Our perfect Smoked Peach Relish which is perfectly paired with Shrimp for a tasty dish!

Our perfect Smoked Peach Relish which is perfectly paired with Shrimp for a tasty dish!

Smoke peach Relish is a tasty compliment to seafood! Click To Tweet

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Peach season!  One that lends so many different options to your food experience.  Whether consumed raw or used in entrees or desserts, I aim to bring another flavor level to this much anticipated seasonal fruit by adding wood-fired flavoring.  Then I’ll take these flavorful peach halves and introduce you to a peach relish that is perfect for topping fish and seafood.

Visit your favorite farm stand, fresh market, or your own peach tree and pick three firm, fresh peaches and bring them to the kitchen for preparation before hitting the wood-fired grill.  Oh, and we have plans for additional recipes with smoked peaches so do some extras while you have the grill or smoker going.

Easy Prep for the Grill or Smoker

Skinning our freshly harvested peaches

#peaches

Although yellow is the most common peach available, know that there is a white variety as well.  Both have easy to remove pits that make them easy to prepare for your favorite recipes.

Start by peeling the skin from the peaches, you’ll need 3 for this recipe, though I’m doing a full sheet pan for additional recipes.  Once peeled, using a paring knife, slice thru the center of the peach along the pit.  Gently separate into two halves then remove the pit.  Place the pitted and peeled peach half cut side down on a sheet pan.  Continue with the remaining peaches.  I’ll be using my gas grill set up with a smoker box of wood chunks to bring a smoky flavor to the fruit.  I’ve placed my smoker box directly on my heat diffuser to get the wood hot and smoldering quickly.  My pan of peach halves is placed on the unlit side of the grill.  Lid down on the grill and allow these peaches to tenderize slightly and infuse the smoke flavor.  I’ll check on them in about 15 minutes.

our tray of smoked peaches on the gas grill using a two zone cooking method to add wood smoke flavor.

#twozonecooking

 

 Tasting Notes: Keep in mind, flavors from wood on a gas grill will not be as intense as those on a charcoal unit.  Keep this in mind when you select the equipment to infuse the smoke flavor into the peaches.

Relish Ingredients for Smoked Peach Relish

Adding our wet ingredients to the pepper mix

#peppers

While the peaches are absorbing all that great hardwood flavor on the grill, let’s get started on the base for our peach relish.  To begin, I’ll get my mortar although you can also use a mini food processor.  Place one minced garlic clove into the mortar.  Add one chili pepper (serrano, jalapeno, & Hungarian make good choices) that has been seeded and minced.  To that, add 2 tablespoons of light brown sugar.  Using your pestle or the processor, pound or pulse until a paste is formed.  Remember, fresh ingredients will make for the best relish flavors.

With the base paste made to our peach relish, it’s time to add the liquids to balance the spicy and sweet flavors.  Start by adding 2 tablespoons of water, 2 tablespoons of lime juice and 3 tablespoons of oyster sauce.  Transfer the relish base to a large bowl.  Now return to the grill and remove the peach halves.  These should be browned from the smoke infusion.  Remove 6 halves and dice each.  Add them to the bowl with the base.  Let’s get ready for the final flavors.

The Ultimate Relish Flavors

Adding fresh herbs added to our rice

#freshherb

The final flavors are the fresh herbs that need to be added right before serving.  This includes ¼ cup of fresh, chopped cilantro and 2 tablespoons of fresh mint.  As peaches tends to be a delicate fruit meat, it’s important to gently mix everything together; don’t over combine.  Serve immediately with your favorite fish or seafood.   In fact, this is even great with just some toasted bread.  I’ve served mine today with brown rice and simple seasoned shrimp with a side of yellow waxed beans. Delicate yet full of balanced flavors that will surprise you coming from a smoked fruit.

 

What’s your favorite recipe using smoked or grill peaches?  Leave us a comment to opine and subscribe to get all our postings on tips, techniques and recipes.  Bringing innovation to wood fired cooking with recipes, techniques and the science behind the fire, smoke, and flavor. That’s SmokinLicious®.

SmokinLicious Products used in this Smoked Peach Relish recipe:

Our special split double filet wood chunk use to smoke the peaches for our smoked peach relish

#woodchunks

Wood Chunks- Double & Single Filet

For more reading related to Smoked Peach Relish try other recipes

For more reading related to Smoked Peach Relish try other recipes

More recipes you might enjoy:

-GRILLED PEACHES FOR THE PERFECT SALAD ADDITION

-MUSHROOM TAPENADE ON THE WOOD GRILL

-COAL-FIRED LEEKS TERRINE

Dr. Smoke-This Smoked Peach Relish recipe is perfect accompaniment to any dish when we want a subtle fruity taste!

Dr. Smoke-This Smoked Peach Relish recipe is perfect accompaniment to any dish when we want a subtle fruity taste!

Ember Fired Eggplant on the rack cooking above a bed of hot coals. This technique provides the heat for cooking and the aroma of the wood smoke

Ember Fired Eggplant on the rack cooking above a bed of hot coals. This technique provides the heat for cooking and the aroma of the wood smoke

EMBER FIRED EGGPLANT WITH FETA TARTS Click To Tweet

You’ve heard me mention before how great it is to ember or coal fire certain foods, with a good majority of those items falling in the fruit category.  One of the best fruits to use this technique with is eggplant.

Not of Nutritional Value

we selected two nice and plump eggplants for our ember cooking Eggplant, also called aubergine, is part of a flowering plant grown for its edible fruit.  This is a thick-skinned fruit that has a meaty quality to its flesh.  In fact, it can make for a filling meal.  Eggplant contains a lot of water – 92% to be specific!  It is not known to be a contributor for daily nutritional intake.  Despite all that, Eggplant remains a favorite ingredient to cook with.

