Tuesday, January 28, 2020

Product Review: Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill

[FTC Standard Disclosure]  I received an Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill free of charge for review purposes.  All content and opinions are my own and have been neither reviewed nor approved by Oklahoma Joe's before publishing.  This is what I'd tell you if you asked me about it while we hung out grilling on my deck.

Last year, Oklahoma Joe's shook up their decades-old classic line-up of offset smokers by adding their new drum smokers, the Bronco and Bronco Pro.  This year, they continue growing with the exciting addition of their line of pellet cookers, the Rider 600, Rider 900, and the Rider DLX pictured below.

Review of the Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill
The Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX is a hoss!  It boasts 1,234 square inches of cooking space making it the biggest pellet cooker that I have used.

While pellet grills have been around for quite a long time, they have more recently become mainstream and now show up in big box stores and backyards across America.  The allure of pellet grills is that they have gas grill simplicity and convenience but the real-wood flavor of a traditional pit or grill.

How Pellet Grills Work

Pellet grills work by burning wood pellets - real wood pieces that have been compressed or extruded into a uniform shape and size.

  • Hopper - Contains the pellets until needed for cooking.
  • Controller - The "brains" of the operation, it is an electric controller that monitors the temperature inside the cooking chamber and controls the fan and auger.
  • Auger - A type of Archimedes screw that moves the pellets when needed from the hopper to the burn pot.
  • Burn pot - A small pot where the pellets drop and burn, creating heat and real-wood smoke. 
You set the controller for a specific cooking temperature, let's say 250°f.  The controller uses a feedback loop that keeps asking if the temperature is 250°f.  If below, it adds more pellets to burn, and if it is above, it stops adding pellets.  The fan stokes the fire and circulates the smoke, providing even cooking temperatures like a convection oven.  There's a lot of science and math that go into it, but that's the basic idea.

Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill going through it's warm up process


Assembly was straight forward and took just under 1 hour for me at a leisurely pace.  The instructions were clear, and the fasteners were clearly identified.  Much of the work is pre-assembled at the plant, making your job much easier.

Assembling the Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX Pellet Grill was relatively easy and quick - 1 hour.
Since the grill is so big, you'll want a good-sized area to spread out and work.  I did ours in the garage.

Monday, January 13, 2020

The OMG Brisket Slider - aka Ooey Mooey and Gooey

[Standard FTC Disclosure]  I received my Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX at no charge.  I am sponsored by Certified Angus Beef® Brand.

Tonight is the college football championship between LSU and Clemson - GO TIGERS!   (Boy, way to commit, Chris.)

I have the perfect Game Day food for you - the Ooey, Mooey, Gooey Brisket Slider - or for short the OMG Brisket Slider.

The OMG Brisket Slider Ooey Mooey and Gooey Krispy Kreme

Why yes, that is deliciously smoked brisket with pepper jack and sharp cheddar on a "grilled cheese" made with a freaking Krispy Kreme donut! 

  • Ooey - As in, you are walking through the office, spot a box and say, "Oooo donuts!"
  • Mooey - Smoked beef brisket
  • Gooey - A blend of your favorite cheeses

The OMG Brisket Slider works too, since the first thing you exclaim when eating it is OMG!

So that's the short version, here's the detail.

The folks at Oklahoma Joe's gave me a killer Christmas gift this year - one of their new Oklahoma Joe Rider DLX pellet grills.  It is the biggest pellet grill I've had, and I couldn't wait to try it out.  I have a full review post coming soon, but this is a BBQ beast.  

The new Oklahoma Joe's Rider DLX pellet grill has 1234 square inches of space
The Oklahoma Joe's Rider - DLX -  The famed offset smoker manufacturer has entered the pellet grill market with 1,234 square inches of BBQ goodness.  Full review coming.

Certified Angus Beef® Brand briskets are my go-to choice when I can get them.

How I Choose My Briskets

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Southwestern Steak, Black Beans and Rice

[FTC Standard Disclosure]  I receive sponsorships and material support from the Certified Angus Beef® Brand.  Any opinions stated are my own.

Sometimes my creative flow is more like a trickle.

Case in point, I had a nicely marbled flat iron steak but I just wasn't feeling the creative spark.  No worries.  I just hopped over to Certified Angus Beef® Brand's recipe page and searched for flat iron steak.  I found a recipe for Southwestern Steak, Black Beans, and Rice and off I went...

Certified Angus Beef's Southwestern Steak, Black Beans and Rice

The flat iron steak (aka top blade) comes from the chuck or shoulder of the steer.  Despite coming from section with an abundance of connective tissue, the flat iron steak is one of the more tender cuts of beef right up there with the tenderloin and teres major.  

It's also my Achilles heel in butchery.  I've tried to break one out two times and both times I botched it.  Diana Clark, the in-house Meat Scientist at Certified Angus Beef® Brand, was kind about my less than successful meat processing efforts but I know she was just being nice.  Fortunately for me, I can often find flat iron steak at the meat counter.

Recipes for certified angus beef brand flat iron steak.
The steak portion of the recipe is quite simple - pepper, cumin, salt, and ancho chile.