Our homemade smoked bacon, lettuce and fresh tomatoes for our smokey BLT Salad

Our homemade smoked bacon, lettuce and fresh tomatoes for our smokey BLT Salad

 

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We know smoked bacon is a favorite which is why we wanted to include a great recipe for fresh produce you may have available. This is our take on the BLT salad featuring smoked bacon, homegrown lettuce and tomatoes, as well as a homemade dressing and Naan croutons. Don’t forget to check out our technique on smoking pork belly which is super easy and fast for the ultimate homemade smoked bacon.

Dressing First

I believe a salad is only as good as the dressing you top it with. That is why homemade is so much better than any store bought, even those with limited ingredients and a claim to freshness. Make it yourself and you can guarantee freshness and flavor.

To start our dressing for the smoked BLT salad, add 4 tablespoons of sour cream to a medium size bowl. Now add 3 tablespoons of your favorite mayonnaise, a healthy grind of fresh ground pepper, a ½ teaspoon of minced garlic and ¼ cup of freshly diced chives. To dilute the dressing so it can be poured, start with 3 tablespoons of milk or cream and whisk well. Add additional milk or cream until you reach the consistency you prefer.

Crispy Bacon & Croutons

With the creamy chive dressing made, place in the refrigerator to chill while you begin the next steps for the smoked BLT salad.

If you have your smoked bacon ready, slice to the thickness you prefer. Place the slices on a sheet pan and crisp in the oven at 350°F. Timing for the bacon will depend on how crisp you want the outcome; plan 15 minutes for less crisp and 20-25 minutes for crispy.

While the bacon is cooking, take Naan and slice into small squares. Coat the cut pieces with a bit of oil and toast in the oven with the bacon until crisp as well; about 15 minutes. Remove both the croutons and bacon and allow to cool until they can be handled.

Tasting Notes: Feel free to change to any favorite bread for the croutons. Just be sure to toast in a single layer with a little oil until crunchy

Assembling & Plating the Salad

Once the dressing, Naan croutons, and crisp bacon are ready, it is time to assemble the other ingredients for our salad. This starts with our homegrown lettuce. I am using three types of lettuce: romaine, butter-crisp and red leaf. Gently tear or cut into ribbons. Add these to the center of a serving platter. Along one side of the lettuce, place your Naan croutons and cut tomatoes. For my tomatoes, I’m using homegrown cherry which only need to be sliced in half. To the other side of the lettuce, I place the smoked crispy bacon which I diced.

As you can see, the components of the Smoked BLT Salad are very simple but highly flavorful. Using fresh produce and herbs makes a big difference. I prefer to plate the salad after mixing individual portions in a bowl and tossing with dressing. Start by adding lettuce, smoked bacon, tomatoes, and croutons in a medium bowl. Add the desired dressing – usually 2-3 tablespoons is perfect- and toss with tongs. Then plate. Tangy, smokey freshness is all yours! Enjoy!

 

What is your favorite salad recipe featuring a smoked component? 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:

Our hand split double filet smoker wood chunks

#woodchunks

For more reading related smokey BLT salad and how to make homemade bacon!

For more reading related smokey BLT salad and how to make homemade bacon!

More recipes you might enjoy:

-SMOKED BACON ICE CREAM WILL BECOME YOUR NEW FAVORITE!

-WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

-SMOKED PEAR SALAD WITH GORGONZOLA- SWEET & SAVORY GOODNESS!

 

Dr. Smoke- You followed our smoked homemade bacon, how bout making a smokey BLT Salad?

Dr. Smoke- You followed our smoked homemade bacon, how bout making a smokey BLT Salad?

Our Snow Pea Cucumber Salad kissed by smoke adds a delicious flavor to this spring salad.

Our Snow Pea Cucumber Salad kissed by smoke adds a delicious flavor to this spring salad.

SMOKED SNOW PEAS WITH CUCUMBER SALAD Click To Tweet

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With four select ingredients readily available throughout the year, you can make this flavorful and healthy salad anytime of the year. Perfect on its own for lunch or as a side dish to beef, pork, poultry, and fish, you’ll find your own variations to keep it unique.

