Fire and food
Cooking is an opportunistic benefit of using the CharCone. The primary intended use is to make charcoal. However, there is something about an open, contained wood fire that inspires cooking. It may be a primal instinct to make full use of a rare resource, or a real need to prepare or preserve food. Either way, cooking with a live (wood) fire is still widely practiced and enjoyed in the modern world.
When using the CharCone, the opportunity to cook is all too obvious, and you only need a simple tool and a little practice to take advantage. So why not make the most of it (if you have the instinct)?
There are two good reasons to cook something while making charcoal with the CharCone:
- To enjoy some delicious fire-roasted food
- To comply with local burning ordinances
Open burning ordinances (usually at the municipal level but more and more regional and statewide as well) are the main reason there isn’t more brush and yard waste burned. And for good reason. Besides the obvious danger of fire spreading, there is usually a lot of nasty smoke blowing wherever the wind takes it. It’s a nuisance for the neighbors, and the inefficient low-temp fire creates lots of gasses and particles that end up as pollutants in the atmosphere.
However, if you use the CharCone (or something else like it) you can create a very hot (1500F) smokeless fire in a safe container and that will cause a lot fewer problems. What’s more, if you cook even the smallest thing (e.g. a hot dog or marshmallow) you can say you were having a barbecue, not burning brush and most local officials would agree. So, no smoke + no danger + a little food = a lot less problems.
Simple recipe #1:
Take some food like a hot dog or marshmallow or a pepper and fasten it to a stick (from your brush pile?), a skewer, or specialized tool and hold it to the fire until cooked.
Although the CharCone is intended primarily for use as a charcoal kiln, we have designed it to be easily converted into a grill, a smoker, or for use with a rotisserie kit. Our grill conversion brackets let you use Weber grates and cover to simulate a 22″ kettle grill. Using that same setup with a heat deflector on the charcoal grate transforms the CharCone into a low-temp smoker. With a simple adaptor, the drain pipe and be converted to a port for the BBQ Guru PartyQ, an optional accessory that can automatically control the temperature in the cone. The Auspit, a battery operated camping rotisserie, fits into the built-in port on the leg brackets.