Smoking on the Barbecue
Smoking on the Barbecue.
Smoking on the barbecue has become ever increasingly popular in the last couple of years. And while many may think of the dedicated smoker like the Weber Smokey Mountain Cookers, which does make low and slow smoking a lot easier and hassle-free, you can still feel like a pit-master by simply smoking on your charcoal kettle or Weber gas barbecue.
Smoking on a Weber gas barbecue.
In order for you to add the smokey flavour to your food whilst cooking on your gas barbecue, you will need a Universal Smoker box and your choice of flavoured wood chips. When you are ready to cook, soak the wood chips as instructed on the packaging, add them to the smoker box and drain off excess water. Place the smoker box on top of one of the flavorizer bars (whilst the barbecue is cold), if you have a Weber Q barbecue, then place the smoker box directly onto your cooking grate. Turn the barbecue on, put the lid down and get it up to your desired temperature. Please note, it is essential that the smoker box is placed on a flavorizer bar with a burner underneath, and that said burner is turned on. Once preheated (about 10mins later) you should start to see smoke appear from the smoker box when you see the smoke, you can place your food on the barbecue, close the lid and cook as you usually would. It is important not to add your meat before you see the smoke, as the outside of your meat will seal off and you will not impart any smoke flavour into the meat. Once you are done with the cooking, and the smoker box has cooled down, you can then dispose of anything which is left in it.
Smoking on a Weber charcoal barbecue.
When you want to smoke on your Weber charcoal barbecue, you do not need a smoker box; you simply need to choose what wood you would like to smoke with! Light your barbecue as you normally would and pour in your charcoal. While your charcoal is lighting, you can soak the wood chips in water as explained on the packaging. When you are ready to cook simply scatter the soaked and drained wood chips over the hot charcoal, close the lid and wait for 5 - 8 minutes until you see smoke start to billow out from under the lid, then open the lid, place the food on the barbecue, close the lid and cook as normal. Like with the gas barbecues it is important not to add your meat to early or you will not get the smoked flavour into your meat.
Both of these instances are quick smoking, which is ideal for adding flavour to things like burgers, sausages, steak and chicken. For longer cooks like pulled pork, brisket etc. a smokey mountain cooker is going to make the job a lot easier, and you would use wood chunks, rather than chips for a prolonged period of smoke.
Smoking wood chips for Weber barbecues.
In the range of wood chips from Weber, you will find nine different kinds of wood, all providing you with a different flavour profile, and all suitable for smoking different things. In order of appearance above the flavours are:
Beech: Beech is a mild and versatile flavour. Recommended for smoking fish, vegetables, poultry, pork, beef and lamb.
Beef Blend: The beef smoking blend is a mixture of nutwood, broadleaf and fruitwood chips, tailormade to suit any cut of beef.
Whiskey: Made from chopped up whiskey barrels these wood chips give off quite a strong flavour and is recommended for smoking fish, vegetable, poultry, pork, beef and lamb.
Cherry: The cherry wood chips have quite a mild flavour to them, but provides a stunning colour to the smoke ring. They are recommended or smoking Fish, vegetables, pork beef and lamb.
Pork Blend: The pork blend is a mixture of fruitwood and broadleaf wood chips. It has a medium flavour in is perfect for smoking any kind of pork.
Apple: This is one of the mildest woods you can smoke with, it is therefore only recommended to smoke fish, vegetables, poultry, pork and cheese.
Mesquite: With a medium flavour, mesquite is mainly recommended for the smoking pork, lamb, game and beef.
Seafood Blend: This is a mixture of broadleaf and fruitwood chips which has been balanced to go perfectly with seafood. It has a mild flavour so as to not overpower the seafoods' flavour.
Hickory: Considered by many to be the 'original' smoking wood, hickory has a strong flavour and is recommended to use when smoking Fish, vegetables, poultry, pork, beef and lamb.