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Smoked anything is so dang delicious but so hard to make. Right? Wrong! With a little DIY action and some smokey know-how, you can make your very own smoker and start feasting on homemade trout, almonds, ribs, oysters, and almost anything else that would do well with a flavor blast reminiscent of a campfire. And with tailgating season in front of us, it’s time to get going. So say goodbye to bottled liquid smoke and say hello to all the hungry people with empty plates.
You can buy a smoker for your backyard or easily fashion your BBQ or grill into one. Or, you can follow the sage advice of Food Network personality and resident geek, Alton Brown who shows us how to create a beauty of a smoker using easily accessible materials from a hardware store and spend only $47.32 to do it. The terracotta is a nice touch. Check this out:
Seems totally easy, right?
Smoking In The Oven
Now we turn to famous food activist and culinary-everyman, Mark Bittman. In an episode of The Minimalist, Bittman’s New York Times video series, he shows us how you can create a large tented pan to slide in your oven. He uses ribs as his nom du jour, but with the newfound know-how of smoking, you can now use any hunk of meat or fish. Check out what Bittman has to say:
Smoking On The Stovetop
Looking for less of a commitment than a 3 hour cook time? Perhaps you only want to do a small slab of fish, a couple of chicken legs or a couple cups of almonds. A stove-top smoker might be more your speed. If you have a wok and some tin foil, you’re already halfway there. Check out this Chow Tip from the series that brings you handy short videos on cooking:
It’s almost too easy.
Recipes for Smoked Foods
Smoked chicken, turkey, beef, pork and salmon are probably what you think of when you fantasize about smoked foods. But now that you are on your way to a DIY Smoking Spectacular, here are some recipes that aren’t the typical go-to’s to help get your tastes budding and your creative juices flowing.
Smoked Oysters with Olive Relish
Oysters are a treat in any season. If you don’t eat them raw (which you totally should), try them smoked. Adding layers of flavor with the smoke and olive relish is like a complex symphony for your mouth.
Having homemade smoked almonds at your next cocktail party will ensure your speedy induction into the host hall of fame.
Smoked Stuffed Jalapeño Peppers
Cheese + bacon + spice + smoked = crazy delicious. Why can’t superbowl parties happen every weekend?
A smoked cheese add a stronger, meatier taste to any meal. Whether it be cheddar, gouda, mozzarella or provolone, any mild to strong cheese will take on whole new meaning from getting a quick cold smoke.
Salmon usually gets the smoke love but trout is an excellent deviation. And because Alton Brown has treated us well so far, here’s a goodie from the nerd himself.
What Are You Smoking?
Or even better, what are some of your favorite smoked foods? We heard something interesting about smoked cocktails. Who’s got the skinny on those?