Nestling is Key

When cooking in the coals, it is best to use medium sized eggplant.  It doesn’t matter what variety you select, the technique for cooking in the coals will remain the same.

Starting the fire

First, you need to start with a good wood fire, using clean hardwood.  In order to do this technique successfully, you need to ensure that there are no flames left in the fire, just hot coals.  You’ll know the coals are ready for the cooking when they are completely grayed over.  If your grilling area is large enough, you can stage a couple of burning wood pieces to provide additional heat to the area.  Just don’t cook directly in those flames.

preparing the hot coals for the eggplant. you want these to burn down leaving only the heat and no flame to burn the eggplant. Ember cooking is only over hot coals.When the coals are ready, make sure the embers are in an even layer and then place the eggplants side by side in the embers.  I like to use a fine screen in the bottom of my charcoal area to aide in heat retention.  Now, leave these untouched for about 10 minutes.  After that time, you can turn the eggplant to ensure all sides get evenly charred.  If you make a large enough fire, you can bury the eggplant completely in the hot coals and not have to do any turning.  That technique will require about 30 minutes of cooking time.

Chef Bert teaches Neighbor Tom about ember cooking

#chefbertandtom

Blackened, Charred Skin Makes It Ready

Once the Ember Fired Eggplant has tenderized in the coals, it’s time to carefully remove it. Cool the eggplant, so it won’t burn and can be handled.  Then, slice each eggplant open from end to end, and gently scoop out the flesh.  Be sure to leave all the charred skin behind.  If you’re ready to use this in a recipe, then no need to do anything more to the eggplant.  If you plan on using it later, you must prevent the eggplant flesh from turning dark by incorporating 1 tablespoon of lemon juice and enough water to cover the flesh.  When finished, it’s best to store the Ember Fired Eggplant in a glass jar, bowl, or other container.

6 Needed Ingredients

To make the Ember Fired Eggplant with Feta Tarts, you’ll need a muffin pan and the following food ingredients:

  • Flesh from 1 medium size coal-fired eggplant
  • ¾ cup crumbled feta cheese (about 3 ounces)
  • ¼ cup roughly chopped pistachios, plus 2 tablespoons for topping the tarts
  • ground coriander about ¼ teaspoon
  • ¼ teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 1 tablespoon fresh mint leaves, finely chopped
  • 5 sheets frozen phyllo dough, thawed
  • Extra virgin olive oil for brushing dough and preparing muffin pan

Wood Flavored Eggplant Mixture

removing any char from the fire and then chopping up the eggplant to be added as the tart fillingRoughly chop the wood fired eggplant.  Then transfer to a medium bowl and add feta, 3 tablespoons chopped pistachios, coriander, red-pepper flakes, and mint.  Season with salt and fresh ground pepper and stir gently to combine.

Making the Tarts

Lightly oil the muffin pan cups.  Lay 1 sheet of phyllo dough on a board and lightly brush with oil.  Stack 4 more phyllo sheets on top, brushing each with oil.  Cut the stacked sheets into 6 equal squares.  Carefully, pick up each square and place in a muffin cup, gently pressing in place.  Fill each dough cup with about ¼ cup of eggplant mixture.  Gently fold over the corners of the dough to enclose the filling as a tart.  Brush tops with oil and sprinkle with crushed pistachios.  Then Bake until golden brown, about 30 minutes.  Let cool for 5 minutes, then serve.

showcasing the finished product! Our ember roasted eggplant within the feta tart- yummy

 

 

 

 

 How did we do?  Leave a comment, love us, and subscribe.  We’re all about wood fired cooking techniques, idea, recipes, and the science behind the smoke and fire.

What can I roast over a fire?

Just about any fruit or vegetable can be roasted over a fire.  Vegetables and fruits with a dense, husky outer skin do very well when grilled with gas, charcoal and wood fuels.  Eggplant is ideal for roasting over an open fire or directly on hot embers (ember cooking).

Additional reading:

-EMBER FIRED ZUCCHINI & RICOTTA GALETTE

-SUCCULANT WOOD FIRED STUFFED TOMATO WITH HERB RICE

TOP 10 VEGETABLES TO COOK IN HOT EMBERS

SmokinLicious® products used in this recipe:

Our wonderful Single Filet wood chunks are featured in this ember fired eggplant recipe

#woodchunks

Wood Chunks- Single Filet

Dr Smoke- "Try this because it's a really tasty appetizer and easy to make."

Dr Smoke- “Try this because it’s a really tasty appetizer and easy to make.”

Our Cast Iron pan on the gas grill with double filet wood chunks flavoring our smoked peaches into the upside down cake!

Our Cast Iron pan on the gas grill with double filet wood chunks flavoring our smoked peaches into the upside down cake!

Smoked peach upside down cake! Click To Tweet

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Hopefully, you enjoyed our previous segment on adding smoke flavor to seasonal peaches.  We sure have had fun providing you with different techniques to add the natural flavor of wood. Now is the fun part where you take those smoked fruit pieces and turn them into something great.

I’m going to introduce you to a super flavorful and balanced peach cake done in the style of the traditional pineapple upside down cake – only with peaches!  For this recipe you’ll need three peaches but don’t waste the perfect time to do some extras so you can make all our great smoked peach recipes.

