If you love grilling, you’ll go crazy once you start smoking stuff. It’s like the meat cooks itself, and it actually does. Cooking meat with indirect heat as it is infused with smoke is an art form.
Smoking meat can be intimidating, and with so many sophisticated smokers and grills with fancy chambers, it’s not a surprise you don’t know where to start — that’s me, by the way. Still, now I’ve perfected the art of smoking cuts of meat on a regular charcoal grill, and today I’ll share what I’ve learned with you.
First things first. You need woodchips, and don’t go using any wood you find, use cooking woodchips that contain no chemicals, fertilizers or pesticides.
You can also choose from a wide variety of smoking wood. Cheery wood and oak are some of the most versatile, but you want to try the fragrant mesquite and the ever-popular applewood, too.
Once you have the wood, you must create the perfect setting to smoke meat over a charcoal grill which means getting the temperature right. Fear not, we’ll get there.
Find a few nice pieces of meat and read on because smoking meat instead of just grilling it will change your life! Everything tastes better when infused with smoke.
Wrap each handful of wood chips in aluminum foil packets. With a fork, pierce the packets a few times. You should have four packets.
Light up the grill and move the embers to one side of the grill to create a hot and a cooler area. Use a thermometer to make sure the temperature at its coolest is between 200°F and 250°F.
Place a woodchip packet over the burning charcoals and change the packet every 30 minutes.
Season the steaks with salt and pepper on both sides, place the meat on the cold area of the grill and close the lid. You don’t need to flip the meat when smoking.
You’ll cook the meat for two hours. One hour exposed, 40 minutes wrapped in aluminum foil, and 20 minutes exposed again. If using barbecue sauce or any other sauce, add it in the last 20 minutes.
Make sure the temperature is still at 200-250°F. Add more coal if necessary. Try to open the grill the least possible. The meat won’t get burned.
After the two hours have passed, check the meat’s inner temperature: 120°F for rare, 140°F for medium, 160°F for well.
When cutting the meat, you should see a ‘smoke ring,’ and it should be infused with the loveliest smoke flavors.