Ceder Planking is big up in the Northwest! I'm in Montana so we have the northwest influence here! Ceder planks works great with salmon and now you can get food grade planks in hickory, maple, almost any flavor of wood. They're great to experiment with, different meats and woods, and great for people wanting to try smoking with out putting out a big investment right away. That's the point I'm at right now but looking at the next upgrade in smoking apparatuses!
I'm with Squeezy on this one. I guess I have an aversion after my brother in law served us up a bunch of grilled chicken. One bite, and I knew I wasn't gonna get rid of that flavor for a long time. He was beaming all over the place at the great idea he had come up with to use pine for flavoring. "What's really great about it," he says, "is that it's all over the place here!"
Can't help but make a face at the thought of putting meat over evergreen anything.
I've used the cedar planks for salmone , it's very important that you soak it well and remember your not useing it to smoke meats with only to hold the meat while the steam cooks it , do not use it for smoking
I found this info on cedar ... in a nutshell ... I still think it stinks!
1. Soak your plank for at least 4 hours before you start cooking
Our planks are shipped in a custom designed "Soaking Bag" to make this step easy and sanitary. Put the planks that you will be using at the bottom of the bag and fill the bag with enough water to cover the plank. Soak between 4-24 hours, before placing the plank on the grill. Proper hydration enables the Plank to create a very humid and aromatic cooking environment within your BBQ.
2. Position your plank on the grill
Use either the direct or indirect method of grilling. The direct method will impart a smoked flavor to the food as the plank slowly chars. The indirect method produces a more subtle cedar flavor. Be careful that you do not heat the plank to the point of combustion; a water filled squirt bottle by the grill is always a good idea. Apply a liberal coating of cooking oil directly to the plank, heat the plank then position your food on the plank and close the lid.
Think Low and Slow-250 degrees works well on most grills. Maintain an even temperature by using an external thermometer which enables you to keep the Lid closed. Not opening the lid preserves that warm, moist and aromatic cooking environment that you have created.
4. Cooking Time
Plank Cooking is an experience to be enjoyed, it requires that you slow down and enjoy the process
I have done salmon on cedar planks and its good.I have also had them on Alder(I Think)and that was great.If my feeble mind remembers correct is that the cedar and alder from the west coast are not the same as we have most places and is good for cooking purposes.
You are NOT SMOKING with the cedar. The meat, generally fish, is laying on a cedar plank which is not being burned up, having been soaked in water beforehand. It is just there to add flavor. I really like smoked salmon, can't say I ever had it smoked on a cedar plank so I have no knowledge of the flavor imparted.
Also, I saw cedar planks in the BBQ section in the garden center at WalMart.
It is sorta like the old Ozarks method of cooking carp. You nail the carp to an oak board, cook it, throw the carp away and eat the board.
Smoking salmon on cedar planks is AWESOME... my only issue is where to get the cedar. I can go to local cooking stores and buy 4 planks for $12, which seems like an incredible rip-off.
I know you don't want to use any treated cedar, but I was wondering if the cedar shingles you see at Lowes & Home Depot for $10 for a pack of a zillion are treated or if they're untreated? The dimensions of cedar shingles is perfect, but because they're shingles I'm wondering if they're treated - of course nobody there could tell me. I'd hate to take a chance and smoke a nice salmon fillet on a cedar plank that's been dipped in cyanide...
Once again you take the peasants way of surviving and call it high class and charge big bucks for it. Cooking on cedar is nothing new (the board is just a disposable dish, kind of a poor mans paper plate) I would say that the lemon pepper or garlic or dill does more for the taste than the plank. I have also seen four "Planks" for like $12 bucks! That is insane! I can almost guarentee that a standard shingle is not treated, but the one in a thousand that is would not be too good for you. I would think that treated shingles would be so marked so that they can charge more for them, and I would also guess that you are more likely to get an untreated shingle that is supposed to be rather than get one treated for the price of untreated.
It has been awhile but I just put a salmon steak or a small fillett on a little bit of foil and throw the smoke to it. I really like it to take on the smoke. I usually just serve it with crackers but making a cream cheese spread out of it just makes it that much better. I don't go for the dainty stuff, rugged, dry, oversmoked is always better! (and then you can tone it down with sides and wine and such)
I love your analogy for carp ... but when it comes to salmon, even if you cook it on a cedar plank ... I will eat the salmon before the plank ... it still stinks! I would eat the carp, the oak board or even the nail before that cedar plank! Only one notch above pine in my opinion!
i didn't even read past the first lines but to all newbies or non-knowers.... WE ARE NOT SMOKING OR COOKING THE CEDAR !!!!!!!!! it's a well soaked waterlogged cutting board for lack of a better term & yes i will yell again... NEVER... i repeat .. NEVER cook with or over pine ....