 Skillet Cooking

Our cast Iron pan on the grill

#castiron

Be sure you follow our posting on how to smoke peaches on a grill with wood or on a traditional smoker.  Our cake recipe starts with 3 tablespoons of butter.  Melt the butter and coat a cast iron skillet with it.  Be sure to get the butter up the sides of the pan as this will be the non-stick guarantee for removing the cake.  Place a ¼ cup of sugar evenly on the bottom of the pan and allow to brown for about 3 minutes.  While the sugar is browning, slice the peach halves into ¾-inch thick slices.  Once the butter/sugar mixture is ready, arrange the peaches around the edge of the pan on top of the sugar.  Then fill the center of the pan with the remaining peach slices.  Cook just for a few minutes until the peaches are sweetened by the butter and sugar mixture.  Remove the skillet from the heat.  Now, time to prepare the cake batter.

 Tasting Notes: Keep in mind, we will be cooking the cake on the grill which means you must use a high heat tolerant cookware.  Cast iron is ideal for this purpose but feel free to use another piece of cookware that will tolerate a grill or smokers heat.

Our upside down cake on the wood fired grill set up for a two zone cooking method.

#twozonecooking #cheftbertandtom

 Upside Down Cake Batter

Our dry ingredients ready to become the dough

#ingredients

The cake batter starts with the dry ingredients.  You’ll need a medium bowl for these ingredients.  Start by whisking 1 cup of coarse yellow cornmeal with ¾ cup all-purpose flour.  Keep in mind, you can use polenta if you prefer.  Add 1 teaspoon baking powder, 2 teaspoons chopped fresh lavender or 1-1/2 teaspoons of dried lavender, and 1 teaspoon salt in a medium bowl.  Mix well and set aside.  Next, we’ll work on the wet ingredients for our batter.

It’s important to mix the wet ingredients separate from the dry to ensure each ingredient is mixed well.  Start by getting a large bowl.  Add 6 tablespoons of softened butter and ¾ cup sugar to the bowl.  With a hand mixer, beat the sugar and butter until pale and fluffy.  Get 3 large eggs and add one egg to the batter at a time, beating well after each addition.  The batter will slowly become thinner.  Mix in ½ teaspoon vanilla extract and ½ cup heavy cream.  Now, taking the medium bowl of cornmeal mixture, add ½ the dry cornmeal mixture to the large bowl of wet ingredients.  Be sure to use a low setting on the mixer and scrap down the sides of the bowl to get a complete mix.  With the batter ready, we’ll be adding batter to our cast iron pan loaded with peaches.

A Beautiful Finish

Our upside down cake baking in the cast iron pan on the gas grill

#castironcooking

What’s great about making cakes in a cast iron pan is generally, the batter is dropped into the pan rather than poured.  Using a large spoon, drop the prepared batter over the peaches and spread with a spatula.  Time to add flavor to the entire cake by cooking it on the grill with wood chunks in a smoker box.

Cook until a tester inserted in the center comes out clean; this should be 20-25 minutes with a steady grill temperature of 350°F.  Transfer the skillet to a wire rack and let stand for 10 minutes.  Run a knife or spatula around the edge of the cake and invert onto a serving platter.  Tap the bottom of the skillet to release the cake and remove the skillet slowly.  Let cool slightly, then serve.

Although this is a sweet cake, I like to add a bit of unsweetened freshly whipped heavy cream.  Feel free to change the fruit in the cake to something else that is in season like plums, strawberries, blueberries – you get the picture.  For all you camp cooking lovers, this is one to try at the camp as well.  Just gather some hot coals and place your cast iron near those coals and you’re on your way!

What’s your favorite iron skillet dessert?  Leave us a comment to opine and subscribe to get all our postings on tips, techniques and recipes.  Bringing innovation to wood fired cooking with recipes, techniques and the science behind the fire, smoke, and flavor. That’s SmokinLicious®.

SmokinLicious® products used in this recipe:

Wood Chunks- Double & Single Filet

For more reading related to

For more reading related to Smoked peaches using our cast iron pan on a gas grill- try these recipes

 

More yummy recipes to try:

-GRILLED PEACHES FOR THE PERFECT SALAD ADDITION

-WOOD-FIRED APPLES MAKE THE BEST CAKE

-ZUCCHINI BREAD & CAKE ON THE GRILL

Dr. Smoke- using our cast iron pan for our smoked peaches!

Dr. Smoke- using our cast iron pan for our smoked peaches!

Did you love this blog?  Then please share!

This simple but delicious recipe combines smoked bananas double bits with chocolate and crushed nuts

Finished smoked banana double bites (combining smoked bananas with chocolate and crushed nuts)

listen to the audio of this blog posting

SMOKED BANANA DOUBLE BITES

If you joined us for our series on  a smoking banana , now it’s time to learn just what you can do with this flavorful fruit.  This recipe for Smoked Banana Double Bites makes for a perfect snack, kid loving dessert, or even a sweet party item.  Gather together the following:

Ingredients:

You’ll also need a saucepan for melting the chocolate or a microwave safe bowl, Popsicle sticks or similar disposable handle for inserting in the banana segments, and a small cake spatula for spreading the chocolate.  I would also keep on hand some hot water in case the chocolate should seize or harden on you.  If that occurs, simply add 1 teaspoon of hot water at a time, mixing well, until you restore the smooth consistency.

Preparing:

It’s important that you get the other ingredients ready prior to melting the chocolate as you want to prevent the chocolate from hardening.  Take your 4 ounces of slivered almonds and add to a storage bag.  I am the old school so I will crush my almonds using a canned good.  You can use a kitchen mallet or rolling pin, whatever is the easiest for you.  Be sure you just crush the almonds – don’t make almond dust or flour!  Then prepare a sheet pan with wax paper and get your popsicle or other wood stick ready for putting the Smoked Banana Double Bites together.  I named this recipe after the average bites it takes to get one of these little flavor explosions into your tummy.

