Tag Archives: bbq smoker

Super Smoker: Napoleon Apollo AS300K

I really am not a fan of charcoal for the sole reason that gas is just an easier way to go. The idea that I’d have to deal with starting up the charcoal and then cleaning up the ash after is just exhausting even to think about. But I have to say that using the Napoleon Apollo AS300K for the first time (and a few times after that – sorry this post came late) has really opened up my mind about the authenticity of flavour that comes with smoking with charcoal and woodchips/chunks/logs.

My first attempt of smoking up a Hickory Chicken went a little something like this:

I started the charcoal up using a charcoal starter, some old newspaper and some fire starters you can pick up from the super market. Just fill up the charcoal starter with a mix of fire starters and charcoal (I use coconut charcoal as the flavour is a bit more neutral, and they are natural and long-lasting – you can get this from Cold Storage). Crush up some old newspaper and stuff them at the bottom of the charcoal starter. Using a kitchen lighter, set the newspaper on fire and place either on the grill of the Apollo (or if you have a gas BBQ, you can use this to light up the charcoal too!) and put the lid over it as you wait. This should take about 20-25 minutes.

Once this is done, you can pour the charcoal into the charcoal basket, and add your woodchips/chunks/logs. I use a mix of Hickory woodchips and chunks which I had soaked in water an hour prior to adding them to the fire.

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Napoleon Apollo AS300K in Action!

I had already marinated the a whole chicken in barbecue sauce and salt. I didn’t do anything to the chicken other than clean it out, but on my second attempt, I butterflied the chicken and it cooked a lot better all through the chicken.

Before closing the hood, I attached the Napoleon Accu-Probe Bluetooth Thermometer probes to the chicken. I LOVE this device, which will be available in Singapore around August 2018, because it has up to 4 probes (though the set only comes with 2 probes, and you’ll have to get the others separately) which means you can check the temperatures of 4 different items in the smoker.

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ACCU-PROBE™ BLUETOOTH® THERMOMETER

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Napoleon Accu-Probe App on my iPhone

The Accu-probe thermometer links up with this Napoleon app which you can download for free, and the app has settings that will tell you when your chicken (or whatever meat you wish to select) is at the ideal-readiness temperature. It also tells you what temperature each probe is at, and there is also a few timers you can set the app to.

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Nice and Smokey Hickory-Smoker Chicken

I was able to go back inside the house and avoid the heat and smoke in the garden because of the Accu-Probe thermometer, and it let me know when the chicken had reach the ideal temperature for doneness. Really convenient!

The hickory chicken was incredibly smokey, so juicy and tender! The flavour is very much more intense than using a grilling plank or a smoker box in a gas BBQ, so the effort I put in in starting the charcoal was very worthwhile. Once you get over the charcoal lighting part, it really is quite easy to use because you don’t have to stand around all day (but basting it once in a while doesn’t hurt).

There’s a lot more to explore with the Napoleon AS300K because it actually has 2 chambers, hanging hooks, and a water basin, which means you can do anything from pekking duck, wet smoking, dry smoking, hot and cold smoking, and even just regular grilling if you want!

You can get the Napoleon Apollo Smoker AS300K from Liberty Patio for $599 (and $60 for the BBQ cover).

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Beer, Can?

The weekend was quite exciting for me as I finally made time to do something I’ve always wanted to try – ROASTING A BEER CAN CHICKEN ($24)!

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I started out by making a marinade with Soy Sauce, Minced Garlic and Melted Butter. Just mix it all together (blend it in a blender is best because the mince garlic can be a bit chunky for the marinade injector)! Once that’s done, I had to set up the beer can chicken roaster.

The Napoleon Beer Can Chicken Roaster comes in 2 parts – the pan on the bottom and the metal legs that holds the chicken up. Insert the ends of the metal legs into the holes of the pan such that the legs are standing up. Then, grab a can of beer (or soda) and empty out half the can. Squeeze this can into the middle of the pan and beneath the metal legs. After which, you can place the butt of the chicken over the standing legs and can. If you like, you can even put half an onion inside the chicken before you do this for some extra flavor.

I used the Napoleon basting brush ($14) to cover all of the chicken (don’t forget to get into all the nooks and crannies) with the marinade. After which, I inserted the marinade injector ($19.90) into a few different meaty areas of the Chicken.

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Leave the chicken to soak up the marinade for a bit and use this time to light up the grill. I put the grill (Napoleon Lex485RSIB) at medium heat on 2 of the burners and I used my Napoleon Heat Resistant Gloves ($75) to place the chicken and roaster between them. It’s such good protection that I wasn’t afraid to get anywhere near the fire!

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I closed the hood and left it there for about 25-30 minutes, opening it up every 7 minutes to check on the chicken and to baste it with the marinade so it keeps moist and tasty. I also used a smoker cup ($45) with beer flavoured wood chips ($20) from Axtschlag to give it a smoky flavor.

