Well, you asked for it. Here, Smoky answers the most commonly asked questions. He is direct, honest and offers an insight into the time proven techniques to preparing great barbecue that is unavailable elsewhere. If you are unable to locate the exact answer you are seeking, feel free to contact him directly and ask!
He returns all questions . . . . . . .
Topic: Using a gas BBQ grill for smoking.
From: Marguerite Hayward,
Subject: Re: Smoking in gas grill
I could use your help.
I know I have read in your articles about how you can use your gas BBQ grill for smoking. I am refeering to mostly salmon at this point. I have gotten the case iron box that you put the chips in and a thermometer to connect to my grill top. What I have not seen yet is exactly how it is recomended to do this. How? How long? Ect. I just ordered one of your smoking cookbooks thinking that was going to tell me and it did not.
Can you please give me some ideas, and tell me if you have a good book on it. Also interested in curing recipes.
Marguerite, Darlin' Marguerite,
Pardon, please. You have never read in my articles about a gas barbcue. A gas grill, perhaps, that with some ingenuity can approximate the effect of barbecuing, but never in my whole life have I even considered the possibility that there might even exist such a thing as a gas barbecue. (Please read the glossary)
However, having a gas grill, a book and a cast iron smoker thing, we'll help you get the best out of your acquisitions.
First, there are at least three FAQs posted covering different treatments and cures for salmon. Because of your equipment, you will probably be hot smoking, rather than cold smoking. A couple of the FAQs cover variations of that.
I recommend that you also consider broiling salmon without any cure as a simple way to prepare a delicious meal.
First, filet the salmon and cut it into pieces of approximately the uniform thickness. Place in a non-reactive container-with-cover, and coat thoroughly with a mixture of 1/2 lemon juice and 1/2 light olive oil. Cover and refrigerate for 1/2 - 2 hours or you may cook it as soon as the grill is ready.
To prepare the grill, load your smoker gadget with green oak, hickory, apple, alder, or what ever turns you on. Dry wood or chunks should be soaked for 1-6 hours. Light up the grill, close the lid and turn to maximum heat. Remove the salmon from the 'fridge. You will need a spatula with an opposing arm for turning, a basting brush and a platter upon which to placed the grilled filets. A couple of margueritas (classica, naturalamente) are optional. When the grill begins to smoke rather generously, open it up, let the smoke clear enough for you to see what you are doing, and place the filets carefully on the grill.
If you had a very hot charcoal grill, you would leave the top open. With the gas grill, you will probably need to close the lid. Savor the marguerita and check the fish in about 3 minutes. The bottom surface should be beginning to firm up. Check one corner - gently - to determine (1) is it stuck. If it is close the lid for a bit. (2) Is there any browning. If it is stuck, there will be no browning, but when there is browning, and the fish readily releases the grill, baste the top side and gently turn it over. Smoke should be rather heavy and constant. When all are turned, close the lid finish off the first marguerita while you relax for about 3 minutes.
Repeat the inspection as before. Baste and gently turn when ready. Discover the 2nd marguerita. After about 3 minutes, baste and turn for the last time. Enjoy the remains of the margueritas.
Remove carefully to a warm plate. Serve at once. Salt and fresh ground pepper are optional. A chilled wine capable of contending with superb aromas and flavors would be welcome.
On subsequent occasions, you may want to consider lightly sprinkling the salmon, before grilling with combinations of some of the following seasonings. Garlic powder, onion powder, freshly chopped dill leaves, fresh thyme leaves, rosemary, ground bay leaves, ground coriander, freshly grated ginger, zest of orange, etc. But, I recommend that you make taste slowly and not overpower the natural flavor of salmon.
Have one for me,