Melt the Chocolate:

Once the other ingredients are at the ready and your sheet pan with wax paper is set, it’s time to melt the semi-sweet chocolate.  You can do this a couple of ways.  In a double boiler which is the preferred method, in a saucepan set to a low temperature, or in a microwave.  Your choice- just be sure you get a consistency that is not too thin or thick so the banana will coat easily.  I add 2 tablespoons of butter to the chocolate to produce a shiny result.  Melt until just smooth being careful not to go beyond that stage or the chocolate will harden.  If you do go too far, simply add 1 teaspoon of hot water to the mix to thin and recover it.

Assembling the Bites:

With the chocolate melted we are now ready for assembly of our Smoked Banana Double Bites!  Taking your Popsicle stick or similar wooden item, insert into the center of a banana segment.  Remember, I had cut my bananas into 2-inch segments when I did the smoking process.  Now dip into the melted chocolate and begin to spread into an even layer using a small cake spatula.  Just get the top and sides coated so they can roll in the next two ingredients.  Again, if your chocolate should seize or harden on you, simply add 1 teaspoon of hot water to bring it back.

With our banana segment covered in chocolate, we are now ready for “the roll”.  First, place some crushed slivered almond on a piece of wax paper.  Then roll the chocolate covered banana into the almonds being careful not to press down.  Just allow the almonds to stick on their own.  Next, a trip to the shredded coconut.  You can put the coconut on a wax sheet as well or leave in a small container that can accommodate the size of your banana.  Let the coconut fill in all the spaces between the almonds then lay on a sheet pan covered with wax paper.  These will need to harden a bit in the refrigerator.

This simple but delicious recipe combines smoked bananas double bits with chocolate and crushed nuts

The Yummy, Creamy, Chocolate Finish:

So here we are.  The finale!  After taking our bananas to a smoky place using SmokinLicious® Minuto® Wood Chips for smoking, we gave them a bath in luscious dark chocolate.  Then the roll – into the crushed almond and shredded coconut – 2 fantastic flavor pairings for the banana.  Then off to the sheet pan covered with wax paper to set everything up in the refrigerator.  You just need about 45 minutes of setting time then it’s off to the party, or for a snack or that great dessert.

Don’t forget to put your own spin on this recipe by swapping the dark chocolate for white, the almonds for pistachio or pine nuts.  Always keep the holidays in mind too.  Use pastel dyes for the coconut or white chocolate for a great Easter dessert, green and red dyes for Christmas, and blue for Hanukah.   Make this great, simple recipe your own.  You can even do whole bananas, set them up, and then slice them over ice cream or pound cake with a hint of fresh cream.  Get your imagination going and expand on the great use of the smoked banana.

The Culinary Crew wants you to know …

… that you can add a nice smoky twist to just about any fruit easily by using any hand-held food smoking device.  We’ve found that fruits with more of a dense, semi-porous consistency like bananas, peaches or strawberries do very well in accepting wood smoke vapor and retaining superb smoky flavoring.  Go ahead and give your favorite fruit-based holiday desserts a hint of smoky richness!  You won’t be disappointed!

SmokinLicious® products used:

Wood Chips- Minuto®

For more reading related to

For more reading related to

Additional reading:

-BEST GINGERBREAD MEETS THE GRILL

-BANANA’S ULTIMATE SMOKY CREAMY GOODNESS!

Dr Smoke

Dr. Smoke “you will love this take on bananas”

*Please leave us a comment*

WOOD-FIRED APPLES MAKE THE BEST CAKE BECAUSE OF THE UNIQUE FLAVOR BROUGHT OUT BY THE SMOKING PROCESS!

Wood Fired Apple WOOD-FIRED APPLES MAKE THE BEST CAKE

WOOD-FIRED APPLES MAKE THE BEST CAKE

As the second most consumed fruit in the USA, apples are loaded with antioxidant benefits and have been found to have extensive benefit to the colon due to the high level of gut bacteria present in its polyphenols.  Plus, this is a fruit that is readily available all year long making it an ideal choice for cooking.

We are taking the Gala variety and putting them over a coal fire for wood-fired flavor in our apple pie cake.  Pick your favorite variety of apple and get out the charcoal grill for this fun and simple technique and recipe.

Fire Up the Grill

Fire up the Stok grill

After purchasing 12 apples of your choice, get the charcoal grill going, so the flames can reduce to hot coals.  That’s all needed for our apple cooking!  Any size charcoal grill will do, including the small portable grill.  I use a chimney started to lite charwood from SmokinLicious® as this is my preferred product when I do a short cook fruit or vegetable item.  The reason?  It is not fully carbonized, so it still releases plenty of flavonoids from the hardwood.  You certainly can use a standard hardwood charcoal but add a chunk or two of SmokinLicious® double filet wood chunks to be sure you get a wood flavor.

While the chimney starter is burning down to hot coals, I peel and thinly slice 12 apples.  I use a Gala variety for my recipe and a Stôk charcoal grill, equipped with an insert system.  I place my sliced apples in the insert vegetable basket for this simple method of wood firing the apples.  Just be sure to spray the basket with non-stick cooking spray to ensure the apples don’t stick.

