Kamado Joe "MoJoe" NewscastJanuary 2011   

Kamado Joe Company
4034 Enterprise Way
Flowery Branch, GA 30542
(877) 215-6299

    
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Recipe: Chicken Cordon "True" Bleu
A variation of a classic recipe.
Despite the French name, chicken cordon bleu is actually an American creation that's been a popular entree since the 1960's.

The original recipe calls for ham to be rolled inside a chicken breast with Swiss cheese melted on top. This recipe is a variation of the original in an open face style that uses prosciutto (ham) and bleu cheese. Of course, if you're not a fan of this pungent cheese you can use your favorite semi soft cheese. Gouda is a nice substitute.

Ingredients
– 4 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
Olive oil
Coarse sea salt
Ground black pepper
1 package of prosciutto (or eight thin slices)
1 package bleu cheese (block or crumbled)*
  * Substitute with any other semi soft cheese

Instructions
1. Preheat grill to 400°F (204°C).
2. Place each breast between a sheet of plastic wrap and pound to 3/8 inch thickness.
3. Brush each side of the breasts with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste.
4. Place the breasts over direct heat for 3-4 minutes.
5. Flip the breasts over and move them to the outer areas of the grill grate for indirect cooking.
6. Place two pieces of prosciutto on each breast, then 2-3 thin slices of blue cheese.
7. Close the top vent fully to slowly lower the temperature.
8. Grill for 8-10 minutes.

Serve immediately



100 Ways to Grill Chicken
A year's worth of recipes to choose from.
Chicken is such a staple in today's diet and for good reason. It’s inexpensive, delicious and lends itself to an infinite amount of creative recipes.

One website, Razzle Dazzle Recipes stands out as quite an inventive source for chicken recipes with names like Motor Oil Chicken, Angry Chicken and Iced Tea Chicken. They also have a number of other recipes for turkey, lamb and side dishes.

 
* Derald Schultz, Kamado Joe



Product Review: Thermapen
Fast, accurate...and expensive.
I started my search for a cooking thermometer with a certain amount of bias. I've been an outdoor cooker for 30 years who has relied on time, external temperature and my own cooking instinct for doneness. To me, it almost seems like cheating to use a thermometer.

I searched Amazon’s website to read reviews on a number of thermometers. I have seen the ads for the Thermapen and I was intrigued by the reviews yet a little apprehensive about the cost ($96). Should something so simple cost so much? Apparently.  In the Thermapen’s defense, it is the thermometer used on America’s Test Kitchen TV show and it's also used and recommended by Cooks Illustrated.

The 56 Amazon reviews were overwhelmingly in favor of the product and there were only three negative reviews related to breaking after the one-year warranty and one reviewer who allowed liquid to seep into the electronics. The Thermapen is promoted as water-resistant not water-proof; you cannot submerge it water.

Each Thermapen is assembled and calibrated by hand in England and it's available in eleven colors. The Thermapen includes a handwritten calibration certificate, 20-page guide and a handy laminated temperature chart for a variety of meats, foods and candy. The 20-page guide is a 15 minute read and well worth the time. It details what the Thermapen does (fast accurate temperatures) and what it does not do (It won't lock in on a reading). The guide also offers some good instructions on cooking such as finding a target temperature and the importance of resting meat after cooking.

I was surprised by the size of the Thermapen; it was twice as large as I expected. I assumed it was the size of a pocket knife, but it's 6" long. The size allows for a large digital readout that's very readable. It has an auto-off featur
e so if you leave the probe extended it will shut itself off in 10 minutes. You can disable this feature with a switch located inside the battery case and there are three other adjustments for changing the readout to °C, adjusting the readout to whole numbers (no tenths) and a trim adjustment to recalibrate, but this should not be necessary.

Testing
First, I used the ice bath and boiling tests recommended in the guide and the Thermapen passed easily. Water boils at different temperatures based on you elevation; the higher the elevation the lower the temperature. It’s 212°F at sea level, but in Denver Colorado it's 202.7°F. The ThermoWorks website has a handy calculator to determine your boiling point. Based on my elevation it should be 210.55°F and it fell within a tenth of a degree on either side of the target. As I mentioned, the Thermapen does not lock onto a specific number. It will give you a correct temperature within three seconds, but it constantly adjusts itself as it reads temperature.

Over the last month I used the Thermapen on a variety of meats and cooking methods. I've used it on steaks to get the center to medium rare at 125°F, then let it rest five minutes for a final temperature of 132°F. Perfect. I also slow cooked a pork tenderloin to medium at 140°F by pulling it off at 133°F, wrapping in aluminum foil and allowing it to rest for 10 minutes for a final temperature of 139°F. Perfect again. In all the other tests the Thermapen gave a final temperature within three seconds, which is nice if you’re cooking at a high temperature.

Pros:
– 3-second readings
– High level of accuracy
– Water-resistant design
– °F to °C reconfigurable
– 0.1° resolution full range to 572°F
– Instant on/off when the probe is extended
– 1,500 hour battery life
– Handy laminated temperature guide
– Big clear digital readout
– Auto shut-off feature

Cons:
– High Cost (depending on your budget)
– Designed for right-handed users (clumsy if you’re left-handed)
– No display light for cooking after dark
– One-year warranty (should be two-year given the price)

The Last Word
The Thermapen does everything it promises. It offers almost instantaneous temperatures that are easy to read and accurate. The reviews and recommendations for the Thermapen say it is worth the price, but that's up to the individual. A couple of years of use will tell me if it was worth the investment.

If you can’t swallow the price tag there are other flip stick style thermometer models on the market by Fisher and VWR. The latter states an accuracy of ±1.0°C for $30 or an accuracy of ±0.3°C  for $50. Search Google or Amazon for “flip stick thermometer”.



* Derald Schultz, Kamado Joe




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