Backyard Smoking: Flames Flavor and Freshness
By Chucky Peters • March 14, 2021 • 6 min read
There is a reason why the average American would prefer a grilling machine to a Ford GTX 80. Yes, I know your eyes bulged but so did your curiosity. However, I doubt you’d still go for the latter after reading through this piece.
The age-long tradition of relaxing over pleasant fumes and dripping oils didn’t come as a fluke. It’s a custom that has passed through generations. It has picked up several improvements and is now even better with recent advancements in technology.
Hence, 75% of Americans would kill for the flavor, flame, and freshness that comes with backyard smoking. Many similar surveys support the above and further supports the point that backyard smoking is not just any other outdoor cooking activity.
Moreover, this is not only because of the extremely high convenience factor. There are other ‘whys’ that warrant the usual gatherings around popping smoke. Chief among them is the enhanced flavor it gives the food, and the entertainment it brings to self, family and friends.
Thus, most Americans commemorate important holidays in the backyard with the gas and charcoal grills in full function.
Care to know more? Then run with me.
Everything you need to know about the Backyard Smoking Ritual
Backyard grilling didn’t come into existence until the mid-twentieth century. Before then, any form of smoking was limited to outside the home events like campsites and picnics.
But, thanks to remarkable advancements in technology, one can enjoy palatable smoked food in the comfort of their patio.
Over the years, Smoking has gone from the crude cross hanging of an animal over burning wood to the more sophisticated gas grills.
Besides, most people think that smoking and grilling are the same. While there may be a substantial similarity, there are slight variations that set them apart.
You could argue that grilling and barbecuing are anchored in the principle of cooking by smoking. More so, they give off an irresistible invitation of smoke and aroma from the drippings on a fire. It’s also the most interesting form of outdoor cooking
Simply put, grilling is a form of smoking that happens on a grilling machine. That may sound like a cliché since both forms of cooking use dry heat application on the food surface. Yet, smoking always leaves its distinctive signature in every food that passes its process.
How Significant is Backyard Cooking in America?
When an event takes the center stage of every major American holiday, it says so much about its significance. Grill lovers cherish it more during popular holidays. During this period, family members come together from all parts of the country to enjoy a smoking steak.
Although 63% of Americans who own a grilling machine use it all year-round, the highest usage (85%) is recorded during holiday gatherings. There are so many important holidays that bring family members together for a Smokey time.
Here’s the exciting thing
While thanksgiving and valentine’s day are worthy mentions, five holidays record the most backyard smoking ceremonies. Thus, Forbes’ five most popular days to grill in no order are July Fourth, Labor Day, Memorial Day, Father’s Day, and Mother’s Day.
Besides, no one would pass the chance to hang out with family over delicious steaks and well-smoked meat.
Hence, the importance of backyard cooking exceeds the flames and flavor from the gas or charcoal grills. It usually transcends to the freshness of dining with friends and family.
Quick question –
Which would you put your money or meat on; Gas grills or wood grills? Which is better? Let’s look at both gadgets and allow you to be the judge.
Gas Grills or Charcoal/Wood Grills - What’s the Best Grill for Backyard Smoking?
A glance at the sub-heading may place the charcoal grill at a great disadvantage. But a closer look at both types of grill exposes their various amazing qualities. Nonetheless, many would still go for the former as 62% of grill owners prefer gas grills.
The reason is very clear, after all, who would love the stress of always stoking up the coals? Thus, gas grills provide a level of convenience that attracts most grill lovers.
However, you can’t compare the flavor you get when you use a charcoal/wood grill. Besides, the wood grill is among the cheapest you could get out there. Hence, some people would go for both since charcoal and wood are cheaper forms of fuel than gas.
There are two types of charcoal you can purchase which are Briquettes and Lump charcoal. Briquettes are shaped like pillows in paper bags and contain sawdust and sodium nitrate. Lumps on the other hand consist of only pre-charred hardwood.
Both offer similar assistance and are affordable. However, the lump charcoal adds a nicer flavor to the food thanks to the charred wood contents.
Next up Safety measures. You won’t want to burn down the entire house just to get some freshly smoked meat. More so, the bushcraft knives, which are essential components of the backyard smoking crew, can spell danger if handled carelessly.
Safety Measure for Backyard Smoking
These standards apply to both backyard smoking and the general practice of outdoor cooking. Besides, it’s best to adhere to them no matter where you set up the gear.
One needs to know these basic measures to avoid the incidence of cooking accidents or food poisoning.
Hence, you should consider lighting your grill the correct way, taking adequate care of food items as well as minding how you swing the knives.
Here are some tips for maintaining safety when smoking in the backyard.
- Never wear loose clothing around fire or grill. Ensure they’re well fitted.
- Always make sure that your grilling spot is in an open area. Outdoor cooking locations should be in well-ventilated areas and not in enclosed spots.
- Ensure that raw meat is secure in plastic bags when taking them to the backyard smoking spot. This would help to prevent contamination from airborne organisms and maintain optimum health for all parties.
- Endeavor to thoroughly thaw any cold food before smoking. And the ones that aren’t going into the fire should return to the refrigerator to avoid the growth of harmful organisms.
- Any food that has gone into the grill or over the fire must complete the process. No half-way smoking or cooking for a later time.
- Avoid using the same plates or bowls for the raw food and cooked food without washing to avoid contact with harmful bacteria from the raw food.
- Ensure you handle the bushcraft knife carefully to avoid injuries and endeavor to wash and keep it properly after use.
- Make sure you cook every meat to the required internal temperature for optimum health. Most persons mistake the browning of the meat’s exterior as the final sign, ensure it’s cooked to perfection.
- Allow charcoals to cool completely before disposing of them. If you have a charcoal grill try to extinguish it properly by covering the lumps or briquettes with water after the smoking exercise.
Nothing beats the harmony and fun family time that comes during outdoor cooking exercises like backyard smoking.
Besides, that’s just one of the perks, as you get to also treat yourself to delicious slices of well-flavored smoked meat. Thus, I believe by now you won’t be considering the ford.
Whether it’s a gas or charcoal grilling machine, the flames waver still, the flavor remains unchanged and the freshness, undisputed