A Cake by Name

With my hot SmokinLicious® charwood producing steady heat, my 12 Gala apples peeled and sliced thin, I’m ready to place the vegetable basket over the hot coals.  Remember, apples have a lot of water content, so they will steam initially.  The water will attract the smoke vapor and bring great color and flavor.  After approximately 10 minutes, I shake the apple slices in the basket to allow them to rotate for even cooking and color.  You’ll see the edges become bronzed as they cook.   In 20 minutes, these will be ready to go.

wood-fired apples make the best cake

Adding the Ingredients & Cook Time

Our wood fired apples and dry ingredients mixed in the pan ready for baking

After the apples are removed from the grill and cooled slightly, add a teaspoon of cinnamon and 2 teaspoons of fresh lemon juice to maintain color until baked in the oven.  Set those aside and gather together 2 cups flour, 1 cup packed light brown sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 2 sticks of cold butter cut into 8 cubes.

Start by combining 2 cups of flour, 1 cup of packed light brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon.  Taking one piece of cold butter at a time, add to the flour mixture, cutting each piece using either an electric hand mixer, 2 knives or a pastry cutter.  You want to have pea-size pieces of butter mixed into the flour mixture.  Press 2/3 of this mixture into a 9-inch springform pan then add the wood-fired apple slices, spreading evenly in pan.

With the wood fired apple slices nestled in the simple cake batter of flour, brown sugar, and cinnamon, it’s time to top the apples with the remaining 1/3 flour mixture.  Be sure all areas are covered.  Set the springform pan on the foil lined sheet pan and place in a 350°F oven for 75 minutes.  Once cooked, remove from the oven and allow to sit in the springform pan until cool.  Just run a knife along the edge of the cake to ensure it will separate from the pan’s ring once removed.  Remove the ring when the cake has cooled then sift a ¼ cup powdered sugar on the surface of the cake.

Cake Perfection

Our finished wood fired apple pie cake nicely golden brown

 

After giving Gala apple slices the lick of smoke from our charwood grill, mix together flour, brown sugar and cinnamon with butter for a great cake batter, and baking everything together, the ultimate in apple pie cake is born.  With a light coating of powder sugar, the wood-fired apple slices pile high for perfection in the single bite.  More like a cobbler batter than cake, you’ll love the simplicity of the construction and the unique flavor a wood fire gives to apples.  Perfect anytime of the year, just like apples are, you’ll be the envy of your neighborhood when you fire up the grill for wood infusion to apples.  Now you must also prove that Wood-Fired Apples make the best Cake – Enjoy!

The Culinary Crew wants you to know …

… that this recipe can easily be adapted with the substitution of apples with fruits like peaches, pears or even strawberries.  This switch will offer more of a traditional cobbler type baking with these moisture rich fruits taking on incredible but delicate smoky flavor.

Visit our narrated video with more pictures and step-by-step instructions.

Press above to visit our narrated video with more pictures and step-by-step instructions.

SmokinLicious® products:

Charwood

Wood Chunks- Double Filet

More recipes to try:

-Our Smoked Carrot Cake

-Smoked Strawberry Napoleon

-A SAVORY TAKE ON THE PANCAKE FROM SMOKINLICIOUS®

 

Dr Smoke- "

Dr. Smoke- “This is a MUST try recipe”!

Our table of the six ingredients necessary to prepare the smoked pear salad with gorgonzola for a tasty twist.

Refreshing smoked pear salad with gorgonzola and our easy to follow recipe only requires six ingredients.

SMOKED PEAR SALAD WITH GORGONZOLA

When your craving salad but our tired of the same boring options, take it a step further and feed all your senses with the Smoke Pear Salad with Gorgonzola from SmokinLicious®!

This is a very simple salad once you’ve followed our segment on smoking fresh pears.  With pears in season during the colder months, it’s a great time to get your serving of greens.  So, let’s get started with what you will need for Smoked Pear Salad with Gorgonzola:

Ingredients:

  • 2-3 smoked pears (see our previous series on smoking pears)
  • 1/2 cup of Gorgonzola cheese
  • 1/3 cup of extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar – I prefer a flavor infused one – I am using tangerine balsamic vinegar but anything in the citrus line would work well
  • 1 head of lettuce in my case, I am using Boston lettuce
  • fresh pepper

Preparing the Smoked Pear Salad with Gorgonzola:

Taking your previously smoked pear halves, time to remove the skin and prepare to cut these for the salad.  Now, this is where you need to make some decisions on how you want your salad to look.  You can either slice the pears to add to whole Boston or Romaine lettuce leaves or you can cube them to add to chopped lettuce.  I will be chopping my lettuce and cubing my smoked pears.  Ideal sizing is ½ inch thickness for your pears to provide the right balance between the boldness of the smoked pear and the savory bite of the Gorgonzola.  I’ll be balancing the two out with my vinaigrette.

Specially Diced Lettuce Arranged in a Bowl

Chopped Boston Lettuce

Boston lettuce is ideal for forming its own bowl and is an ideal choice for this pear salad.  If you want to use the leaves whole, lay 1-2 for a good personal size salad.  I am chopping my lettuce for a full side dish platter.  Be sure to clean the lettuce and pat dry prior to using.  The lettuce, if cut, should be rough cut in order to hold the pears and hold the vinaigrette.

Assembling the Salad:

Once the lettuce is cut or laid in whole leaf form to the plate, it’s time to add the cubed or sliced pear.  Be sure you try to keep the pears in a single layer.  Now it’s time to add the Gorgonzola cheese.  Depending on your preference for this very strong cheese, begin sprinkling it all around the salad or if using the lettuce as a bowl, providing an even layer of cheese.  It’s that simple!  Now you’ll see just how well these colors all work together.  Pleasing to the eyes and mouth!

