Published: June 23, 2009 | By: Sean | 133 Comments | Permalink
Tillicum Village is a cool little adventure for Seattle visitors and anyone with a love of the rich cultural history of cooking with wood planks and fire. A short boat ride from the mainland takes you to the island where you are greeted with an appetizer of steaming clams in nectar broth. In the longhouse, you watch as whole Chinook salmon are cooked over an alder-wood fire on cedar stakes, then line up to gorge on the delicious smoky fresh fish and warm bread, potatoes and wild rice. It’s really lovely, but a bit out of the way for most of us.
Allrecipes.com has a great overview of how to bring the joy of plank grilling to your very own backyard. Begin by soaking the plank for at least an hour in any number of concoctions accent the wood aroma. White wine, apple juice, citrus and berry juices are recommended. You roast food directly on the plank, and it doesn’t need to be turned over – simply close the lid on your grill, smoke it up and enjoy the results.
Here’s some different types of wood to experiment with:
* Western Red Cedar - sweet, spicy, with a mild smokiness; versatile for fish to veggies.
* Western Alder - robustly smoky with a hint of vanilla; ideal for salmon, plus other fish, vegetables, cheese, and even pizza.
* Western Maple - mildly smoky with buttery accents; suitable for all foods.
* Shagbark Hickory - rich smoke with subtle, bacon-like flavor; excellent with burgers, meats, and poultry. Mmmm bacon.
Great Tip: keep a spray bottle of water by the grill to put out any impromptu sub-fires.
Enjoy and if you give a try, please let us know how it goes in our forums!
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