set the coarse temperature, by opening the air supply a little further, the BBQ will become warmer, close it a little more and it will cool down a bit.
The daisy wheel on top of the BBQ helps you fine-tune your temperature.
WORK WITH ZONES
Most of you will have worn it before, your flesh is black and burnt on the outside but still raw on the inside. This is because your BBQ may be too hot and you are not using different zones.
In this blog post I will teach you how to set up your BBQ to work with different zones.
I also have one for the different low & slo w methods
Tips & Tricks blog post made.
Your session is over and now your grill looks dirty, or your BBQ has been outside for too long and it starts to see some dirt. How do you best approach this?
In this section I will explain how I clean and maintain my kogel BBQ.
An important part of your BBQ is of course your grill. If it is not clean, unpleasant flavors can be added to your meat and mold can develop when you do not use your BBQ for a longer period of time. That's why it's important to carefully clean your grill after each session while it is still warm.
Cleaning your grill is very easy, you take a stainless steel brush and go over the grill surface thoroughly. This way you ensure that all coarser pieces are off your grid. Make sure you use a good quality wire brush, otherwise you run the risk of steel hairs coming off your brush and sticking to your grill. In this way, these hairs can end up in your food and thus also in your body with all its consequences.
Then you remove the grill from the BBQ and put them in a soaking bath to dissolve the smaller impurities.
COVER & LID
The bowl and lid do not need to be cleaned that often, I myself give my BBQ an intensive cleaning three times a year. You do this by wiping your BBQ completely with a damp cloth, afterwards you spray some specialized cleaning agent on it and rub all the dirt from your BBQ with a cloth. Done!