(more…)

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

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

Try this Smoked Pear Salad With Gorgonzola Click To Tweet

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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:

(more…)

RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE- it will totally change the taste. Try some in a refreshing salad for extra flavor

RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE- it will totally change the taste. Try some in a refreshing salad for extra flavor

STEPPING UP RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE Click To Tweet

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RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE- The peak season for radishes is April thru July so I’m taking advantage of this great seasonal vegetable and putting them on the gas grill with some wood chunks to smoke up the flavors. I’ll first provide you my technique for bringing a wood flavor to these red beauties on a traditional gas grill, then I’ll use the finished product in a smoked radish and cannellini bean salad that is perfect as a side dish or for those vegetarians, add some non-animal protein to be a main dish favorite. Let’s get started!

(more…)

The finished- WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

The finished- WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

 

A WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

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listen to- A WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD

Taking a page from Chef Alice Waters, we are making our version of the baked goat cheese salad by wood baking the goat cheese rounds on the grill using a two-zone cooking method and wood chunks for smoky flavor. Then making garlic crostini for the croutons on the charcoal grill to serve alongside this fabulous salad dish. A recipe that can be a salad course or an entrée on its own, we also give you an easy way to make this into an appetizer. Purchase 12 ounces of quality goat cheese in log form and let’s get grilling.

Goat Cheese

Marinate to Start

This dish requires at least 8 hours of marinade time though I like to do mine overnight. It’s the marinade of oil and fresh herbs that give the goat cheese great flavor. Cut the goat cheese log into ½-inch rounds. In the bottom of a glass dish, sprinkle chopped fresh herbs of your choice; today I’m using oregano but most any fresh herb will do. Place the goat cheese rounds into the dish and pour over a ¼ cup of olive oil. Turn the cheese rounds over to coat both sides. Place fresh herb sprigs over the top of the rounds, cover with wrap and marinate in the refrigerator.

Fresh herbs

Tasting Notes: Other fresh herbs work great with this recipe but note that stronger herbs like thyme and rosemary likely don’t need the layers of chopped herbs at the bottom of the dish. Simply lay the fresh herb springs on top of the goat cheese rounds and marinate in the refrigerator.

Grilling with Wood Chunks

Trays of goat cheese on the grill!

Once the goat cheese has marinated, it’s time to coat it in a mixture of ½ cup plain breadcrumbs and two teaspoons dried herb of your choice. I’ll be using oregano but other good options include thyme, basil, marjoram, rosemary. Once coated on both sides, place the cheese rounds on a lightly greased shallow pan. I’m using mini sheet pans as they work well on the grill, even for a two-zone cooking method.

As this is a cheese dish it is important that a two-zone cooking method is used which means the cheese will be going on the unlit side of the grill. I’m using a smoker box with three hardwood chunks to provide the smoke flavor to the cheese, with the box placed on the hot side of the grill. Total time to cook will be about 20 minutes. You’ll know the cheese rounds are ready once browned and bubbly.

While the cheese is on the grill, prepare the vinaigrette by combining ¼ cup red wine vinegar, salt, and fresh ground pepper. Whisk in ½ cup of olive oil and set aside.

Greens and Garlic Crostini

Crostini with garlic butter

To go with the goat cheese rounds and salad vinaigrette, I’m making garlic crostini on the charcoal grill. Using ½-inch slices of a day-old baguette, brush both sides of each slice with melted butter. Place on a high heat tolerant sheet over hot coals only, no active flames. Allow the slices to brown and slightly char before turning over. Once browned on both sides, remove from the grill and brush with the cut side of a garlic clove. I cut these crostini slices in half at the diagonal to go with the salad.

Tasting Notes: An assortment of fresh greens can be used for the salad though I like to use a combination of bitters with more savory greens.

Assembling to Enjoy

With all the components made its time to assemble our salad. Start by mixing the vinaigrette with the greens. I like to place the garlic crostini on the outside of the salad and the wood-baked cheese rounds in the center of the greens. This is best served while the cheese is warm. Here’s another suggestion: this can make for the perfect appetizer if you cut each round in half so they fit on a garlic crostini. For that recipe, prepare the same but place a few leaves of salad on the garlic crostini and top with a wood baked goat cheese half round. There you have it! A super easy salad or appetizer with that signature wood flavor that takes Chef Waters’ recipe to a new level.

SmokinLicious® products used in this recipe:

Wood Chunks: Double & Single Filet

Related recipes:

-FIRE ROASTED PEPPER MAKE THE PERFECT SALAD

-THE EASY METHOD TO COLD SMOKED CHEESE

-RASPBERRIES GO TO THE GRILL– FOR THE ULTIMATE MINI TART APPETIZER

-SMOKED CHEESE & BACON QUICHE FEATURING COLD SMOKED CHEESES

Dr. Smoke- try this-WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD on your next party!