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When the chicken was done, I took it off the grill and used the Napoleon Digital Thermometer ($29.90) to make sure (it’s done when the internal temperature is at 165 Degrees Fahrenheit or 75 Degress Celcius). It was so tender and juicy because of the marinade that had been injected into it, and the skin was crispy all over because it was exposed to the flames all around. Overall, it was a very delicious chicken and I would do it again!

To purchase any of these products, check out libertypatio.com or visit Butcher’s Dog (Great World City), Zac Butchery (Chun Tin or Figaro St) or Decofix (Serene Centre).

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Got Wood? BBQ Smoker chips, wood planks, sawdust and more!

Recently, I’ve been getting a lot of enquiries about where to find smoker wood chips in Singapore. Most people either don’t know where to find them or if they know where to look, it’s just too unaffordable.

I’ve found the easiest and most affordable place to get my BBQ wood products is from Liberty Patio, because it also has the widest range I’ve seen so far.

You can get everything from Wood Chips to wood planks, grilling papers to herb boxes.

You’ll be able to find more famous BBQ brands such as Char-broil and Napoleon that charge about $14 per bag of woodchips, to gourmet brands that specialise in smoking products like Axtschlag and Best of the West.

My personal favourite is the new brand on the market — Axtschlag. Hailing from Germany, Axtschlag offers one of the widest ranges of BBQ wood products I’ve seen.

Axtschlag Wood Chips

New to Singapore, Axtschlag has flavours like Hickory, Apple, Wine, Beer, Whiskey, Beech, Alder and Cherry.

I’m absolutely crazy about the artwork on the packaging that teaches me how to use the products. The sassy lady is such a fun addition to the whole BBQ scene!

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I love the sassy artwork on the Axtschlag packaging.

Axtschlag carries more unique flavours such as Walnut, Wine, Strong beer and Whiskey. These go for $20 per kilo.

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Axtschlag’s gourmet flavours include Wine, Walnut, and Beer. $20 a KG.

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Other Axtschlag products include sawdust and grilling planks.

Looking for Sawdust and Grilling planks? Sawdust costs $18 a bag, and grilling planks start from $28.

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My favourite products in the Axtschlag range – Herb boxes!

Herb boxes and their refills keep this brand interesting. You can get them for meat or fish. These 30cm boxes contain herb mixtures of boldo leaves, rosemary, sage, lavender, red chilli, curry leaves OR birch leaves, lemon balm, lemon, dill, carrots, corn flower. Just place the food you’d like to smoke on these boxes and watch as the flavours take over once the smoking begins.

These are $32 a box, and $15 for the herb refill.

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Lastly, Axtschlag also carries grilling papers for $18 a packet. Each packet contains 8 pieces of wood paper. Just tie the wood paper around the prepared food and put them on the grill to smoke. Cherry flavour is my favourite with thai prawn paste chicken wings.

Check out all these items on Liberty Patio.

Till my next post! Enjoy Smokin’ on your grills!

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BBQ Grill Planks: We be PLANKING!!!

Lately, I’ve been experimenting with Grilling Planks on my BBQ because I was sent some samples from Axtschlag BBQ wood company in Germany and I must say, it’s been pretty fun!

Grill Planks come in different types of flavours – the flavours that I got were Red Cedar Wood and Cherry. But I only tried out the Red Cedar wood this time.

Here’s how I used it:

Step One: Soak the plank for about 30 minutes in water. Most instructions will tell you about 60 minutes, but I felt 30 minutes in our humidity was enough. You can also soak it in juice if you like.

Soak the plank for about 30 minutes.

Step Two: Marinate the chicken wings. I used a Thai Prawn paste marinade which I got from Golden Mile Complex at Beach Road because it’s one of my favourite seasonings.

Them Chicken Wings!

Step Three: Remove the plank from the water and place it on top of the fired up grill. Place the chicken wings directly on the grilling plank. Close hood and let wings smoke on top of the plank. Check in every 5 minutes to see how the chicken is cooking and flip it over after 10 minutes. It should take about 25 minutes for the chicken to be fully cooked.

You can reuse the planks too!

Results: Thai Western Barbecued Wings! These wings were smoked directly on the planks which I feel, definitely gives it an advantage of just using wood chips in a smoker box. Plus, it’s a lot faster in achieving that smokey BBQ effect. It’s so easy to use and the results are just fantastic. It’s especially wonderful because the juices really get locked into the meat because of the indirect cooking, while avoiding burning the marinade. I also tried this with steak – unfortunately, it didn’t taste as good as the wings I have to say. I think steak still tastes best with it’s own flavour.

Axtschlag isn’t available in Singapore yet (shame! they have quite an extensive variety of other BBQ wood products which I will be reviewing over the next few weeks), but it will be in about 2 months time.

In the meantime, you can get cedar wood planks by Fire & Flavor from Liberty Patio. Enter “BBQLOVE” at checkout to get 15% off this product!

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