Specially Diced Smoked Pears Placed on Lettuce Awaiting the Zesty Gorgonzola

Adding Gorgonzola

Making the Vinaigrette:

Now that the salad components are plated it’s time to prepare the vinaigrette.  I like to mix my dressings in a 2-cup measuring cup in order to make it easy to add to the salad.  You will need a small whisk as well.  First, add 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil to the measuring cup.  Then add 1/3 cup balsamic vinegar – I am using a tangerine infused balsamic vinegar for a citrus flavor to this salad.  To the liquids, grind some fresh ground pepper and then whisk until combined and thickened.  Do not mix the vinaigrette unless you’re ready to serve the salad otherwise you’ll get a breakdown and thinning.

 

The Finish of the Smoked Pear Salad with Gorgonzola:

Vinaigrette Spritzed Over Smoked Pears and Gorgonzola- Adding the Finishing Touch to a Savory Salad

Finished Salad

Here is the final component to this great salad – drizzling a tangerine vinaigrette over the smoked pears, Boston lettuce and Gorgonzola.  It’s your choice how much to add but just be sure you get most of the components coated with a bit or you’ll be missing out on the fantastic balance of all the flavors.  Smoky depth of the pears, bite of the Gorgonzola, crisp freshness of the lettuce and the tang of the oil and vinegar.  A perfect way to get heartiness in a salad while enjoying the benefits of healthiness.  Bon appetito!

The Culinary Crew wants you to know …

… that although grilled or smoked pears are the featured “star” ingredient to this salad, just about any type of seasonal fruit can add a nice taste zip to salads when grilled or smoked.  Grilling and smoking fruit brings out a caramelized flavor dimension that is rich, a touch earthy and very pleasant to your taste buds.  Try apples, peaches or even grapes with this recipe!

SmokinLicious® Products used in this recipe:

Wood Chips- Minuto®

For more reading related to

For more reading related to Smoked Pear Salad with Gorgonzola

More recipes to try:

-GRILLED PEACHES FOR THE PERFECT SALAD ADDITION

-STEPPING UP RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE

-WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

-THE SMOKED PEAR BELLINI COCKTAIL

Dr Smoke

Dr Smoke

 

 

 

 

 

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pinterest widget for the pear salad

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you tube link to our pear salad instructional videos

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Our Finished Strawberry Rhubarb Fool with a Smokey Twist!

Our Finished Strawberry Rhubarb Fool with a Smokey Twist!

Strawberry Rhubarb Fool with a Smokey Twist! Click To Tweet

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Strawberry Rhubarb Fool–Fresh rhubarb means great recipes most of which consist of dessert!  This one is no exception.  Not only am I going to use smoked rhubarb but I’m including smoked strawberry as well.

This is the SmokinLicious® version of the Strawberry-Rhubarb Fool a popular dessert in late Spring and Early Summer.  Our creamy version is taking on a new flavor as we add another element: smoked components.  That means you need to smoke the rhubarb and strawberries first, before you make our recipe.  You can find our tips on smoking the strawberries and the rhubarb on our Tips and Techniques Blog.  Don’t be scared!  These are simple techniques you can do on any type of equipment including with a hand held food smoker.

Get smoking your fresh strawberries and rhubarb and then, let’s make the sweetest, creamiest strawberry-rhubarb fool smoker’s style!

 Tame Those Flavors

Our Finished Smoked Strawberry on a try

#smokedstrawberry

 I find it easiest to work with rhubarb and strawberries when they are cut down in size after the smoking.  For me, rhubarb cut into 3-inch lengths and strawberries sliced thin work best for this recipe.  Don’t forget to keep any of the juice that comes off the smoked strawberries both during the smoking process and as you prepare the strawberries.

The combination of the tart rhubarb and the sweetness of the strawberry plus the smoky quality from both will produce a perfect balance.  Let’s get these two flavors combined to make the perfect fool.

Since rhubarb borders on the bitter, it needs to have some additional sweet added to it.  Place your smoked rhubarb cuts which equal about one pound, into a saucepan and add a ½ cup of sugar.  Heat on medium high.  While that is sweetening and tenderizing, place the smoked strawberries (about 8-10 ounces depending on the size) into a bowl and add ¼ cup sugar, allowing this to dissolve completely.    This process will take about 30 minutes.  Feel free to adjust the level of sugar in the strawberries based on the sweetness you feel the raw strawberry already presents with as well as your own personal preference.

Our Rhubarb in the pot with sugar added

#Rhubarb

Once the sugar has dissolved in the smoked strawberries and the rhubarb has begun to shred apart, it’s time to remove the rhubarb from the heat.  Stir in the sweetened smoked strawberries and transfer to a bowl.  Refrigerate this compote uncovered until cold.  This will take about 1-1/2 hours though I prefer to leave this overnight.  Once the compote is in the refrigerator, place a metal bowl in the refrigerator as well.  You will need this to produce the trademark cream-base for our fool dessert.

Tasting Notes: Some find the texture of tenderized rhubarb to be too stringy.  If that’s the case, feel free to process the rhubarb in a food processor or blender before combining with the macerated strawberries.  Also, depending on the size of the strawberries, you may prefer to leave larger chunks, by halving the berries rather than slicing.

 Making a Fool for Me!

