Following New Braunfels smoker instructions ensures the longevity and safe use of the unit. Properly season the smoker before the first use to prevent damage to the unit and the chance of meat having a metallic flavor. Do not allow the smoker to become too hot while cooking as this results in damage. A regular cleaning and re-seasoning maintenance routine will prolong the life of a New Braunfels smoker.
Use a soft brush to coat the entire inside of the smoker, grills and grates with a quality vegetable oil. Stack two pounds of charcoal on the fire grate. Pour lighter fluid on the charcoal and allow the lighter fluid to soak in for at least five minutes before lighting the coals. Leave the lid open while waiting to avoid trapped fumes. Trapped fumes may result in a flash fire when opening the door and lighting the charcoal.
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Add more charcoal as needed until there is a small fire. Do not let charcoal touch the sides of the smoker. Position the dampers on the firebox and the smokestack so that they are ¼ of the way open. Close the smoker door, ensuring it seals properly. The seasoning process takes at least two hours to complete.
To begin using the New Braunfels smoker, remove the cooking grill and build a pyramid of charcoal and wood chips on the fire grate. Light the coals. After the fire has died down and 80 percent of the coals have a covering of ash with a glowing center, place the cooking grill back in the smoker. Deep red coals indicate that the temperature will be too hot. Do not use the smoker if temperatures exceed 450 degrees Fahrenheit; this will damage the unit. Spread the coals out or carefully remove some if the fire is too hot.
Place the meat on the cooking grill and close the door. Adjust the firebox and smokestack dampers to control heat and the amount of smoke within the smoker. Open the door as little as possible; opening the door allows heat and smoke to escape and prolongs cooking times.
Clean the New Braunfels smoker after each use. After the smoker has completely cooled off, wash the inside of the smoker and the grilling grates with soapy water. Thoroughly rinse the unit and grates with clean water. Ensure that no brush bristles or lint remains in the smoker. Allow the smoker to air dry. Apply a light coating of vegetable oil to the inside of the smoker. This will prevent the unit from developing rust on the inside when left out in the elements without a waterproof cover. Use a heat resistant spray paint designed for grills to touch up spots on the outside of the smoker as needed. Heavily used New Braunfels smokers require re-seasoning every few months.