To give salmon, chicken, or other food a smoky flavor try this tip next time you fire up your grill. The choice of wood can impact the flavor dramatically. Hickory, apple, cherry, and oak are good choices. Mesquite is very pungent and can overpower fish but might be fine for chicken or meat. Avoid soft or resinous wood like pine, fir, and construction products.

Note the food is not grilled but roasted using indirect heat since the smoke box sits between the food and heat source. Fish cooks very fast and this is the best way to infuse plenty of smoke flavor without over-cooking.

Salmon prep:
• season with creole seasoning (Emeril's "Bam")
• coat with seasoned mayo
(1/4 cup mayo + 1 tsp toasted sesame oil + 1 tsp lemon juice)
• top with roasted sesame seeds

Click photos to enlarge.


Cut wood to fit your pan.
Thin sticks = more surface area = more smoke faster. Thick sticks = longer duration of smoke. Place sticks in a metal cake pan. Mine is 8x8 aluminum.


Cover tightly with
heavy duty foil
and seal well.

Puncture foil with small holes or slits in several places.


Remove grill grate and
place smoke box on the
flavorizer bars in the
hottest part of your grill.

(3-burner Weber shown)


Heat grate on right
if you want grill marks.

When smoke appears,
slide grate left over
smoke box before placing
fish or chicken on grate.

IMGP0786 Place the food to be grill-smoked on the grate right over the smoke box. Close the grill lid to create an oven to roast the food.

Plate directly from the grill to avoid damage by transferring food more than absolutely necessary.

Guild the lilly with fresh asparagus and hollandaise.

Warning: Smoke contains carcinogenic compounds and regularly consuming smoked food may increase your risk for certain kinds of cancer. As Mom used to say, "Everything in moderation."

Cooking Tips

>Cook with Wine
Use wine and spirits to boost flavor!

>Fresh Herbs
Many home cooks use dry herbs, some old enough to be in small metal tins! It's time to move past the quick and easy and try some fresh herbs.

>Grill Smoke
Use this clever trick to add smoke flavor to grilled food.

>Hang your Pots and Pans
Make every pot and pan easy to get... covers too!

>Home-made Stock
Next time you want chicken, buy the whole bird. Then make chicken stock using my simple recipe. You'll never buy that canned stuff again!

>Lapsang Souchong Tea
In A New Way to Cook, Sally Schneider extolls the virtues of lapsang souchong tea to make smokey tea essence.

>Measure by Hand
Learn what a TSP and TBS look like in your hand to speed up cooking.

They've been said to be like a cross between an onion and garlic, but they're really their own thing. Just get some, and cook with them. You'll never look back!

>Sharp Knives
If you have a sharpener, this tip doesn't even cost you a cent... unless, of course, you cut yourself in the process and end up at the emergency room! If you don't have a sharpener, it's time to invest in one.

>Spice Rack
Maybe it is time to organize your herbs and spices. You can weed out ove-the-hill spices while you're at it.

>Squeeze Bottles
Yea, kind of flashy, almost celebratory, but you can use them like the pros to make things look nice too.

>Steel Cut Oats
What to do with this miserable product if you get caught with a tub.

>True Citrus
Real citrus in crystallized form, available in lemon, lime, and orange. Substitute for zest or extract.

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