I recently bought the Masterbuild Smoker and the Dadgum Good Cookbook. I am totally new to this cooking method and have some basic questions which don't seem to be answered in the instruction manual or the cookbook. I also watched several YouTube videos and looked at some smoking sites which were no help. Maybe they assume that everyone already knows these things. How should I adjust the vent on top? No one mentions this. Also, should the water pan be in the smoker even though I'm not adding liquid? How do I know whether or not I should be adding liquid? Is it okay to soak the wood chips if I'm not getting much smoke? Can I put the meat in a pan to avoid the dripping mess? Some of the recipes said to smoke until meat reaches a certain temperature, without telling me minutes per pound. That' fine if you don't care what time dinner will be ready, but I want to know. I made ribs and 2 half chickens yesterday as my test run. They were delicious and moist but did not have a lot of smoke flavor. I read to avoid adding too much wood as the food will end up tasting like tree bark. I only put a handful of chips in at the beginning as recommended by the recipe and really did not see a lot of smoke. I guess there is a learning curve, but meat is expensive and a don't want to ruin big hunks of meat. Some beginner guidelines would be greatly appreciated. I'd like to smoke a prime rib next, but I'm a little nervous about ruining such an expensive cut. Thanks in advance for any help.
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