One of the most versatile vegetables is now in season and can be used in both hot and cold side dishes and main courses. In this series we will be roasting our peas using a hot smoking method to bring great wood fired flavour.
At least 1 lb of peas, I like sugar snap peas
Sea Salt & Fresh Pepper
A charcoal smoker, any size will do
A disposable foil pan or vegetable pan or basket that is high heat tolerant
I’ll be using my Stok Drum Charcoal Grill for this series. As the Stok has its own charcoal basket, I won’t need to prepare any additional lump hardwood charcoal. I am using a direct method of cooking. I place my charcoal in the unit’s charcoal basket leaving my grate insert off for now. Once the coals turn gray, I will lift the charcoal basket and allow the coals to advance into the cooking drum. I the grate insert off as I will use my vegetable pan to go right over the top of the insert area.
While the coals have been firing, I start preparation on the peas. As I am using sugar snap peas for this recipe there is very little preparation that has to be done. I first will remove all the string membrane that is attached to one side of the snap pea. If any stems are left on, I will remove those as well. I then wash the peas in a colander and then allow them to drip dry, shaking my colander occasionally to rid any excess water. If needed, I will pat dry the peas to ensure they are ready for the fire. Then I sprinkle on some Almond oil, sea salt, and fresh pepper to the peas. Now, we’re ready to wood fire!
PLACING PEAS ON THE GRILL
My coals are hot, the wood chips are smoking, and the peas are ready to be kissed by fire! I place the vegetable pan on the center of the grill and leave my grill cover off. When cooking with wood, know that some temperature fluctuation can occur due to the natural variation in combustion so don’t leave the peas unattended. Once you see the peas start to char, give them a toss with a spoon to ensure an even char cook.
Usually you will see char begin about 4-5 minutes into the cooking cycle. Once that occurs, you will be looking at another couple of minutes before the peas will be ready to come off the grill. Be sure you monitor that you don’t go too far with the smoking process. If the peas begin to shrivel and wrinkle, you went too far. You can remove them and place in an ice bath or run under cold water to stop any additional cooking from taking place.
FIRST TURN ON THE GRILL
It’s so hard to explain the aroma that comes from the grill when you wood fire vegetables. Keep in mind, that even when the vegetables are chilled, they will retain their char flavor. Here are some tips to finishing these beautiful smoked sugar snow peas: add some crumbled feta cheese and serve, or a splash of lemon juice and dill, or even a dollop of ricotta cheese that’s been whipped with a bit of cream. You can also check into our next blog on peas where we feature these scrumptious beauties in a Snap Pea and Cucumber Salad, just perfect on a hot summer’s day!
Take advantage of the short, fresh strawberry season by using your harvest in unique and flavorful recipes. Up first, this take on strawberry shortcake that is in a league of its own!
Here’s what you’ll need:
Packaged Won-Ton wrappers
Frying oil (be sure to use one for high heat)
1 quart of smoked strawberries with about 6 whole strawberries reserved for garnish (see our series on smoking strawberries for directions onour blog or Instagram @smokinlicious #smokinliciousmenu) Minuto® chips
¼ cup of sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/3 cup sliced almonds
¾ cup cold Mascarpone cheese
1/3 cup cold heavy cream
¼ cup cold Prosecco
1/8 teaspoon ground red pepper
PREPARING THE WON-TONS
Frying the Won Tons
In a large skillet, heat 1 cup of high heat oil. When ready, reduce the heat to medium-high and begin adding won-ton wrappers one at a time without crowding the pan. I usually can fit about 4 at a time. This step will take you a bit to do enough wrappers to ensure you have 3 per Napoleon serving. I like to cook the entire package of won-ton wrappers as these make excellent snacks either alone or for dipping salsa, guacamole or your favorite dip. Plus, they make a great sweet snack when sprinkled with cinnamon/sugar or powdered sugar. When cooking the won tons, watch for a tan hue and bubbles to begin on the wrapper. Turn once and remove to a paper towel lined plate about 20 seconds after turning, as the won-ton holds a lot of heat and will continue to cook out of the pan.
PREPARING THE STRAWBERRY FILLING
Placed the quartered smoked strawberries in a large bowl with 2 tablespoons of sugar and the vanilla; toss to coat. Set aside until we are ready to assemble everything.
PREPARING THE PROSECCO CREAM
Preheat the oven to 375° F. Spread the almonds on a baking sheet and bake until golden about 5-7 minutes. Set aside.
Combine the mascarpone, heavy cream, the remaining 2 tablespoons of sugar, ground red pepper, and the prosecco in a medium bowl. Beat with a mixer on medium speed until soft peaks form, about 2 minutes. Be sure not to over beat. Refrigerate briefly to bind everything.
ASSEMBLING THE NAPOLEON
Assembled Smoked Strawberry Napoleon
Place one cooked won-ton on a serving plate. Top with a large dollop of Prosecco cream and then cover with smoked strawberries. Repeat this process 2 more times so you have three won-ton layers per plate. Top with almonds and a whole smoked strawberry on top plus a little extra of your smoked strawberries.
THE ULTIMATE TREAT THAT ISN’T TOO SINFUL!
With the sweetness of the Prosecco cream, the hint of smoke in the strawberries, and that crispy crunch of the won-ton layers, this is a one of kind napoleon that you and your guests won’t soon forget. Feel free to experiment with different cream fillings and fruits. I like cannoli cream as well with a hint of cinnamon. And don’t forget to take picture of your masterpiece and send along to us at SmokinLicious®.
Top with Almond Slivers for an Extra Crunch and Serve!
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