Still smokin!

It’s time to slow things down a bit. I mean low and slow, it’s time to make that charcoal grill into a smoker. Why? Because you want whatever comes off your grill to be tender, juicy, with a flavor that will have you taste buds dancing. A smoker contains the heat and keeps the temperature low enough to slow cook meats (200f-250f). Your charcoal grill can be used as a smoker and Chef Rob is going to tell you how to do it. The first thing you need is patience….

You will also need:

Charcoal, Oven thermometer, Hardwood (such as Oak), Sweet wood branches or chips (applewood, cherrywood, peachwood, hickory, maple the list goes on. The sweet wood chips should be soaked in water first.

Start with a small pile of  charcoal, get it lit and white hot, spread the coals out evenly, then add a few pieces of hardwood, and get them burning.

Once the hardwood has caught a flame and burning down to embers, add some sweet wood, and put the grill on top, with your meat of choice, now close the lid. (Don’t add all the sweet wood, add every 45min-1hr)

It’s time to start smoking….

Controlling airflow is key, so you must make sure your smoker is well vented. Too much smoke will put out the fire. If you don’t have a vent, you will have to do it manually. Keep the lid closed, opening it a tiny bit ever so often to let some air in and some smoke out. Also, watch that temperature if it gets too hot you may want to let some heat out. Practice makes perfect so have fun.

It’s important to start off with smaller pieces of meat before moving on to the larger pieces. The Larger pieces take a bit more patience and practice. I’ve decided to start you off with a recipe for BBQ chicken, Let the smoking begin!

Chicken Marinade

  • ½ C apple juice
  • 6 t soy sauce
  • ¼C honey
  • 1T minced garlic
  • 1 T minced ginger
  • ¼ C dark rum
  • 3lbs chicken pieces

*Marinate overnight

Smokin BBQ Sauce

  • 2C ketchup
  • 2T Worcestershire sauce
  • 1C molasses
  • 3T ginger
  • 3T brown sugar
  • 1T garlic
  • 2t cayenne pepper
  • 2T lemon juice
  • 2t salt

Blend all ingredients in a saucepan; bring to simmer for about an hour, stir occasionally.

What are you favourite summertime BBQ secrets or recipes? Tell us!


3 Responses to “Still smokin!”

  1. Posted on June 18th, 2011

    Great post Rob.

    I know that many people are quite intimidated by the idea of smoking and you’ve made this seem like anyone can give it a go on their little patio deck with a small charcoal hibachi!

    It’d be fun to pit you and Ben in a smoked meat showdown and get Rockin’ Ronnie to judge who’s meat is best! ;-)

  2. Posted on June 20th, 2011

    Yes, indeed! I’m a huge fan of hybridizing my grill as a form of smoker—sometimes to the chagrin of my neighbours. However, I regularly use wood and charcoal smoke in my grill. There are some clever ways to stage wood chips too – like using two containers, one filled with some water too. The water boils off while the other chips are smoking. And, if you time it right, the second set of chips starts to smoke as the first are dying off.

    Also, you want to be careful not to over smoke or you’ll get a nasty acrid taste on whatever you are cooking. I’ve experimented with smoking in my portable Cobb too. Kind of fun, but more work as you have to add coals and wood constantly over a multi-hour cook.

    Oh great, now I’m hungry.

  3. Posted on June 20th, 2011

    I love smoked meat, but like Mark said, it can be intimidating. Rob, do you know if the gear you need is expensive?

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