Published June 13, 2012
Holy smoke! Author says it’s another seasoning
If you’re trying your hand at smoking (on the grill, of course), Jamie Purviance, author of the new “Weber’s Smoke: A Guide to Smoke Cooking for Everyone and Any Grill” (Sunset, $21.95), has answers to some frequently asked questions. What is smoking all about? It’s basically about a little bit of heat, a little bit of wood and some food. Doesn’t it require hours of cooking time? No. It’s as simple as when you’re making your steak or pork tenderloin. Soak some wood chips and add a handful or two to the charcoal. Witness the difference it can make. It provides a wonderful background to the food. So many people think it requires hours of cooking and clouds of smoke. What type of wood is best, and how should you prepare it? A mild moderate strength wood on something like chicken would be apple, oak or hickory. Mesquite would become too intense — almost turning the chicken bitter. I think hickory is the most useful for a variety of foods. It’s nice, and people are familiar with it. Wood chips need to be soaked in water at least 30 minutes so they will not ignite or burn. Wood chunks should be about the size of your fist and don’t require soaking. They tend not to ignite.