Dr. Smoke- try this-WOOD GRILLED VERSION OF CHEF WATERS’ GOAT CHEESE SALAD on your next party!

Our Grilled Peaches for the perfect salad addition with sweet onion, Tomatoes, and fresh herbs!

Our Grilled Peaches for the perfect salad addition with sweet onion, Tomatoes, and fresh herbs!

GRILLEDPEACHES FOR THE PERFECT SALAD ADDITION

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If you’ve been a follower of our recipes and techniques for a while, then you’re aware of our preference to grill, smoke, coal cook, and ember fire in-season produce. Peaches are no exception!

I’ve got my two quarts of fresh peaches and a plan to grill these on the charcoal grill using charwood coals. Then I’ll use my luscious smoked peaches in a salad that features two additional seasonal ingredients – tomato and shallots.

Get your chimney starter of charwood or charcoal and meet me at the grill for this quick technique and recipe featuring peaches.

Fire Up the Grill!

Whenever you use the charcoal grill, it’s always best to get it lit about 30 minutes ahead of cooking. I’m using a kettle-style grill made by Stôk that has a removable center grate for an assortment of inserts. I won’t be using any inserts for this cook as my peaches will stay in a disposable foil pan for easy cooking and removal.

Start by placing charcoal or charwood in a chimney starter. Place a Fire starter in the charcoal area of the grill and place the filled chimney starter over the starter. Lite the Fire starter and allow to remain in place until all the charwood has ignited and started to reduce to hot coals. While that’s burning, let’s prepare the peaches. Be sure you have a couple of wood chunks available to add to the coals when we are ready to grill. I like to use the single filet wood chunk size from SmokinLicious®.

Tasting Notes: there are differences in charcoal so be sure to use a natural charcoal or charwood product rather than briquets as briquets will produce more heat than you need.

Perfect Peach Bites

With our charcoal grill going, it’s time to start on the peaches. There are a few ways to remove the skin from peaches including placing them in hot water for a few minutes then removing and placing in a bowl of ice water. The skins will just peel off. I’m an old school so I use a sharp paring knife and just remove the skin.

Once the skin is removed, it’s time to cut the peach into bite-size pieces. You can easily cut around the pit and cut those slices into pieces. Place all the pieces in a foil pan in an even layer.

Tasting Notes: Try to purchase peaches that have some firmness to them if you don’t plan to grill them right away. The peaches should have no bruising and have a slight give when touched. Too soft and those peaches won’t hold their shape when exposed to the grill’s heat.dicing the peachs in preparation for the smoker

 

Smoking Process

With the peaches prepared, time to take them to the grill. Pour the chimney of hot coals into the grill’s charcoal area and add the wood chunks. Add the pan of prepared peaches and placed the lid on the grill. Be sure the outtake vent on the lid is ½ way open. The intake vent at the charcoal area should be ¼ way open. Now allow smoking for 15 minutes prior to checking. Remember, we want to add smoke without reducing the peaches to a puree.

Tasting Notes: Since peaches contain 89% water, they take in the smoke vapor extremely well. Keep that in mind when you select both the charcoal and wood. Remember, oak based charcoal tends to burn hot and has a stronger undertone to fruit.

ingredients table

 

Final Salad Prep- Grilled Peaches for the perfect salad addition!

While the peaches are absorbing all that great smoke flavor, return to the kitchen and prepare the remaining ingredients for our salad.

You’ll need:

  • 1 lb. tomatoes cut into 1/2’” pieces; or if using cherry or grape tomato, halved
  • 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus additional for final drizzle
  • 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 shallot, sliced thin
  • fresh mint leaves torn
  • salt and pepper

I start by slicing my tomatoes in half, then add a teaspoon of salt to them while sitting in a colander so I can render some of the water.

the ingredients in the serving bowl and ready to add the dressing

While the tomatoes sit, I start slicing the shallot into thin strips. At this point, you’ll want to check the peaches. They should be close to or ready to remove from the grill. I like to place them in the refrigerator for about 10 minutes to cool them down for the salad. While that’s happening, let’s prepare the vinaigrette.

I prefer to mix all the vinaigrette ingredients in a measuring cup so I can easily pour it to the salad right before serving, to keep the tomato and peach from getting too soggy. Start with the extra virgin olive oil and add the rice vinegar. Next, the lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and fresh pepper. Whisk it all together and set aside while you combine the salad ingredients.

Tasting Notes: you can substitute cider vinegar for the rice vinegar and any color of tomato will do though I lean toward the reds and purples to give a color contrast from the orange peach.