Folding the ingredients into a fool

#fool

Time to remove the chilled metal bowl from the refrigerator and add ¾ cup heavy cream and 1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar.  Whisk this together until soft peaks form.  Be sure you don’t over beat the mixture or you will lose all the air that makes this whipped cream.  Set aside 1/3 cup of the cold smoked compote which will be used for topping the finished dessert servings.  Take the rest of the compote and fold into the whipped cream just until the mixture looks streaky.  Spoon into serving glasses or bowls and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight.

Whenever I need a simple and quick dessert that looks elegant, I love to make a fool.  If I’m serving a more formal event, I prefer to serve these in stemmed glasses like a martini glass.  For a family barbeque or daily dessert, small bowls work well or even clear throw away cups or bowls.  Once the cream and compote mixture are spooned into the serving vessel, top with about a tablespoon of reserved compote.  I prefer to add mint leaves to finish this off.  Strawberry-Rhubarb Smoked Fool – a simple yet elegant looking treat that everyone is going to love!

Tasting Notes: Here’s a tip: this can be served cold or you can freeze it for a super cold treat on a really hot day.  The frozen rendition will remind you of a semifreddo or frozen yogurt treat.

What’s your favorite fool recipe?  Leave us a comment to opine and subscribe to get all our postings on tips, techniques and recipes.  Bringing innovation to wood fired cooking with recipes, techniques and the science behind the fire, smoke, and flavor. That’s SmokinLicious®.

SmokinLicious® Products:

Wood Chunks- Double Filet

Wood Chips- Minuto® and Piccolo®

For more reading related to Strawberry Rhubarb Fool and try other recipes! Don't forget to share your experience

For more reading related to Strawberry Rhubarb Fool and try other recipes! Don’t forget to share your experience

 

Other smoky desserts you might enjoy:

-STRAWBERRY SEMIFREDDO GETS SMOKY

-SMOKED STRAWBERRY HAND PIE

-Smoked Strawberry Napoleon

Dr. Smoke you must try this Strawberry Rhubarb Fool with a Smokey Twist!

Dr. Smoke you must try this Strawberry Rhubarb Fool with a Smokey Twist!

SMOKED STRAWBERRY NAPOLEON WITH PROSECCO CREAM

Smoked Strawberry Napoleon

Smoked Strawberry Napoleon

SUMMARY:

Enjoy fresh Strawberries on strawberry shortcake or strawberry napoleon and then increase the flavor with Smoked Strawberries!  The smoking intensifies the Strawberries for this smoked strawberry napoleon!  This will be a must addition to your strawberry napoleon recipes! Also try as a smoked strawberry shortcake!

listen to the audio of this blog posting

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!

INGREDIENT LIST

 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 smoked with Minuto® chips (reserve about 6 whole strawberries for garnish)
  • 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

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

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!

Top with Almond Slivers for an Extra Crunch and Serve!

For audio instructions visit our Instagram account @smokinlicious #smokinliciousmenu

Bon Bar B Que

 

SmokinLicious® Products for this recipe:

Wood Chips- Minuto®

For more reading related to

For more reading related to Smoked Strawberry Napoleon, try these recipes

More recipes you may enjoy:

-SMOKED STRAWBERRY HAND PIE

-STRAWBERRY SEMIFREDDO GETS SMOKY

-STRAWBERRY BELLINI BOTH SWEET & SMOKY

Dr Smoke

 

All the supplies you need to add a smokey flavor to this wonderful fruit strawberries for Smoked Strawberries

All the supplies you need to add a smokey flavor to this wonderful fruit- strawberries for Smoked Strawberries

listen to the audio of this blog posting

 HAND HELD SMOKING OF FRESH STRAWBERRY FOR SMOKED STRAWBERRIES

Harvesting fresh strawberries is now in season so why not do something different with this fruit favorite and try your hand at smoking them!  One of the easiest methods for controlling the smoke level to a fruit is to use a hand held food smoker.

It's the time of year that you see the road side stands offering locally grown fresh strawberries.

It’s the time of year that you see the roadside stands offering locally grown fresh strawberries.

Ingredients

HANDHELD FOOD SMOKER PREPARATIONS:

Assemble the handheld food smoker according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Add the SmokinLicious® Wood Products Piccolo® Wood Chips in Size #6, #8 or #10 to the chip bowl of the unit. You will only need a Tablespoon or two on hand.  Be sure to select a wood flavor that will not overpower the strawberry.  My choice is Alder.

PREPARING THE STRAWBERRIES

Gently wash the strawberries and trim the stem head. You may smoke the strawberries whole or in cut pieces, your choice.  Pat dry and lay them out on the sheet pan.

SETTING UP FOR SMOKING

Once the strawberries are on the sheet pan, take a food storage bag or plastic wrap and secure around the sheet pan holding the strawberries.  Leave the end of the bag open or one corner of the plastic wrap open on the pan.  Position the smoking tube of the handheld food smoker under the plastic wrap or in the bag and then seal around the tube.

SETTING UP THE SMOKER IN THE BAG

SMOKING PROCESS

Turn on the handheld food smoker and light the chips.  Immediately, you will see smoke being produced inside the plastic wrap or bag.  Decide how much smoke vapor you want in the bag – though I prefer to fill it right up.  Turn off the handheld food smoker and remove the tube. Then seal the bag with a cable tie or twist tie or secure the plastic wrap to the sheet pan.

I like to wait until I see most of the smoke vapor dissipate from the bag before opening.  Once the smoke infusion is finished, you can begin to use the smoked strawberries in any recipe that calls for this fabulous fruit.  Be sure to check out our recipe postings to give you inspiration including the Smoked Strawberry Napoleon with Prosecco Cream.

Bon-Bar-B-Q!

The finished product after a brief smoking! Add sugar maple smoking wood to provide the sweetness inside of sugar.

