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Cedar plank Cooking

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Forum topic by AlaskaGuy posted 07-21-2019 05:33 PM 248 views 0 times favorited 5 replies Add to Favorites Watch
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AlaskaGuy

5332 posts in 2756 days


07-21-2019 05:33 PM

I want to try my hand at cedar plank cooking on my Kamdao Joe grill.

Now I’m too cheap you buy a commercially made cedar plank. So my question is ” I have a ton of old cedar I took off my old deck. Can I plane some of that down to make planks for cooking on?

-- Alaskan's for Global warming!


5 replies so far

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LesB

2149 posts in 3890 days


#1 posted 07-21-2019 07:09 PM

Old Deck cedar will work fine if you planed off the finish. Also inexpensive fence boards from the lumber yard work well. I just love it when the BBQ section of the store has three 12” boards for $7.00 when you can buy a 6’ fence board for $1.70.

I soak mine in water, they are about 1” thick (cut from my own trees) for at least 48 hours to saturate them so they don’t burn up during the cooking process. .
I use them to smoke cook fish (mostly Kokane/salmon) on a Weber gas BBQ by putting the wet boards directly on the “flavorizer” bars. It takes 15 to 20 minutes to cook a 12” Kokanee or trout and the bottom of the cedar boards are charred when I’m finished. The fish go from silver to a golden color from the smoke. You could probably set your boards on a rack just above the coals and do the same thing.

By the way Alder works well that way too. But that Alaskan brush alder won’t work well for planking. Each wood gives it’s own flavor.

-- Les B, Oregon

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SMP

1302 posts in 352 days


#2 posted 07-21-2019 10:27 PM

I haven’t had luck with regular cedar, not much smell to them. Might as well be any wood. Was thinking of picking up some aromatic cedar at the lumberyard instead. But i don’t eat a lot of salmon so i haven’t got around to trying it.

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pottz

5749 posts in 1431 days


#3 posted 07-22-2019 02:24 PM

yeah cedar fence boards are what i use also,i just run them through the planer and cut into planks about a foot long.like les said no need to spend several dollars on the “real” ones.

-- sawdust the bigger the pile the bigger my smile-larry,so cal.

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LesB

2149 posts in 3890 days


#4 posted 07-22-2019 06:36 PM


I haven’t had luck with regular cedar, not much smell to them. Might as well be any wood. Was thinking of picking up some aromatic cedar at the lumberyard instead. But i don’t eat a lot of salmon so i haven’t got around to trying it.

- SMP

“Aromatic” cedar would be Eastern Red cedar which I think has quite a bit of oil and would not be good for plank cooking/smoking of meat or fish. Some people even say it could be toxic if used to smoke food.

The two cedars used for food are Western Red Cedar (deck wood) and Insence Cedar. They are so similar that it is hard to tell them apart but the latter is a softer wood. I use either for smoking or plank cooking. To get any flavor from the cedar you need to have the wood positioned where the heat will char or cause it to smolder creating smoke. Just cooking food on a board does little to flavor it. The boards are not reusable.

-- Les B, Oregon

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CaptainKlutz

1613 posts in 1941 days


#5 posted 07-23-2019 12:25 AM

To get any flavor from the cedar you need to have the wood positioned where the heat will char or cause it to smolder creating smoke. Just cooking food on a board does little to flavor it. The boards are not reusable.
- LesB

+1 Need a little char/smoke from plank or it is simply wasting wood.

Choice of wood depends on your preferences for smoked meats. Many will work.
I like to use 1/4” thick apple and cherry planks for thick white fish cuts from halibut or shark. Has less bitterness than cedar planks commonly used on Salmon.

Try a cherry wood plank under a stuffed pork chop. cook/smoke till 140F inside while on the plank, then take it off the charred plank to add grill lines and finish to 160F internal temp. Put it back on the cooled off plank to serve. YUM.

Most of my cherry project scraps get feed to smoker for ribs and pork cuts. Hickory, Alder, and Mesquite get used for beef brisket or rib roasts.

Rats, getting hungry now…..

Enjoy your food!

-- I'm an engineer not a woodworker, but I can randomly find useful tools and furniture inside a pile of lumber!

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