Life doesn't always go to plan - and neither do Cobb cooker experiments!
It's been a big day here. We arrived home about 30 minutes before school pick-up time.
I did a couple of quick missions and then drove out to collect Vaughan.
Once home, I had another small window of around 45 minutes before needing to head out again. I started eight heat beads in the Cobb fire-box a little after 4:00pm. They were ready to use about 20 minutes later.
I decided to use some fluid in the moat, while our dinner was roasting - a mix of water, crushed garlic, Worcestershire sauce, mixed herbs and a few sprigs of fresh rosemary. I put the liquid in after the beads had started to grey. (Next time I will pour it in while the beads are still cold)!
I used the new Cobb tonight so placed the meat, potatoes and pumpkin on the fenced roasting rack. I sprayed everything with olive oil and sprinkled mixed herbs and a few rosemary leaves over the meat, as well as seasoning it with salt and pepper. At 4:25pm I put the grill plate and full roasting rack on the Cobb, covered with it's lid and then headed out.
We returned home at 6:30pm, very hungry. Erin had stayed home and commented about all the lovely smells that had been wafting during our absence. Dinner was served al fresco at 7:00pm. We were well and truly ready for it but sadly, it wasn't quite ready for us!
The potatoes and pumpkin were firmer than we would have liked and the meat was far more rare. The eight heat beads were just about dust, so I added an extra five - and returned the meat to the Cobb (after cutting the edges off for our meal). At 9:30pm I removed the meat. It was very well cooked and declared quite tasty by all the samplers. It probably had 4-5 hours of cooking in total.
I've learned a few lessons tonight. The liquid in the moat probably needs to be checked/replenished during the cooking process. Regardless of the recipe notes I'll need to allow a much longer cooking time for us, so the number of beads used initially will increase. I think the size of the potatoes and pumpkin will be fine for several hours of cooking.
The verdict overall - the flavour is great, just some tweaking to timing/method and so on. All of which would have been easier had I been at home supervising the cooking process. Tis a learning curve, for sure but the cost of tonight's experimentation was only $1.30 - gotta be happy with that!
As I've been typing this, I heard some noises outside. The sandy fox was just outside our front door, obviously attracted by the lingering smell of our roast dinner!