Cooking: A guide to grilling with wood and smoke

(NC) -- Slow smoked chicken, ribs, and brisket are staples of the traditional 'southern barbecue'. The deep smoky flavours and fall-off-the-bone tenderness are hallmarks of the low-and-slow cooking technique. Originally, open pit fires were used for the slow cooking process at low temperatures, but now, a backyard chef can achieve the smoky flavour with a smoker box, wood chips, and a gas barbecue.

Here, the grilling experts at Broil King offer these helpful tips for adding smoky flavour to your next backyard meal:

• Wood chips should be soaked in water for at least an hour before using. Drain them and add them to a stainless steel or cast iron smoker box.

• Fill the smoker box two-thirds with chips and place the box on either the heat plate above the burner or on the cooking grids.

• Add wood chips 5 – 10 minutes before putting your meat on the grill. Raw meats take on smoky flavours much better than even slightly cooked meats. Having a smoky environment to start will enhance and deepen flavours.

• Smoked meats will have a deep pink ring on the outside – this indicates how deep the smoke has penetrated your meat.

• Hickory is probably the most famous smoking hardwood. It imparts a strong hearty flavour to meats and is used mostly to smoke pork shoulders and ribs.

• Mesquite is also one of the most popular woods, it is sweeter and more delicate than hickory, and is a perfect complement to richly flavoured meats such as beef, duck or lamb.

• Apple has a sweet, mild flavour and is used mostly with pork and game, but can be used for poultry as well.

Find a wood flavour pairing guide and delicious recipes at


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