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Spit Roasting Charcoal

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hey Steven,

 

Thank you so much for taking time out of your busy schedule to hangout with us. I love your show and watch it regularly. I am an avid griller and do a lot of whole animal spit roasting. Growing up Greek I was exposed to spit roasting lambs on a pretty regular basis. As I got older I took to learning the skill. Here is a shot of my Father and I spit roasting a pig for the family a few years back:

 

13a2509a_DSCF1251.JPG

 

My question is about charcoal and what types of fuels you have experimenting with. Do you have a particular brand of charcoal that you prefer? Have you ever made your own charcoal and if so is it worth the effort or are there enough quality commercial brands available that make that unnecessary.

 

 

If you are interested I have two photo galleries that show how I roasted a whole pig and lamb in my photo galleries here: 

http://www.cheftalk.com/gallery/album/index/id/7889

 

 

P.S. Notice the potatoes underneath the pig. ;)

 

Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #2 of 4

NICE! Your pig looks beautiful, and I appreciate the fact that there are potatoes underneath it to collect those flavorful drippings. Your grill interests me, too. Can you tell me what brand it is, or where you acquired it? I will take a look at your gallery a little bit later. Have been doing a radio media tour this morning, so it's been a busy day so far.

 

As for charcoal, I have never attempted to make my own. I wouldn't know how to replicate the oxygen-lean environment that's necessary to produce it. (For an interesting look at how it's done in Chile, see page 134 of Planet Barbecue.) Recently, I have become enamored of Japanese bincho-tan, the finest--and not surprisingly, most expensive--charcoal in the world. You can buy it online from a company called Korin, but last time I checked, it ran about $2 a piece. I hope to import it myself soon and sell it through www.grilling4all.com.

 

Natural lump charcoal is always my choice of fuel when I'm not cooking over wood. One of my favorite online sources is Wicked Good Charcoal. I believe they're located in Maine, but the charcoal is Honduran. I like the fact that it still looks like tree branches, and not scraps from lumberyards. Hope this helps.

 

post #3 of 4
Thread Starter 

Wow, $2 a piece is pretty pricey but I think it is something I will have to give a try. The danger there is once you become hooked on the quality it would be hard to come back. Maybe something I can use for special occasions. I will also take a look at wicked good charcoal thanks for the tip.

 

As for my spit oddly enough it is designed and manufactured by a Greek gentleman in downtown Chicago. His main business is upright vertical broilers that are used for gyros and he started making rotisseries since there was a demand from the Greek community in Chicago (that is my theory anyway). He has a few different flavors of his spit but the design works really well. It can handle around no more than a 65 pound animal but I usually never go that high. I prefer the 40-45 pound range myself. The spit has three tiers and for a 40-45 pound animal you put it on the top rung for 2 hours, the middle is next for 2 more hours and the bottom is between 1/2 hour to an hour depending on how crispy you like the skin.

 

His website is: http://www.xlmanufacturing.net/Rotisseries.asp

 

PS_ HOOKS-2 (1).jpg

 

 

 

Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
Thanks,

Nicko 
ChefTalk.com Founder
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
All About Braising: The Art of Uncomplicated Cooking
Bacon (I made)
(26 photos)
Reply
post #4 of 4

And thanks for a photo and a link to this rotisserie grill. Very lust-worthy. I am going to the website as soon as I hit "SUBMIT". 

 

As for the charcoal, I urge you to give it a try. It burns very cleanly and efficiently. If you go to Korin's website, also check out their small ceramic tabletop grills. (The type of grill bincho-tan was created for.)

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