Question about mopping

Started by Badger Dave, June 07, 2009, 10:54:12 AM

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Badger Dave

Hi from Wisconsin.  I'm new to smoking, but even though I live in Wisconsin I cook outside year round.

While I'm still in the learning curve on the Bradley, one thing puzzles me.  Some sources - Bill and Cheryl Jamison in Smoke and Spice, for example - say you should never b aste in a water smoker.  In the (cursory) Bradley recipe book basting is clearly suggested.

Can I mop in this smoker?  Should I? Why?

Thanks for the help.


Yes you can mop in the Bradley. Why? it add's flavor and moisture however you dont always have to mop. Some put butts and briskits in a foil pan and cover with foil (boating)

Oh yeah throw that book out  ;D just funning


Badger Dave

Thanks for the help.  Your response raised another question: the Bradley Owners Manual says specifically to never use aluminum foil.  It's really OK to do so?


Quote from: Badger Dave on June 07, 2009, 11:25:53 AM
Thanks for the help.  Your response raised another question: the Bradley Owners Manual says specifically to never use aluminum foil.  It's really OK to do so?

What they are meaning is not to foil the racks or v-tray. Doing this will prevent smoke from getting to the food and may cause smoke and moisture to back up into the smoke generator and cause a malfunction. Wrapping your food is ok. Also never close the vent off completely. Always have 1/2 to full open.


Badger Dave

Hey, thannks again.  I'd never have figured that out from the manual.

Habanero Smoker

As NePas stated you can mop, but each time you open the door it will increase your cooking time. Some members have guesstimated that each time the door is open to mop you can add up to 30 more minutes of cooking time.



Another note not mentioned yet is the Bradley is not really a water smoker.
Click here for our time proven and tested recipes -


I mop a lot - it's just in my blood.  It's the way my forefathers did it - I'm sure of it! - well at least my Dad and Grandad!  My Grandad's family came to Middle Tenn in the late 1700's, staying a while in Appalachia after immigrating from Ireland before getting here.  I guess they learned it in Appalachia.  Some food research done while my daughter was in ETSU, about the area's cooking from long ago, indicated that like most barbecue, they did it over open pits.  And to keep it moist while over the open pit, they mopped.  Seems that it was usually a thin vinegar based mopping sauce sometimes with tomatoes, sometimes with just peppers.  Oh well I got off the subject.  As Habs said, in any cooker, and especially the Bradley, opening the door to mop increases the cooking/smoking time.  However, properly timed, that is not a bad thing.  You don't want to mop the first 3 hours (when recovery time is longest).  You want the rub to set and start forming bark, and you want the meat to absorb all the smoke it can.  Then when the IT hits the 145 to 160 mark, it hits the plateau and the outside of the meat is cooked, that is when I start mopping.  Yes, it lengthens the cook, but the longer the plateau the better - generally!  Near the end of the smoke, the meat is nearing the same temp as the cabinet temp, recovery is faster, so mopping then has less impact on time - but can make a big impact on taste.   
"A man that won't sleep with his meat don't care about his barbecue" Caneyscud

"If we're not supposed to eat animals, how come they're made out of meat?"