So you may recall my post on my foray into farming. I now have ducks and geese in addition to the chickens, but the pigs have become yummy, yummy bacon -- in fact, lots of yummy bacon, pork chops, ribs, roasts, and everything else you might expect. About 600 pounds of pork now completely fills my chest freezer. I won't have to worry about what's for dinner for quite some time.
Suffice it to say, I enjoy the pigs much more on my plate than in the back 40, but this presented another problem -- a tasty experience at a friend's cabin made me realize that I needed a smoker to properly prepare all this wonderful meat. I did some research, headed out to a few local places, and weighed my options. The smoker I actually wanted was at Sears, but at $179, it was more than I wanted to spend. A few hours after visiting the store, I checked the Sears.com Web site and found the same smoker, which was apparently on a Web-only sale for $159. Now we're talking. I then added some hickory chips and a cover to my order, and received another $15 off the total order, seemingly out of nowhere. Now we're definitely talking. I could taste the smoked ribs already.
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But what's this? At checkout, I could use PayPal to pay? Color me surprised. I elected to pick up all the items locally rather than ship them, and the site verified that everything was in stock. I was also asked if I wanted to receive a text message when my order was ready to pick up. I filled in that info, and submitted the order at 5:25 p.m.
Fifteen minutes later, my phone chirped, and the text message was from Sears, saying my order was ready. I hopped in my truck, headed down to the store, and used a touchscreen order pickup system. Within about two minutes, a fellow wheeled out my new smoker and accessories, and loaded it into my truck. I checked the time -- it was just shy of 6 p.m.
It took about an hour to build the smoker, and just after 7 p.m., I was all done. That's about 90 minutes from hitting the buy button -- quite impressive by any standard. It was a bit late to fire up the smoker that night, but the next night was full of smoked rib goodness. I'm suddenly quite interested in trying my hand at homemade rubs, mops, and sauces. After all, I have plenty of meat to experiment with.