The Chef-Approved Backyard Hack For Aromatic Grilled Meats

Your grill isn't simply a grill. For your next backyard party, consider converting your grill into a smoker with a few strategic additions. Placing soaked oak branches and wood chips inside your barbecue can help infuse your proteins and main dishes with subtle, aromatic, and earthy elements that will complement the natural flavors of your barbecued foods.

Whether you're adding cuttings of vines or pieces of a tree, Chef Charlie Palmer told Forbes that these organic ingredients will start smoking once they catch fire and burn, and a smokey environment that will slowly cook your food will be created. Then, with a slower cook time, your assortment of pork chops and chicken breasts will be cooked and smoked in a delicate flavor that will enhance the tastes of the grilling marinades and spices you have generously used to coat your main dishes. The end result will have you thinking of which additions you'll place into the grill the next time you're firing up for guests.

Infuse proteins with natural flavor

Consider your charcoal grill just as you would a smoker. When cooking with a smoker, select woods that will complement your proteins, then experiment with matching flavors and textures. Fresh-soaked herbs will add aromatic elements to the fire chamber you're building, and when cooked slowly, your smoked steaks will offer soft, tender cuts for guests to enjoy.

You'll want to make sure whatever you are cooking is elevated above the surface of the grill  to ensure optimum smokey flavor, and you'll need to monitor the temperature of your grill as the meats cook. Using aluminum foil can help keep proteins moist, or use a smoker box to match the wood chips you've selected for cooking. While smoking will still give your cutlets and chops flavors commonly associated with cooking on a grill, the addition of the aromatics like sticks, wood, and herbs will help you serve dishes that will have your friends asking for all of your grilling secrets.