Hot smoking food on the braai not only tenderises it, but also infuses it with a wonderful rich flavour. Don’t let the extra stuff required put you off as hot smoking on the braai is easy to learn.
If you want to try out smoking on your regular grill, our guide below will get you started. We’ve also provided tips for beginners and a Smoking Woods Chart to help you match the right woods with specific foods.
PREPARING A CHARCOAL OR GAS GRILL
Virtually all Weber Gas Barbecues can be equipped with or are sold with a smoker attachment (exceptions: Spirit Series and Genesis Junior). The smoker attachment makes it easy to turn your barbecue grill into a hot smoker although you can also improvise with a foil pan.
Before preheating your grill, simply fill the water pan on the smoker attachment with hot tap water. Place pre-soaked wood chunks or chips/twigs in the other compartment or in a foil pan directly on the Flavorizer Bars over the lit burner (use a separate pan for water if you are using a foil pan for the wood pieces).
Begin cooking after preheating and when the grill is fully smoking. You can get a smoker attachment for your grill by visiting your local dealer, or calling Weber Customer Service on (011) 454 2369. Please have your grill model number available.
Try combining woods as you get more experienced for unique and flavourful results.
Use tongs and barbecue mitts to add charcoal, turn meats, refill the water pan or adjust the vents.
Do not use charcoal infused with starter fluid as it can add an unpleasant taste to your smoked foods.
EXPERIMENT WITH WOOD
Experiment with different woods and meats until you find the right combination for your taste.
Keep a smoker’s notebook while experimenting. Jot down ingredients, wood amounts and combinations, and results, so you can repeat successes. Unless, of course, you want to keep your best recipes a secret!
Use a meat thermometer to make sure smoke-cooked foods are done, but not overcooked. Smoke-cooked foods look different than other grilled or oven-prepared foods. They may be pink or red when completely cooked, for example, apple wood will make cooked chicken look red.
Start with a small amount of wood to see how you like the flavour and then add more for more intense smoky taste. Be careful not to overdo it, though: too much wood smoke over long periods can make food taste bitter.