The holidays are fast approaching, and foods are inevitably part of the merriment! People can enjoy delightful goodies cooked through baking, steaming, grilling, and many other different ways. What’s more, is that you can spice up your holidays by bringing smoked meat to the table!
Smoking food is one of the earliest methods of cooking that has been kept alive up to this day because of the food it offers. Through this way, the food you smoke, especially meats, is tender and rich in flavor due to the considerable amount of exposure they spend in the indirect heat inside the smoker.
The cooking process of this technique may not be as easy as the others, but surely, any person can learn its art. To assist you in getting started, check out these five tips on how to smoke different kinds of meat, a guide perfect for beginners.
Start Preparing Ahead of Time
Preparing ahead of time can assure you that the food you are making will be ready on time, and it might even give you some more to spare. Considering that the times for smoking different meats vary, it is best to get a head start on it as early as possible to avoid any delays.
Keep in mind that some meat cuts may take longer to smoke, and some may be ready earlier, so it is better to create a detailed schedule from what you plan to cook down to what time you intend to serve it and experience a smooth sailing day of preparation for everyone.
Avoid Sneaking a Look
Don’t peek! Peeking inside the smoker several times is one of the beginners’ mistakes when smoking meat cuts. Smoking meat has two essential elements, and these are temperature and smoke. If you keep lifting the lid and checking inside, you will lose both of them, which will lengthen the cooking time and might even ruin your barbeque.
Try to lift the lid as few times as possible to control the two elements. Only lift it when necessary, such as looking after the fire or spritzing the meat. It’s a lot better if you do these things together to avoid raising the smoker’s lid all around.
Keep the Meat Moist
When smoking meat cuts, there are some occasions that it will come out dry if you miss out on doing things during the process. No one enjoys eating dry meat, but don’t fret because there are ways to avoid this!
Keeping the meat cuts moist allows the smoke to stick to it better, adding more flavor. At the same time, it stops it from drying out. You can keep it moist by spritzing or adding a water pan inside the smoker.
Spritzing the surface of the meat every once in a while can prevent the food from drying out. You can spritz water, apple juice, cider vinegar, or whatever you prefer, but remember not to do it too often so that the temperature and smoke are still under control. Another technique is adding an aluminum container with water inside the smoker to maintain a humid environment that keeps the meat from drying.
Be Attentive to the Color of the Smoke
Pay attention to the color of the smoke going out of the chamber. You want to maintain a thin white or thin blue-colored smoke during the cooking process of the meat because this means that your food is being flavored by an aromatic cloud, producing the best-smoked flavor. So, don’t be bothered if the smoke is almost looking clear.
Contrarily, if the smoke comes out thick and white or dark and gray, it means you are not getting the right kind of flavor of the meat since the wood inside the smoker is not getting the appropriate air it needs.
Clean Your Smoker
When you first buy your smoker, you need to go through a process known as seasoning, where one coats the insides of a smoker with oil and heats it in a certain amount of time. Through this, you would avoid tainting the flavor of your food, remove unwanted odors, and make it look brand new for quite a while.
Once you seasoned your smoker, it is vital to get them cleaned up occasionally and take care of its protective coating since its number one rival is rust. One must get rid of any ashes and grease build-ups every after usage because this significantly causes it to rust. Scoop out leftover remnants of food inside, wipe any spilled sauces and juices, and always practice proper food hygiene.
Smoking food is not limited to being served on the holidays, but you can also cook through this technique on various occasions such as birthdays, feasts, or even on just a typical Sunday morning. Don’t forget to apply the five tips given in this guide to make you a better cook and create glorious food all around!