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Wednesday, November 02, 2005 

Smoked meat as a supplement

The previous post got me thinking about the value of using smoked or grilled meat as an ingredient. As a general rule, when I smoke or grill something, that something is the focal point of my meal. A steak, for example is simply what it is when it's done. It's a steak. You're having steak for dinner. It's the same when I pull a pork shoulder or slice up a nice brisket. It's the center of your meal.

But there are many dishes that have meat as an ingredient, which can be greatly improved by smoking or grilling the meat first!

For example, I have long been fond of my beef stew. I've been making it long enough that it's generally consistent and people seem to enjoy it. When I started smoking and grilling seriously, I got the inspiration to grill the stew meat on shish-keh-babs prior to throwing it into my stew. The added flavor of the smoked cherry wood I used added a new level of "WOW" to the stew. Now I’d have to say my stew is positively fantastic!

As I said two posts ago, I used the chicken breast from my smoked chickens in some quesadillas, again taking them to another level. I have also grilled hamburgers and used them in a beef tomato soup or a chili to get some extra depth of flavor.

I highly recommend experimenting with this concept; you never know what you'll discover!