What’s one thing in barbecue that separates the beginners from the pros? Smoke.
Smoke is what gives barbecue its flavor and what separates it from other types of cooking. In modern times we use charcoal or gas to get the heat we need to grill food, but to get smoke, you’ve gotta have wood. Wood chips (or chunks) are what create the smoke you need to give flavor and aroma to your barbecue. It can be added to your grill in the form of logs, chunks or chips. At Dot’s Ace Hardware in Texarkana, we sell a variety of the latter two.
Chips vs. Chunks?
How to decide? Well, how long will you be cooking your food? Chips burn quicker than chunks, so if you just need 20-30 minutes of smoke, chips will work just fine. If you are going to be smoking for an hour or longer, then chunks would be better (unless you want to keep monitoring your fire and having to add more wood).
Certain types of wood better complement certain meats, here are some ideas:
- Apple Wood – A lighter wood with fruity flavor. Uses: Poultry or pork.
- Hickory Wood – A full smoky flavor, the classic smoking wood. Uses: Everything, especially meats.
- Mesquite Wood – The strongest smoke flavor, very popular here in Texas. Uses: Red meat.
- Maple Wood – Maybe the sweetest smoke flavor. Uses: Poultry or pork.
- Cherry Wood & Other Fruit Woods – Distinct mild-sweet flavor. Uses: Poultry or pork.
For a mild flavor, chips can be placed directly on top of charcoal. To produce a heavier smoke flavor, chips can be soaked in water then drained before being added to smokers or charcoal grills.
Whether you are a barbecue pro or not, using wood chips is sure to make you look like one.
Stop by and see us at 3411 Richmond Road or enjoy site-to-store shipping from AceHardware.com.