Sunday, May 3, 2015

Cleaning Up The Smoker

I wish I'd taken a "before" and "after"  photo of DH's smoker that I cleaned yesterday.  It's a Cook Shack similar to this one: 

These are manufactured here in Oklahoma and we have really enjoyed using it for the last few years. 

However, the smoke residue builds up inside quickly and it's a pain in the butt to clean.

We've tried various types of oven cleaners, spray cleaners and degreasers as well as Magic Eraser sponges and none of them have worked as well as the Easy Off Heavy Duty oven cleaner.

I sprayed it onto the inside as well as the racks and the smoke just melted right off.

Since I wasn't 100% sure if it contained any caustic ingredients, I did thoroughly rinse the inside of the smoker with vinegar water.  Vinegar neutralizes acids. Then I rinsed it with plain water to remove any traces of vinegar.

DH and I have had a running battle about cleaning the smoker's interior.  His theory is that the smoke needs to build up to "season" the smoker, sort of like having a seasoned cast iron skillet.

He's used the smoker for too many years without getting it cleaned thoroughly and I felt that the smoke build up was causing the "Q" to have a slightly bitter taste.

He spent a couple of hours using some degreaser to clean it last week but it didn't get all the smoke build up. Yesterday I started out with hot water and a spray cleaner with a Magic Eraser and got a lot more off.  That's when I sent him to pick up some oven cleaner to try.

I sprayed the cleaner inside the cold oven and the smoke residue just melted right off.  Guess I'll be keeping a can of this on hand from now on.  It sure made a nasty job easy and quick! 

****NOTE TO SELF----next time wear gloves!****  I stained my cuticles and nails so badly that it took bleach to get them clean!

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