Smoked peaches go into the serving bowl first, following by the tomatoes, and shallots. Pour the vinaigrette over the salad within an hour of serving and top with the torn mint leaves. A perfect balance of sweet, tart, smoky, and refreshing. An easy method and recipe you can have in 60 minutes. I love peaches so try our grilled peaches for the perfect salad addition for your next dish to pass! You will tantalize the guest taste buds!

SmokinLicious products used in this blog:

Charwood

Wood Chunks- Single Filet

Additional reading:

-PEACHES WOOD FIRED FOR A SMOKY FLAVORFUL GAZPACHO

-STEPPING UP RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE

-RASPBERRIES GO TO THE GRILL– FOR THE ULTIMATE MINI TART APPETIZER

-GRILLED PEACHES FOR THE PERFECT SALAD

Dr. Smoke add some mint, onions and tomatoes to Grilled Peaches for a perfect salad addition!

Dr. Smoke add some mint, onions, and tomatoes to Grilled Peaches for the perfect salad addition!

POTATO SALAD GETS SMOKE INFUSION

Serving bowl of Our Potato salad gets smoke infusion recipe!

Looking to add some smoky flavor to your BBQ try this Potato salad gets smoke infusion recipe and please your guests taste buds!

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Without question, potatoes are my favorite vegetable to expose to smoke vapor. For one, it is so easy to do whether you select a gas/LP grill, charcoal grill, convection grill, or electric unit. Additionally, it takes such a short amount of time to cook them this way.

I’ll give you my preparation for the potatoes and then my take on the traditional potato salad made with our awesome smoked potatoes.

Preparing for the Grill

The potatoes inside the Orion Cooker

The potatoes inside the Orion Cooker

 

Honestly, you can use any of your favorite potatoes for this technique and recipe. I’ll tell you that I’m firing up my Orion Cooker as the high heat of this unit will allow my potatoes to become tender in about 60 minutes and I don’t need to do more than turn the potatoes one time. Of course, I’m using the custom blend wood chips sold by Orion to ensure that the smoke infusion is perfectly balanced. When using the Orion Cooker, a chimney starter of briquets should be started and the fuel pan of the unit filled with unlit briquets. Personally, I like to use long-handled tongs and place my hot coals from the chimney started to the inner edge of the fuel pan. That ensures that I direct the heat very quickly to the metal cylinder of the unit.

Tasting Notes:

If you’re using a traditional charcoal grill, try to do the cooking on hot coals only, with no flame. Start a chimney or two of hot coals and allow these to burn down until they are just hot coals.Then pour into the charcoal area. I often use a fine wire mesh in my charcoal area so I can retain even the smallest hot coal for my cooking.

On a gas grill, use a two-zone cooking method with wood chunks placed on the hot side of the grill, potatoes on the unlit side, and the lit burners set to low-to-medium.

Before placing the potatoes on the grill grate of any of these units, clean them, pat dry, and pierce with a fork on both sides so the water in the potatoes can steam out during the cooking process.

No Work

As I said, potatoes are the perfect vegetable to put on the grill or smoker as their skin acts like a mini cooker and cooks them tender. You’ll simply need to turn the potatoes just one time during the hour they grill. While they are cooking, you can prepare the dressing to be ready to put everything together.

Tasting Notes: Always grill and smoke the potatoes with the skins on to keep the smoke vapor from getting too strong. Remember, potatoes have a lot of water which will be an attractant to smoke vapor.

Creamy Dressing

The ingredients for our recipe!

The Ingredients for our Smoked Potato recipe

For our creamy dressing, you’ll need the following ingredients:

1-1/2 cups of mayonnaise

Rice or cider vinegar- 2 tablespoons

2 tablespoons of sugar

2 tablespoons of yellow mustard

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon garlic powder

½ teaspoon pepper

2 celery ribs, sliced

1 cup of onion, minced

5 hard-boiled eggs, coarsely chopped

paprika

Start by combining the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, garlic powder, salt, pepper, and sugar. Be sure everything is mixed in well. Taste to be sure everything is balanced and adjust as needed. Usually, adjustments are made to the vinegar or mustard levels. The texture will be very creamy.

Once the potatoes are tender, you can remove them from the grill and allow to cool. Once cool enough to handle, cut into bite-size pieces. Now add the chopped smoked potatoes to the dressing bowl and mix until all the potatoes are covered in dressing. Give it just a few minutes to absorb.

