Did you recently purchase your first barbecue smoker? Are you hoping to break it in by barbecuing some pork? If so, you’ll undoubtedly want to select the best smoking woods available for your grand adventure. With that said, here are five options to consider:
Hickory, by far, is one of the best woods to utilize when smoking a pork butt or a slab of ribs. It just has a way of infusing the meat with a drool inspiring, bacon flavor that’s know to cue lovers everywhere. I’d recommend utilizing it when you plain on using heavy seasonings (i.e. pernil). You can usually purchase the wood from barbecue related retailers in a variety of forms. If you do decide to use the wood to make pernil, I’d suggest choosing chunks instead of chips. They tend to smoke longer and provide just the right amount of heat.
Speaking of heavily seasoned pork dishes, you could also opt to choose chunks of oak wood. It produces a rather bold, smoke flavor that can typically stand up to strong seasonings. In addition, I have found that the chunks generally last a while. Thus, you may want to use them when cooking thick cuts of pork. The chips would most likely be suitable for small cuts of meat. If you want a recipe to go with it, visit the Cooking Channel’s website and search for smoked pulled pork.
Prefer to go light? If so, you may want to think about grabbing a few chunks of Mulberry wood instead. It will traditionally impart a light, slightly aromatic, fruit flavor to your dish. Thus, you may want to consider serving the pork with a fruit salsa or glaze. One that tends to pair well with it is blackberry barbecue sauce. You can traditionally find a recipe for it posted on the Smuckers website.
When it comes to adding a light sweetness to pork, pear smoking wood is also worthy of a try too. I would suggest using it with cuts of pork that are not overly seasoned. Otherwise, the seasoning could wipe out the smoke flavor. It would also pair nicely with a side dish of caramelized pears.
Lastly, you may want to grab some apple wood as well. It will also inject a bit of mild fruit flavors into your dish. Given that, you may want to prepare smoked pork tenderloin and serve it with cinnamon baked apples on the side.
Source: Personal Experience
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