The finished product after a brief smoking! Add sugar maple smoking wood to provide the sweetness inside of sugar.

SmokinLicious® Products:

Wood Chips- Piccolo®

For more reading related to

For more reading related to

More strawberry recipes:

-STRAWBERRY SEMIFREDDO GETS SMOKY

-SMOKED STRAWBERRY HAND PIE

-STRAWBERRY BELLINI BOTH SWEET & SMOKY

 

 

Dr. Smoke- “It’s strawberry time, add a new twist to your favorite fruit using sugar maple smoking wood chips for smoked strawberries.”

 

These finished apples get smoky are a wonderful fall treat!

These finished smokey baked apples are a wonderful fall treat! Easy to do on the gas grill with a two-zone cooking method with wood chunks.

SEASONAL SMOKEY BAKED APPLES WITH SWEET STUFFING

listen to the audio of this blog posting

Listen to the smokey baked apples blog!

The apples we bought at the Farmers Market

Apple season is here and I’ve found some beauties to make a simple but super sweet and flavorful recipe.    And of course, I’m taking it to the grill to let the apple get a kiss of smoke while tenderizing.  With so many varieties of apples available, you can pick your favorite and use this filling for the perfect stuffed apple.

In my home state of New York, there are over 25 varieties of apples.  Since these can be cold stored, they are available year-round but there is nothing like the fresh harvest.  In fact, controlled atmosphere storage was pioneered in New York State.

Whether served as the dessert or a sweet side dish is up to you but either way, you’re going to love the ease of making this dish and consuming all its seasonal goodness.  Pick your favorite variety of apple and get ready to stuff them with goodness everyone is going to love!  Smokey baked apples done on the grill, cleanup is a breeze!

Apple Preparation

Smoke coming from our wood chunks! Using a two zone cooking method

 

I’ll be using my gas grill for this recipe so I start by lighting only half the burners on my grill which I’ve added a smoker box that contains 3 hardwood chunks.  This will provide for the great smoke flavor to the apples.  While the grill heats up to about 375°F, I prepare the Macintosh apples.  First, wash and pat dry the apples.  You can use an apple corer to remove the core but note you do not want to produce a clean hole through the entire apple.  We want to produce an opening for adding the stuffing but we don’t want it to run out of the apples.  I like to use a small, sharp knife, cut into the apple stem end about ¾-inch from the stem making a circle.  Remove the core membrane and seeds leaving a firm base to the apple for filling.

Tasting Notes: Although I’ve selected Macintosh apples to know any variety will do.  Just note, if the apples are significantly larger, you will need to make an additional filling.

Sweet Stuffing

our sweet stuffing in the mixing bowl

With our apples cored, it’s time to make the sweet filling before heading to the grill.  First, know I like to use a disposable foil pan to make clean up a breeze.  In that pan, I place a roasting rack so the apples will be exposed to radiant heat all the way around the apple.  I’m making ten stuffed apple but I will give you the ingredients needed for making eight apples.

Place 1 stick of softened butter in a bowl.  Add 1 cup of light brown sugar, ½ cup chopped pecans, and 1-1/2 teaspoons of ground cinnamon.  I prefer to mix this with my hand to ensure good distribution of the ingredients.  Taking a small amount of the mixed filling, I form a log shape and insert into the apple opening, pressing down to make sure this is filled to the top of the apple.  Once all the apples are filled, I head to the grill with my pan.

 

Tasting Notes: The stuffing for this apple recipe can be easily modified.  Feel free to swap the pecan for another nut like walnut, hazelnut or almond.  For spices, consider adding ginger, allspice, and clove either in addition to or in place of the cinnamon.

No Fuss Grilling

Our Smoker box with wood chunks for smokey flavor

Once at the grill, I check to ensure my wood chunks are smoking well.  I place my pan of prepared apples on the unlit side of the grill and pour enough water into the pan to coat the bottom by about 1-inch.  This will allow moisture into the cooking area to get the apples very tender in a short amount of time.  I usually check the apples after 45 minutes and rotate the pan if needed.  When the apples are tender and the filling browned, these are ready and can be removed from the grill-#grilledapples.

Tasting Notes:  Note that if you elect to use a charcoal grill the smoke infusion produced will be stronger.  You are encouraged to still use a two-zone set up on the charcoal grill to keep the sugars from burning.

 

Serve ‘Em Up

Once the apples are tender and the filling browned, it’s time to remove the apples and prepare to serve them.  There are many options for an accompaniment to the apples.  Today, I’m using a vanilla bean ice cream that I’ve sliced into wedges.  Certainly, the apples can be served with whipped topping, another flavor of ice cream, a vanilla custard or pudding, or even a slice of hard or rind cheese.    These are best if served warm.  Don’t forget, if any filling is left, add to a pureed squash for another great recipe.  That’s why I always make extra!

our finished smokey stuffed apple!

our finished smokey stuffed apple!

SmokinLicious® Products used in this recipe:

Wood Chunks- Double & Single Filet

For more reading related to winter squash and other grilling/smoking techniques- #wintersquash

For more reading related to smokey #stuffedapples and another grilling/smoking techniques

Related reading:

-WOOD-FIRED APPLES MAKE THE BEST CAKE

-Smoked Strawberry Napoleon

-ACORN SQUASH- SWEET & SMOKY

-STRAWBERRY SEMIFREDDO GETS SMOKY

Dr. Smoke-Seasonal Apple cake with a special smoky twist!

Dr. Smoke-Seasonal smokey baked apples with wood chunks on the gas grill!

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