Final Salad Touches

The ingredients mixed with our Hardboiled Eggs on top!

Must add the Eggs for our Smoked Potato Salad

Now that the dressing has been added to the smoked potato pieces, it’s time to add the remaining ingredients. First in, the celery and onion. Mix this well to ensure a single bite doesn’t get all onion! Next, the chopped egg is added. Gently mix this into the salad to keep the larger pieces from crumbling too far. Finally, the sprinkle of paprika over the top of the salad. I prefer a Spanish or Hungarian paprika. That’s it! Now chill until ready to serve and enjoy this super flavorful take on the non-traditional potato salad gets smoke infusion!

Tasting Notes

 

You can use a smoked paprika if you want even more kick of smoke but most of the time, a traditional paprika is suitable.

SmokinLicious Products used in this blog:

Wood Chips: Grande Sapore®

Additional reading:

-The Breakfast Potato Takes on Smoke!

-GIVING AN EDGE TO SMOKY COCKTAIL SAUCE

-CORNISH GAME HEN MEETS SMOKE IN THE ORION COOKER

-SMOKED POTATO CURRY SMOKINLICIOUS® STYLE!

Dr. Smoke- Bet you can't stop at one bit when you try our Potato salad gets a smoke infusion!

Dr. Smoke- Bet you can’t stop at one bit when you try our Potato salad gets smoke infusion!

 

Our fire Roasted Pepper make the perfect Salad with these white beans!

Our fire Roasted Pepper make the perfect Salad with these white beans!

FIRE ROASTED PEPPER MAKE THE PERFECT SALAD

Summary:

Fire roasted peppers by ember cooking on hot coals in our open pit or charring peppers on the grill for this roasted peppers salad. Fire roasted pepper make the perfect salad blog and should be in you roasted peppers salad recipes under healthy foods! The fresh parsley, arugula, added to the white beans are refreshing! You must try this!

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If you are a follower or subscriber of ours, then you’ve likely seen our recommendations for charring peppers on the hot coals using an open pit, fireplace, charcoal grill or even gas grill. It’s so easy yet gives such a flavorful outcome to use in all types of recipes.

I’m giving you a salad recipe that is hearty enough to be a salad entrée or the perfect side for your favorite protein.

Gather Simple Ingredients

Simple ingredients make this wonder salad

I truly believe anyone can do both the charred pepper technique and make this salad without any difficulty. Here are the ingredients you’ll need to bring the salad to life:

6 charred peppers, skinned, seeded, and quartered

2 anchovy fillets packed in olive oil, minced

1 clove garlic, minced

2 teaspoons sherry vinegar

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley

1 (15 oz.) can white beans, drained and rinsed

¼ ounce Parmesan cheese, grated

1 cup packed spicy baby greens like arugula or watercress

In addition to the ingredients, you’ll need salt, pepper, a bowl, and whisk.

Vinaigrette Is Key

Making the Vinaigrette

You’ll want to get any larger pepper slices cut down into thinner slices. Once the peppers are evenly sized, it’s time to season them with salt and fresh ground pepper. Do this by laying them out on a platter. Taking a small bowl, it’s time to make the vinaigrette. Start putting the anchovies, garlic, vinegar, oil, and parsley in the bowl and whisk together. Add the beans and toss to coat with the vinaigrette. Season the mixture with salt and fresh ground pepper. You can taste and adjust the vinegar and seasonings until it fits your taste. Now prepare the serving dish to assemble the salad.

Simple Layers of Flavor

our finished pepper and bean saladWith the peppers charred and vinaigrette made, it’s time to assemble the salad. Start by laying out the peppers on a platter or serving dish. Spoon the bean mixture over the top of the peppers and top with spicy greens like baby arugula or watercress. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese. That’s it!

This is a perfect side with a great steak, ribs, chicken or fish. It’s hearty enough to use as a main entrée as well for those looking for a healthier meal. It’s especially refreshing during the warmer seasons. Remember, char extra peppers and freeze them so you can pull them out for this fabulous recipe any time of the year.

 

Purchase products:

Wood Chips- Grande Sapore®

Related reading:

-CHARRED PEPPER DIP

-STEPPING UP RADISH SALAD WITH A WOOD-FIRED FLARE

-SPICY-CHAR HUMMUS

-Ember Cooked Sweet Peppers

 

Dr Smoke-Our fire Roasted Pepper make the perfect Salad with these white beans!

Dr. Smoke- Our fire Roasted Pepper make the perfect Salad with these white beans!